CLOSED

Full-Time

Startup & High Growth

Movemeback African oppportunity location
  • Kampala , Uganda

SolarNow - Sourcing Manager Movemeback African opportunity cover image

Description

Over 500 million people across sub-Saharan Africa lack access to electricity, and the International Energy Agency expects that number to increase to 700 million by 2030. Since extending the grid to them would cost trillions of dollars, micro-scale, off-grid power from solar, is often the only viable answer to energy poverty. In countries like Uganda, where only 15% of the population has an on-grid connection, there’s undeniable potential for solar to leapfrog traditional energy provision models; however, affordability, perceptions of low quality, and the absence of last-mile distribution and maintenance networks are curtailing development. These are the very problems that SolarNow was founded to solve. The company has grown fast in the past 6 years. From a small start-up, the distribution and finance company grew to become the market leader for high-quality, customised solar energy solutions for households and the entrepreneurial class in Uganda and, since 2017, also Kenya. The company now has over 600 staff, and aims to double in size over the next two years. Solar Now are currently seeking a Sourcing Manager to join their team.

 

As the new Sourcing Manager, you will be responsible for the development and implementation of an international Sourcing strategy. You will lead the Sourcing team (currently 2 FTE), and maintain inventory availability at the warehouses in Uganda and Kenya, to ensure the successful delivery of solar systems to our clients. You will negotiate favourable terms and contracts with suppliers across the globe, develop a Material Requirements Planning, and develop a procurement budget based on the international sales forecasts. By planning procurement, international freight and customs clearing accordingly, you assure no stock outs and seamless availability of products. As the ideal candidate, you are excited about being a part of the Sourcing team. A hands-on individual, you are also strategic and capable of developing a multi-year plan in collaboration with the Head of Supply Chain Management. You are a problem-solver who enjoys understanding processes in order to improve them, a direct and candid communicator, a change agent who enjoys working with a range of stakeholders, and last but not least, you have a non compromising ability to get results.

 

Role Responsibilities:

 

  • Strategy: Development of the overall sourcing strategy and multi-year objectives together with Head of Supply Chain Management. You are responsible for the deployment of this strategy and for reaching the strategic objectives (e.g. cost, lead-time, quality).
  • Forecasting: Ensure accurate, efficient and timely stock forecasting and order placing, and make sure these are in line with and adhering to local and international legislation. Liaise with the SolarNow sales departments to make sure inventory forecasts are adjusted on a monthly basis, and all stakeholders are up to date on planning.
  • Order tracking: Ensure order management through the steps of production, quality inspection, shipping and clearing.
  • Problem solving: Timely identifcation and assessment of  forecast, stock, clearing and supplier related challenges, and take appropriate measures to mitigate these. Inform stakeholders where applicable to ensure alignment.
  • Financial planning: Plan and monitor the overall sourcing costs and propose budgets to Finance and Head of SCM.
  • Team management: Coach and support the sourcing team and plan on required capacity. Monitor the team’s performance, have weekly team meetings, create an effective working and learning environment, and create individual development plans to enable growth of individual team members.
  • Product and supplier vetting: Develop the global supplier strategy and manage supplier relationships. By regularly identifying new suppliers you ensure the highest quality and competitive prices.
  • Quality control: Design the overall framework for Quality Management together with Product development and the Head of SCM in order to ensure the SolarNow quality standards are met.

Criteria

  • Bachelors or Master’s degree in Supply Chain Management, Procurement, Business operations, or equivalent working experience
  • At least 3+ years of experience in Logistics, Supply Chain Management, Procurement, or related field
  • Enthusiasm to work with a team and with various stakeholders
  • Open attitude to personal growth and taking on new responsibilities
  • Entrepreneurial mindset with the ability to spot opportunities for business improvement
  • Strong negotiation skills
  • High level of oral and written communication skills
  • Fluency in English
  • Must be a Ugandan or East African national, due to sponsorship restrictions

Benefits

Globally competitive salary and benefits, commensurate with experience

About SolarNow

More than 500 million people across sub-Saharan Africa lack access to electricity and the International Energy Agency expects that number to increase to 700 million by 2030. Since extending the grid to them would cost billions of dollars, micro-scale, off-grid power from solar is often the only viable answer to energy poverty.

 

In countries like Uganda, where only 20% of the population has an on-grid connection, there’s undeniable potential for solar to leapfrog traditional energy provision models; however, affordability, perceptions of low quality and the absence of last-mile distribution and maintenance networks are curtailing development.

 

These are the very problems that SolarNow was founded to solve. A Dutch company with its head office in Kampala and core operations in Uganda and Kenya, it sells high-quality solar solutions to fit the needs of rural households and small entrepreneurs — from 10Wp small solar home systems capable of powering a radio, phone and a number of lights to 5kWp systems that can power a small office or machine – plus a range of consumer electronics, including televisions, fridges, flat irons, shavers and water pumps. Typical clients are rural households buying a 50-100Wp system to power 6 lights and a television and charge their phones.

 

Crucially, SolarNow also provides credit that allows customers to spread payment for all these products over 24 months. Together with a network of 47 branches (800 FTE) in Uganda and Kenya and a price plan that includes full installation and service – backed by a unique five-year warranty – SolarNow has all the pieces in place to take optimal advantage of this unique market opportunity. The company already serves over 16,000 clients in Uganda and Kenya and plans to roll out its operations into other African countries during the coming years.