According to Wetility CEO, raising money is just the start of a SME’s journey.

The majority of aspiring business owners have their eyes firmly fixed on the prize: securing the necessary capital to see their idea realised and their enterprise come to fruition. Many people don’t realise that even once the necessary cash is obtained, the journey will still be difficult. Unfortunately, many fail to progress past the initial funding round for the same reason.

It’s important to have a plan and know what you want. Many small and medium-sized businesses (SMEs) are content to continue operating as startups for the foreseeable future. However, it is crucial to plan and get ready if there is a need and desire to scale up.

That was the case with Wetility, our scale-up company for solar solutions. Wetility is currently on a substantial growth trajectory, and we have successfully raised funds on multiple times during the previous few years. This is in part due to the help and direction we’ve gotten from international funders who support our ambition of supplying continuous, reasonably priced sustainable energy to one million homes within the next five to ten years.

Finding finance is a significant accomplishment and is by no means a simple task. Many small enterprises fail to succeed. It’s crucial to keep in mind though that once the cash is in place, the real work really starts. The last phase is to scale up your SME, which entails extending operations, growing your clientele, and raising sales. This can be a difficult undertaking and shouldn’t be undervalued.

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It takes careful planning, execution, and monitoring to scale up a SME. After obtaining capital, there are a few essential tactics that may be investigated to aid in scaling up your SME.

the creation of a growth strategy

Creating a growth strategy is the initial stage. This entails deciding on key performance indicators (KPIs), creating targets, and identifying your business objectives. Wetility’s growth plan is based on an in-depth examination of the market, our competitors, and our clients.

Because load shedding is still a problem, the solar industry is currently experiencing a boom. By being creative and putting the needs of our clients first in this climate, we set ourselves apart from the other solar energy suppliers. In order to make solar energy accessible and cheap for as many people as possible, we are thus focused on fostering innovation to deliver value to customers while also reducing costs.

Making educated judgements and setting priorities as you expand your business is made easier with a clearly defined growth strategy. We were fortunate to have mentoring and assistance from a variety of stakeholders as we built, formed, and revised ours. As a result, we have been able to guarantee that we have the funding, people resources, and technological infrastructure that we require.

the acquisition of new clients

Customer acquisition is one of the main factors influencing SME growth. Focusing on growing your customer base is important as you scale up.

When we first began working with the MultiChoice Africa Accelerator Programme, we already had a product and paying clients, but we wanted to build up our business in order to better enter the local market. To accomplish our objectives in this area, we have been collaborating with the business professionals on the initiative.

We discovered that in order to attract new clients and keep old ones, it is critical to evaluate your marketing and sales efforts. The target market and corporate growth strategy should be taken into account when planning marketing and sales initiatives.

Assembling a solid squad

A robust and committed team is necessary for scaling up, which calls for the hiring of qualified individuals with the necessary expertise. We have had to bring on additional staff members who can assist us in achieving our growth goals as our business operations grow. To draw and keep great talent, it’s critical to create an environment that values accountability, collaboration, and innovation.

Currently, we have a full-time workforce and supplement it with some activities that are outsourced in order to access a bigger talent pool and get a competitive advantage.

track performance indicators

As we scale up, it’s crucial to keep an eye on performance metrics. This will make it easier to monitor progress, spot problem areas, and make wise decisions.

The growth plan and KPIs should be in line with performance measures. Revenue growth, client acquisition expenses, customer retention rates, and employee productivity are some typical performance metrics to keep an eye on.

The next action

Even though expanding a SME after receiving capital can be difficult, it also presents an exciting chance to advance the company. We intend to successfully expand Wetility in order to meet our corporate goals, which are motivated by the desire to give everyone access to energy independence.

We had high expectations when we made it to the pitching round of the MultiChoice Africa Accelerator Programme at the Dubai World Trade Centre in 2021. Investors of the kind to which we were exposed might not have looked at the business otherwise. We were prepared, knew what we wanted, and were aware that we had to take advantage of the chance presented to us.

As we moved farther along our entrepreneurial journey, it helped us reflect on our own behaviour and seriously consider how we position our business and where we want to take it.

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