Empowerment through 5by20 Trainings in Ghana

The Coca-Cola Company for economically empowering 5 million women across the Company’s value chain by the year 2020 - announced in 2012 - is making headway in Ghana.

The Coca-Cola Company in Ghana launched the 5by20 campaign in 2013 and has since reached over 3,300 5by20 beneficiaries in the Greater Accra, Eastern, Northern and Ashanti regions, improving their livelihoods significantly. In Ghana, 5by20 focuses on exploring business opportunities for start-ups, training small business owners in customer relations and business planning, providing networking opportunities for participants, and arranging micro-loans through a Ghanaian bank.

Mr. Rodrigue Bila, Franchise Manager, EQAT, addressing the 5by20 participants.

The program aims to train an additional 1,500 women this year. The training for this year began on June 6 in Accra and its surrounding towns. To reach the goal, the training sessions that started in different locations in Accra will be replicated in two more regions before the end of the year.

The target group for the first part of the training consisted of women within the Full Service Model (FSM) and among existing Coca-Cola retailers. The FSM includes the daily distribution of a full kit (ice box, products and ice) to a retailer operating in the informal sector with no payment from the recipient. The distributor collects the payment in cash the following day. However, the retailer only pays for the products effectively sold and he is handed a new kit by the distributor in exchange for the old one.

“The 5by20 initiative is the Company’s global commitment to ensure that at least 5 million women gain the needed knowledge and support in order to become their own bosses as well as support their families and communities and the nation as a whole”, shared Mr. Rodrigue Bila - Franchise Manager for Coca-Cola Equatorial Africa Limited - at the beginning of this year’s training program.

Mr. Isaac Antwi, PAC Director for the Coca-Cola Bottling Company, Ghana, facilitating the training.

Mr. Isaac Antwi, who acts as the 5by20 trainer in Ghana and as Public Affairs and Communications Director of The Coca-Cola Bottling Company in Ghana took the participants through a business skills training, a financial skills training and customer service education. He encouraged them to have a vision of where they want to get in business, to have a business plan and also to set targets and put in place measures to achieve those targets. "A strong vision needs to be included in your business plans in order to propel or compel you to push further in achieving them."

He also urged participants to demonstrate a pleasant and acceptable character towards business, and practice safety and hygiene at their various shops to attract more customers to buy their products.

He underscored the need to be goal-oriented, think creatively and research ways to grow and add value to their business.

Participants were allowed to ask questions and also make suggestions so their peers could learn and apply to their business.

Mrs. Elizabeth Baba, a 5by20 beneficiary, commended Coca-Cola for giving her the opportunity to partake in the training. “I have gained a better and clearer understanding of how a business ought to be run and sustained," she said.

Beneficiaries of 5by20 received a certificate after the completion of the program. It is worth knowing that one does not necessarily have to sell Coca-Cola before joining this program. All a potential participant needs to do is show interest in the training irrespective of what they do. Trainees, however, who desire to be part of the Coca-Cola family can receive a starter kit which includes an umbrella, a Coca-Cola cooler as well as cases of Coke products to launch sales.