Product details

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Subject category: Entrepreneurship
Published by: The Legatum Center for Development and Entrepreneurship at MIT
Originally published in: 2018
Revision date: 01-Mar-2019
Length: 25 pages
Data source: Published sources
Notes: This item is part of a free case collection. For terms & conditions go to www.thecasecentre.org/freecaseterms

Abstract

Soko's 'virtual factory' of 2,300 artisanal workshops distributed around Nairobi, Kenya produced brass, horn, and bone jewelry for a discerning global market. The firm combined a mobile platform with state-of-the-art machine learning algorithms to match the most qualified artisans with the right production jobs and perform remote quality checks on completed products. The company had grown quickly, increasing the annual income of its artisans by up to five times and helping dozens of people move out of slums. Yet Soko struggled with the variability of its retail market, and cofounder Ella Peinovich wanted to scale up year-round operations to provide sustainable work for all Soko's artisans. Could Peinovich increase Soko's sales while maintaining her commitment to quality goods for Soko's customers and decent jobs for its artisans? This case is part of the Legatum Center for Development and Entrepreneurship at Massachusetts Institute of Technology free case collection (visit www.thecasecentre.org/legatum for more information on the collection).

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Abstract

Soko's 'virtual factory' of 2,300 artisanal workshops distributed around Nairobi, Kenya produced brass, horn, and bone jewelry for a discerning global market. The firm combined a mobile platform with state-of-the-art machine learning algorithms to match the most qualified artisans with the right production jobs and perform remote quality checks on completed products. The company had grown quickly, increasing the annual income of its artisans by up to five times and helping dozens of people move out of slums. Yet Soko struggled with the variability of its retail market, and cofounder Ella Peinovich wanted to scale up year-round operations to provide sustainable work for all Soko's artisans. Could Peinovich increase Soko's sales while maintaining her commitment to quality goods for Soko's customers and decent jobs for its artisans? This case is part of the Legatum Center for Development and Entrepreneurship at Massachusetts Institute of Technology free case collection (visit www.thecasecentre.org/legatum for more information on the collection).

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