Measuring Market Ready impact

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Viviana Vasquez

Today, in commemoration of the week of the World Biodiversity DayLa Mano del Mono would like to share the results of the impact measurement, in alliance with Alternaa leading organization in this area for Central America. This exercise focused on evaluating the impact of the Market Ready Model in experiential and nature tourism companies that have a direct impact on the conservation of natural areas and the well-being of their communities in Mexico and Latin America.

We consider this evaluation essential to provide feedback on the effectiveness of the Market Ready Model and thus make adjustments in its scaling to other experiential and nature tourism destinations. During the last few years, La Mano del Mono has worked on the systematization and instrumentalization of impact measurement in its projects, recognizing its importance in generating significant change.

The Market Ready Model for Protected Area Conservation and People

At the recent session held on May 9, 2023the results of the first impact measurement exercise carried out by Alternating and La Mano del Mono. This instrument was applied in companies participating in the Sustainable and Market Ready Destination Crops in destinations such as the Oaxaca Coast, the Lacandon Jungle, and the Neovolcanic Axis, among others. 

The allies of Alternate, recognized as Fellows of Ashoka and organizers of the Latin American Impact Investment Forum in Central Americaled the design of this instrument and Ethel Arias, from La Mano del Mono, coordinated the process of "alignment" between the measurement needs of the Market Ready Model.

The following participated in the exercise 20 companiesThrough a series of questions related to different categories, valuable data were obtained to establish a baseline.

The results provided relevant information, ranging from annual sales figures and revenue growth, average financing, sustainable practices implemented and the level of satisfaction of companies in their collaboration with La Mano del Mono. In addition, the study revealed that the 85% of businesses are currently in operation, demonstrating remarkable business activity in the region despite the crisis caused by the HIV/AIDS pandemic. COVID-19. On the other hand, it was found that the 45% of the businesses analyzed have a track record of more than 5 years of life. This positive data contrasts with the results of the INEGI's National Occupation and Employment Survey (ENOE).which indicates that in Mexico the 75% of the companies closed in less than 2 years since its creation.

We also found that the 18% of the businesses have successfully established themselves in the market and overcome the initial challenges. Along the same lines, the 24% of the businesses have reached their break-even point, which means that they have managed to generate sufficient revenues to cover their operating costs. 

The study showed that only 16% of the companies do not have a legal status. 

A key outcome is that companies generated these innovations during the Cultivation of Sustainable Destinations and Market Ready:

- have shifted from a traditional to a digital model,

- have incorporated new sales channels, and

- have incorporated new services (and experiential tourism products).

The data reveal that the 84% of the businesses that implemented the Market Ready Model have established a legal figure. This is extremely positive, as having a legal entity provides security and protection for entrepreneurs as well as for their customers and suppliers. Having a legal status gives them access to a wide range of benefits and opportunities, such as the possibility of obtaining financing and participating in government programs.

In the year 2022the companies were able to achieve total sales of an impressive US$439,385, exceeding the previous year's sales, which amounted to US$379,374. This achievement represents an outstanding increase of 16% compared to last year, demonstrating solid and promising growth in the companies' business performance.

Likewise, median sales in the United States are 2022 stood at US$5,750, while in 2021 was US$3,625. This significant growth of the 59% compared to last year underscores the company's continued success and steady progress in increasing sales.

These data reflect the diversity and dynamism of the business landscape in the region. Each of these businesses represents a story of effort, perseverance and success. It is encouraging to see how profitable, sustainable and market-ready businesses are leading new tourism paradigms that contribute to economic growth and the well-being of people in tourism and how these businesses contribute to economic growth and the well-being of people.

Within the businesses that have a legal status, there is a diversity in their organizational structures. Cooperatives represent a significant portion, highlighting the importance of collaborative work and the focus on mutual benefit in these businesses. On the other hand, businesses incorporated under other legal forms reflect a greater variety in terms of ownership structure and governance.

It is interesting to note the innovations that these companies have implemented to adapt to the changing business environment during the Growing Sustainable Destinations and Market Ready. First, many of them have made the transition from a traditional to a digital business model. This involves adopting technology and digitizing processes to improve efficiency, reach a wider audience and take advantage of the opportunities offered by the digital environment. These companies have incorporated new sales channels, allowing them to diversify their revenue streams and reach different market segments. This may include opening online stores, participating in e-commerce platforms or collaborating with other businesses to expand their reach.

Another important innovation is the incorporation of new experiential services and products. This means that these companies have moved from offering basic services to experiential tourism products that generate greater value in the market. This allows them to generate additional revenues and create a more complete experience for their customers.

These innovations reflect the adaptability and opportunity-seeking of these businesses. By embracing change and seeking creative ways to grow, these companies are positioning themselves for long-term success and demonstrating their ability to innovate in a competitive business environment.

El objetivo principal de esta herramienta de medición es realizar evaluaciones anuales del impacto en las empresas que elevan su potencial de negocio e impacto con Modelo Market Ready.

But that's not all... The companies assessed La Mano del Mono with a score of 4.5 out of 5 in terms of satisfactionThe company has been recognized for the valuable contribution that the programs have made to the growth of their businesses.

In addition, La Mano del Mono received a rating of 9 out of 10 in terms of the likelihood that companies will recommend our services to other entrepreneurs. This demonstrates the confidence and high valuation that entrepreneurs have in the programs offered by our organization.

The results presentation session was not only a space for sharing information, but also an opportunity for learning and reflection. The knowledge acquired and the reflections that emerged from this meeting will help enrich future impact measurement exercises and align La Mano del Mono's actions to get even closer to the desired impact through the Market Ready Model, thus benefiting the companies and communities with which we collaborate.

Agradecemos a la GIZ, la Agencia Alemana de Cooperación Internacional y a U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service por la confianza en impulsar Cultivos de Destinos Sustentables y Market Ready. Reconocemos que medir el impacto del turismo sostenible en empresas, comunidades y destinos es todo un reto y sin su alianza estos resultados no serían realidad. Por otro lado, agradecemos a las empresas de Costa de Oaxaca, Selva Lacandona y Eje Neovolcánico quienes se tomaron el tiempo para realizar el estudio de medición de impacto.

Writing and Style: Viviana Vásquez, Communication Leader and Carlos Aguilar, Lead Facilitator.