Job advert - Pico Solar Product Market Manager. Business Innovation Facility. Malawi

Pico Solar Products Market Manager

BIF (Business Innovation Facility) is a 5 year Programme funded by DFID which aims to improve the performance of market systems providing livelihoods and access to basic services for many poor people.

BIF supports businesses to innovate in ways that address market constraints.  It has evaluated and selected three markets based on their high potential for pro-poor impact, economic growth opportunities and the feasibility of intervention.

The selected markets are Pigeon Peas, Pico Solar Products and Rice.  Imani Development is the National Contractor for the BIF Programme in Malawi and is seeking to fill vacancies in this Programme.


Pico Solar Products Market Manager

One of the key BIF interventions is to catalyse the market for Pico Solar Power (PSP) products in Malawi including low-end household products.  With a huge off-grid population, Malawi has a vast potential for PSP.  It is, however, a challenging market for the private sector with a difficult macro-economic environment, high levels of poverty and a sub-optimal policy framework.

BIF aims to address these barriers with a set of interventions: Business Development Services, Market Intelligence and Influencing, Policy and Regulation, and Access to Finance.  The Market Manager role is an exciting opportunity to lead BIF in catalysing the PSP market in Malawi.


Reporting to the BIF Country Manager, you will be responsible for providing technical direction and  delivery of PSP products intervention in line with a market strategy which has already been developed.  This includes:

  • Lead programme market analysis and strategy

  • Design and manage BIF’s strategic intervention areas: Business Development Services, Market Intelligence and Influencing, Policy and Regulation, Access to Finance

  • Facilitate consultancy support to strategic partners in the industry and Government

  • Develop strategic new partners to increase BIF’s influence and support to the market

  • Manage relationships with key stakeholders in industry, Government and the development community

  • Support M&E activities

  • Programme reporting


Qualifications and Experience

  • Educated to Masters level in Agribusiness, Economics, Business Management or similar

  • A minimum of 3 years work experience in the PSP sector and home solar systems in LDCs, preferably in Africa

  • Knowledge of development issues would be advantageous

  • Experience in project design, developing TORs, identifying and managing subcontractors, M&E and reporting

  • Knowledge of Malawi or the PSP and home solar system markets (or other rural consumer goods markets, such as mobile phones, cook stoves, etc) would be advantageous, as would experience working on market-systems based projects


Personal Competencies

  • Strong analytical skills and ability to recognise implementable solutions and apply findings and recommendations independently

  • Project management skills: able to manage a small team, plan and manage budgets, work under time pressure to deliver high quality outputs

  • A high level of commercial awareness and understanding of business

  • Confidence to develop strong relationships with senior level clients and stakeholders, i.e. government officials, donor partners and business executives

  • Flexibility to work as a team player and pick up additional tasks at short notice


The successful candidate will be offered a competitive compensation package.  The position is based in Blantyre, Malawi, with regular travel throughout the region.  Fluency in English is essential.

To apply for this post, please email a detailed Curriculum Vitae together with a covering letter and a short piece of written work (less than 2 pages) to Judi Pennington [] by 12 noon on Monday 7th March 2016

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