The Youth Citizen Entrepreneurship Competition is an activity within the framework of the UNESCO Global Action Programme (GAP) on Education for Sustainable Development (ESD)

The Net Market

Published on July 3, 2014 um 12:12

Summary of your idea

The idea is to create a market for used nylon, particularly from used fishing nets, in the Philippines. The fishing grounds are becoming more and more polluted with fishermen not knowing how to dispose of their used nylon. By creating a company that buys used nylon per kilogram at a reasonable price, fishermen will be more motivated to keep their used nylon and clean them for selling. The company will then sell this with a mark-up to different companies like Interface and DuPont who uses the used nylon for their manufacturing and other processes. Though there are is a current NGO organization under Interface that does such outreach to certain villages, an enterprise model will increase impact to other cities and set the standards for both buyer and seller, making the trade more efficient. If successful, this business can then be copied to other cities or even to other countries where there are higher demands and supplies for used nylon.

Expected impact of your idea on sustainable development

By reaching out to more and more fishing villages, this means that the company is able to provide these villages additional income for their fishing nets that would have otherwise been waste. In order to successfully reach as much families, the plan is to assign a woman ambassador who is from the village to reach out to the different families as she would be most familiar with the community set-up. Beyond that, she can also teach other women on how to make sure the nylon is clean before it can be sold. Since the men are usually busy out in the water, the women in the families can take up the task to pick out those unnecessary garbage in the net. With the company buying more used nylon, this means that the waste that could have gone to the ocean (usually the culprit in ghost fishing) is now well-disposed to avoid deaths of sea animals or increase water pollution. Such pollution has had severe consequences to the community especially in the fishermens livelihood given lesser and lesser catch. Lastly, in order to continuously sustain the business, a profitable model must be in place for this market to make sense.

Plans for implementation and sustainability

The initial plan is to reach the fishing villages in the areas of Northern Mindanao. The wives of the fishermen are usually the ones tasked to go into the city and buy the fishing materials their husband needs. There are only a handful of these stores that sell such fishing supplies and visiting these and talking to the customers would help in identifying the locations and size of these fishing villages. The company will also talk to these stores to serve as hubs where people can bring back their used fishing nets for weighing. This model can work for those large fishing companies where they have their own transportation and have huge volumes to sell. While for those smaller fishing families, the company can visit these villages, assign an ambassador to spread the word and have them discuss among themselves a monthly schedule, for example, where they can gather all the nylon in one place for pick-up. The company can provide the sacks to pack the nylon and pick this up upon reaching a certain minimum weight. These will then be stored in a warehouse for pick-up by the buyer. The company will also need to ensure that there are buyers for these used fishing nets. Though the actual recycling process of nylon requires huge capital investment for the equipment, there are already a number of other buyers that have been using such in their processes. The company must first and foremost collaborate with these buyers to avoid risk of no sale. This way, the company can gauge the scale it needs to meet the demand and to earn a profit at the same time. Personal resources of trucks and warehouses are available and financial resources can be obtained through bank loans.

Your profile

My name is Jennylyn Sy, 25 years old and Im from Cagayan de Oro City, Philippines. Im currently a second-year MBA student at China Europe International Business School (CEIBS). I used to work for two multinational companies in the supply chain functions of procurement and logistics. My family runs a fishing supplies business distributing to a lot of other stores in nearby towns and villages. Though I initially planned to use MBA to accelerate in my career, I have decided to pursue social entrepreneurship not only because the challenge thrills me but more importantly because of the direct impact this model brings to the society. When I was taking my bachelors, I joined activities that provided exposure to the urban and rural poor of the country, also in the fishing villages. This exposure has constantly moved me to think of ways to improve their condition and reduce poverty. One of my classes in CEIBS was called Business, Society and Environment. We had a guest speaker from Interface in one of the sessions that mentioned their outreach to certain villages in central Philippines and thought to turn the activity into a social enterprise that can scale and impact more villages at the same time.

Stage of Idea

conceptual stage

Your idea has a positive impact on

environment, food security, poverty reduction, empowerment of women

Visiting the Fishing Farm of our Customer - Northern Mindanao, Philippines 2010

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