On 13th September 2022, the ‘Small Package Exporter Champions (SPEC)’ Programme, initiated under the Workstream 2: e-Trade Portal Development and Promotion of the SeT4SME Project hosted a match making event to introduce 12 mentors to the 15 silver certified SPEC members who would receive a 3-month tailored mentorship.
The SPEC is a capacity-building and business networking program for Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) looking to ship small package consignments internationally and drive their export growth. The program combines awareness raising, capacity building, expert mentorship, and a certificate system.
As, the mentorship period has now completed, Swisscontact, Khmer Enterprise (KE), and EuroCham in collaboration with the Ministry of Commerce (MoC) and Cambodia Women Entrepreneurs Association (CWEA) organized a certificate award and prize-giving event to celebrate the achievements of the 15 SPEC SMEs who have completed the mentorship program and provide them with a platform to showcase their export performance, benefits from the training and mentorship, and future potentials and opportunities for further expanding their small package exports. Qualifying SMEs were also awarded the Gold SPEC Certificate and Cash Prizes by H.E. Samheng Bora, Secretary of State, Ministry of Commerce, H.E. Dr. Chhieng Vanmunin, CEO (Chief Executive Officer), Khmer Enterprise and Mr. Rajiv Pradhan, Country Director, Swisscontact.
The 15 qualifying SMEs were evaluated on their key learnings from the mentorship, their future potentials, and opportunities for further expanding their small package exports and how they plan to inspire other SMEs. The SMEs were scored by a panel of judges represented by Mr. Hong Bunseng from Ministry of Commerce, H.E. Mam Dathalineth from Cambodia Women Entrepreneurs Association, Mr. Thomas Hesketh from Eurocham and Mr. Sok Kha from Swisscontact.
Among the fifteen qualifying SMEs, SHE Agrocam, Sela Pepper and Taing Eanghout Rice Mill were awarded cash prizes. These three SMEs along with Sokunthea Natural Rice and Agrihouse Co., Ltd. will also get an opportunity to go on a study tour in 2023.
On that note, the program will be continued into 2023 to extend the capacity and network building activities to provincial levels and thus upscaling the positive impacts to a lot more SMEs. Among the planned activities of the new phase of the program in 2023 include multiple national roadshow events across the country, to sensitize the SPEC and facilitate peer exchange and trainings by the champions to other SMEs in the provinces, and a Policy Dialogue Workshop on Boosting Export through Small Package Exports by Cambodia’s SMEs.