HR&S LEAN Business Model - Dec 2023

Lean start-up business model canvas

Business model canvases focus on the infrastructure of a business, while Lean Canvases start with a problem and work toward a solution using an actionable template.

  1. Problem
  2. Solution
  3. Key metrics
  4. Unique Value Proposition
  5. Unfair advantage
  6. Channels
  7. Customer segment
  8. Cost structure
  9. Revenue stream

1. Problem

A lean startup plan starts by identifying a problem. It may be a good idea to start by identifying one to three problems and listing them in your Lean Canvas. The intention of starting your business plan with a list of problems is to ensure there is a market for your product.

  1. The number of extremely poor people in sub-Sahara Africa increases with many millions every year. They lack salaries.
  2. Institutions in sub-Sahara Africa tend to lack management strategies for a sustainable development. We lack research, innovations and enterprising.
  3. The aid industry does not target salaries but donor dependent NGOs and tend to lack management strategies for extreme poverty eradication.

2. Solution

Your startup’s task is to create a solution to the problem(s) you’ve identified. This section of your Lean Canvas outlines the solution for each problem you posted in the first section. Keep your solutions concise and easily digestible.

Include a minimum viable product (MVP) that coincides with your proposed solution. (A MVP, is a product or service that has just enough basic features to attract some early-adopting users in order to validate a product idea as quickly and easily as possible.)

  1. Empower i) local micro entrepreneurs and saving-loan arrangements to scale, ii)  institutions that serve the underserved communities with loans, iii) small and medium size entrepreneurs that offer products, services and employments requested for by the community.
    Offer micro, small and medium size business loans and on-site guidance. Encourage the registration of the businesses.
  2. Offer management strategies, training, coaching and an application, to local academia, laboratories, and entrepreneurs.
  3. Offer management strategies to development institutions targeting research business and trade, development banks and the international private sector operating in SSA. Offer management strategy training, coaching, an application, network trough local HR&S Branches and CSR events.
1. Free on hour seminar expecting to lead to paid for 3 h training, SEK 10,000.
2. CSR on-line, or at the HR&S office on-site when the company staff helps solving challenges of local RISEmembers, SEK 20,000.

3. Key Metrics

Key metrics, the numbers that tell you how your business is performing, vary depending on your startup model and product. For example, some startups may include an ideal subscription percentage, while others may include an ideal amount of downloads in the first week. These goals will be used as a point of reference for you and your investors to assess your startup’s viability and success.

  1. Number of entrepreneurs, size of loans given out.
    Number of entrepreneurs paying back timely, size of income generated through interest.
    Number of RISEtalks, % of entrepreneurs participating in RISEtalks, size of income generated through RISEmember fees. 
  2. Number of paying local partners, size of income generated through services.
  3. Number of paying partners, size of income generated through services.

4. Unique Value Proposition

Describe in a single sentence why your startup is unique and valuable. Ideally, your unique value proposition will demonstrate to customers the promise that your startup solves their problem in an easily marketable way. “We help (target customer) who has (problem) with (solution).

  • Strategies that empower research innovation products and salaries in SSA ?
  • Salaries for everyone ?
  • We invest in research, innovation and social enterprising in Africa – RISEafrica

4. Unique Value Proposition

Describe in a single sentence why your startup is unique and valuable. Ideally, your unique value proposition will demonstrate to customers the promise that your startup solves their problem in an easily marketable way. “We help (target customer) who has (problem) with (solution).

  • Strategies that empower research innovation products and salaries in SSA ?
  • Salaries for everyone ?
  • We invest in research, innovation and social enterprising in Africa – RISEafrica

5. Unfair Advantage

What gives your startup a competitive advantage? Describe the edge your startup has that cannot be bought or copied by others — setting you apart from your competition.

    1. We have 25 years of experience from on-site collaboration and we have
    2. Country Branches registered in eight SSA countries.
    3. We target extreme poverty eradication through research innovation and social enterprising. 
    4. We fundraise for business-loan capital through our sister organisation Action10, which is volunteer driven.
    5. We address the  challenges of our partners.
    6. We operate with a strategy for change targeting a change of mind-set concerning the expectation of donations as well as corruption being a social norm.
    7. We define quantitative indicators as we design our programmes and measure progress or ot progress real-time while taking informed decisions.
    8. We translate successful procedures into standard operations and benefit from those in our Good Management Strategies.
    9. We seek evidence for sustainable impact or no impact.

6. Channels

List the marketing strategy you’re planning to use to attract customers. This can be inbound or outbound channels to reach customers.

    1. Website
    2. LinkedIn
      • own page and interactions with others.
    3. YouTube training videos.
    4. Pitch presentation / print-out
    5. Pro bono presentations, and then bring the pitch
      • within present network
    6. Reach-out pitch calls & meetings.
      • Identify targets through CRM databases.
    7. Publications
    8. Attend seminars

7. Customer Segments

Establishing your target market is absolutely essential to effectively marketing your product and keeping your startup afloat. Include your target customers as well as early adopters (otherwise known as the ideal customers) that your startup will initially appeal to.

    1. Development banks
      • AfDB, WorldBank.
    2. Development institutions targeting research, innovation and social enterprising
      • OPCW, SidaForsk.
    3. Private sector CSR.
      • Direct contacts
    4. Private sector with engagement in development and in SSA.
      • Sida’s list, direct contacts

8. Cost Structure

What your startup will be paying continuously without change (fixed costs) as well as costs that can change over time (variable costs) should be listed here. Essentially, any expense your startup will incur doing business should be considered in the cost structure to budget accurately and secure the necessary funding.

  • Office
  • Bank/website/auditing
  • Website improvement
  • Application development
  • Seminar attendance
  • Salaries
  • Employee support

(Included in paid for programme budget, travels and events)


9. Revenue Streams

You know your costs. Now, you need to make a list of the revenue streams you have to cash roll your startup. These are your revenue streams, and they can be anything from business loans to venture capital.

  • Private financing
  • 3 h trainings,  SEK 10.000
  • CSR events, SEK 20.000
  • Programme partnerships


HR&S operates in Sub-Sahara Africa and
i) fights extreme poverty by serving under-served communities through social enterprising, and
ii) empowers scientific research, innovation & business through training, coaching, and business loans.

Key benefits

  1. Eradicating extreme poverty in SSA.
    • Partner with entrepreneurs in under-served communities – our programmes.
    • Partner with change-makers in SSA – our programmes
  2. Empowering scientific research, innovation and social enterprising in SSA.
    • RISE Centres.
    • Coaches and expert advisers.
    • Soft-loans.
    • Accountability management.
  3. Establishing fair business deals between OECD and SSA.
    • Seminars, workshops and coaching.
  4. Increasing cross-cultural awareness.
    • Action10.
    • Knowledge sharing sessions.

The challenge & the solution

Extreme poverty remains high in sub-Saharan Africa and the number of extremely poor people in this region is increasing every year. According to United Nations among the 736 million people who lived on less than $1.90 a day in 2015, 413 million were in sub-Saharan Africa (UN, Department of Economic and Social Affairs, Statistics Division, 2019, Forecasts suggest that without significant shifts in policy, extreme poverty will still be severe in sub-Saharan Africa by 2030. Without a sound economy, lower-income countries are hindered to build social security for its people.

The Founder of HR&S claims that social enterprising addresses many of the basic needs of humankind; profit for the owner; employment, services, and products for the community; as well as tax enabling the government to build social security systems. Thus, HR&S provides researchers, innovators, and social entrepreneurs in Sub-Sahara African countries with the opportunities required for them to implement their development ideas. The challenges are related to poverty-driven corruption as well as post-colonial structures including the Aid industry. HR&S has developed PracticalStrategies and ActionAreas to address those challenges. The six PracticalStrategies and nine ActionAreas interdepend and are addressed simultaneously why HR&S has developed step-by-step structures that are easy to follow and easy to measure. The HR&S programmes are successful, the interventions are appreciated locally and lessons learned inform decisions. HR&S offers seminars, workshops, coaching, expert advice, soft loans, internet access, networking, and collaboration platforms.

Competitive advantage

HR&S has 20 years of experience and a unique set of Practical Strategies and ActionAreas. We have a local presence through our support centres in six SSA countries. The Centres are managed by four local coaches trained on evaluation planning, survey management, public relations, and accounting and a professional auditor. We have ten pilot-scale social businesses up and running in partnership with under-served communities, have experience from research management and laboratory management coaching.

Our slogan

Truth and trust – a shift of paradigm.

Partnership offer

HR&S has been in operation on a volunteer basis for five years since registration. In collaboration with Action10 has the concept been developed and tested in actual practice.
For 2021 we are ready to scale up by employing on short-term contracts, and the interest is high. We benefit from Action10 as a training platform and an opportunity to examine mutual understanding or not.
The purpose for 2021 is seminars, workshop and international coaching as well as soft loans and local coaching to a few new RISE members. This has to be combined with secured internet access for the RISE centres. Besides the benefit with knowledge sharing the purpose is to show-case our capacity and connect to customers.

Euro 30,000 annually

Six 10-h webinars  every year.

Euro 50,000 annually

Keeping RISEinvest, coaches and RISE Centre computers, cellphones, internet and electricity.

Business Model - 2022

The HR&S business model is carefully described, for two reasons. One reason is for potential supports and customers to understand the business setup, for example how HR&S is both for-profit and not-for-profit. The second reason is to guide HR&S local RISE Support Centre about the HR&S business modelling.  

We use the principles of lean manufacturing and have developed the HR&S Business System.

Based on the HR&S’s core values, the HR&S System drives the company through a iterative cycle of innovations, lessons learned, informed decisions, change and improvement: our amazing team, develop excellent plans, and execute them using the best tools available, to construct effective and efficient processes, resulting in outstanding performance that generates sustainable impact of social good. Outstanding performance attracts amazing team-members who copy and scale the HR&S system. Guiding all efforts are the HR&S ActionAreas grounded in customer attention priorities: social good, sustainable economy, quality, delivery, and innovation.

HR&S services

  1. Training & coaching on management strategies addressing our four areas of core expertise.

    Reaching out
    -We reach out to institution managements and establish contact in order to present how exactly our management strategy can be used to develop a road-map to set and reach targets.
    -We seek tenders in our target countries offering training on programme management and the scientific method.
    -We seek tenders in Sweden offering training in Sub-Sahara Africa (and elsewhere) on programme management and the scientific.

  1. A platform for communication and knowledge sharing among key stakeholders.
  2. Soft-loan to social entrepreneurs.
  3. Coordination, support & training of local coaches and auditors. 
  4. Advice by senior experts.

HR&S offers to be a solid platform for bringing stakeholders together in fruitful discussions. HR&S bridges knowledge sharing gaps and communication challenges.
One such meeting platform between key stakeholders is our workshops series. The workshop series address research management, laboratory management, social enterprising and development programme management. HR&S also offers tailor-made coaching on the topics addressed in the workshops.
The workshops and coaching entail compiling and addressing the necessary conditions required to bring about a given impact. The ambitions are compiled as well as related challenges. Strategies for addressing the challenges are agreed on, and the different activities addressed together until the expected impact has been reached.
Stakeholders are also offered support through the local HR&S RISE Support Centres. The RISE Centres offer the resources, coaching, expert advice and soft loans required for local researchers, innovators and social entrepreneurs to implement their ideas.

Shift of paradigm

The HR&S overall take is the transformation from aid dependency to autonomous scientific research, innovation  & social enterprising for development.  The expected impact is a decreased number of extremely poor people in Sub-Sahara Africa.  HR&S claims to be a significant stakeholder in a shift of paradigm.

HR&S acknowledges and respects the cross-cultural environment we are in and do not impose values across cultures, that is why we build on user-driven programmes. We partner with passionate change-makers who are driving positive local development change and we work with solving this change-maker’s outcome challenges. When a Strategy for Change has been agreed on between HR&S and the local partner change-maker, then the partners together address the aspect of large-scale transformation to change mind-set and behaviour. In order to have an impact, it is necessary to involve all stakeholders with the power to influence the transformation, why stakeholder analysis is part of the method. The HR&S work is done through social enterprising, which makes sense for two reasons; sustainable economy and testing the product – as customers only buy what they really want, while aid donations are accepted widely. 

unsplash - passion

We deeply and honestly strive to meet our partners’ and our customers’ need and to facilitate what our partners and customers seek to accomplish. We put effort into achieving and maintaining a deep understanding of who our partners and customers are, what their behaviors are, and ultimately, what their motivations are and to take these deep understandings and align them with the goals and capabilities of ours. We have ambitious and deep core values that we honour.

Innovation & Impact

The HR&S intervention meaningfully improves the lives of underserved communities. Underserved communities are internationally often characterised as those living on less than $5 PPP per day. The HR&S innovation has the potential to deliver substantially greater results per invested amount of money than standard development practices. HR&S has six key arguments for this claim:

  1. The financial system is based on the private social business sector rather than donations to associations. Associations receiving aid support tend to become both donor-driven and donor-dependent. The private sector on the other hand has the potential to generate money that will sustain them financially, offer paid employment, as well as pay tax to the government; which in the long-run will enable governments to install social security systems for their people.
  2. The social good is delivered through social enterprising enabling direct measurement of whether the target communities appreciate the effort or not; will they buy the product?
  3. The implementation is user-driven; it is the community and the social entrepreneurs that decided on the products and customer channels, rather than aid organisations trying to understand what people want and need elsewhere and how their expected needs shall be met.
  4. The accountability is ensured by engaging in the agency for change, ensuring that partners will benefit from the truth and trust approach, and collaboration with local coaches and auditors to explain the benefit of change.
  5. The political aid agenda with hidden agendas and inefficient aid structures is avoided through that the Swedish partner is an independent and flexible social enterprise itself, free from political pressure.
  6. The wide set of interdependent parameters is managed through an ambitious box of tools developed through 20 years of practical experience combined with continuous and real-time outcome evaluation and planning. The tools box contains practical strategies and action areas thoroughly presented at
HR&S is unique in that we do reach the under-served communities, those living on less than $5 PPP per day and even less than $2 PPP per day. HR&S manages this through an ambitious and unique framework of Practical Strategies and Action Areas. Through this set of tools we capture i) core values;  such as trust, accountability,  and cross-cultural understanding, ii) sustainability through for example business income, soft-loans, accountability coaching, and business training and iii) local relevance through local user-driven initiatives and paid for products. The evidence of impact to back this claim is the results from ten years of pilot programmes. The results are compiled on the HR&S website and in annual reports. The results are analysed using the HR&S tool ROPE and surveys are performed through the HR&S tool TestE. At HR&S we distinguish between output, outcome, and impact. The Outputs are quantified results of the Activities and the partners are in control over Outputs. The outcomes are actions taken by different stakeholders as a result of the Activities. We define Impact as Outcomes that have become sustainable over time and does not require backup from the programme to be sustainable. Outcome and impact are quantitatively measurable through our Progress Markers; indicators defined at the time of program design.  The programme management partners are not in control over Outcomes nor Impact. The output, outcome, and impact are compiled per programme at each webpage.
The HR&S innovation both challenges and improves on business as usual. The HR&S business model allows us to i) have a bigger impact on behaviour than alternatives AND reach a poorer income segment. The HR&S overall goal is the transformation from aid dependency to autonomous social enterprising for development. The expected impact is a sustainable decrease of the  number of extremely poor people in Sub-Sahara Africa.  The HR&S work is done through social enterprising, which makes sense for two reasons; sustainable economy and testing the product – as customers only buy what they really want, while aid donations are accepted widely.

Large-scale change is difficult and today’s dynamic environment adds an extra level of complexity.  Basford, T and  Schaninger, B (2016) claim that there are four key actions to change mindsets and behavior; fostering understanding and conviction, reinforcing changes through formal mechanisms, developing talent and skills, and role modeling. The authors argue that it can be expected that a person reflects and acts according to a certain logic; “I will change my mind-set and behavior if”…i) “I understand what is being asked of me and it makes sense…”(fostering understanding and conviction), ii) ” I see that our structures, processes, and systems support the change that I am being asked to make” (reinforcing changes through formal mechanisms), iii) “I have the skills and opportunities to behave in the new way” (developing talent and skills), and iv)” I see my leaders, colleagues, and staff behaving differently” (role modeling). The findings of Basford and Schaninger are well integrated with the HR&S approach. Fostering understanding and conviction: HR&S acknowledges and respects the cross-cultural environment we are in and do not impose values across cultures, that is why we build on user-driven programmes. We partner with passionate change-makers who are driving positive local development change and work together with solving this change-maker’s outcome challenges. When a Strategy for Change has been agreed on between HR&S and the local partner change-maker, then the partners together address the aspect of large-scale transformation to change mind-set and behaviour. In order to have an impact, it is necessary to involve all stakeholders with the power to influence the transformation, why stakeholder analysis is part of the method. Reinforcing changes through formal mechanisms: HR&S has developed Practical Strategies and Action Areas during ten years of piloting the business idea. Developing talent and skills: HR&S offers four areas of training, all building on the Practical Strategies and Action Areas; research management, laboratory management, social business management, and development programme management. Role modeling: HR&S operates locally through Research, Innovation and Social Enterprising (RISE) support Centres managed and driven by four local coaches and one professional accountant. The coaches guide local change-makers on evaluation planning, evidence based impact assessment, branding & public relations, and accounting.

unsplash - impact

Evidence of impact As one of the steps in the transition from aid dependency and donor-driven programmes to autonomous social enterprises is the replacement of so called “success stories” with evidence based impact. It is actually very easy to collect success stories from people benefitting from donations. Both the organisation distributing the donation and the receivers of the donations have a common interest in delivering “success stories”. Evidence-based impact assessment, on the other hand, builds on quantitative evidence that the innovation improves on business a usual. This evidence is generated via a randomized controlled trial combined with quantitative assessments that use other strategies to identify the causal impact of the HR&S approach relative to a comparable control group. HR&S has developed TestE, building on the ROPE tool, for this purpose. The work has not yet reached far enough to having generated quantitative impact evidence, but we do have quantitative evidence of the outcome. As HR&S scales, the programme will in parallel be supported by more robust evidence of impact.

The HR&S innovation target people in Sub-Sahara Africa living on less than the equivalent of $5 PPP* per day, and we are especially targeting people living on less than $2 PPP per day. These are our Target Partners. HR&S has, together with our team of partners, a deep understanding of who our Target Partners are. The HR&S team of partners constitutes of i) local social entrepreneurs, people with passion for development, sustainable economy and who are part of the local network, ii) local coaches and auditors who are trained on the HR&S tools and who coaches the social entrepreneurs, iii) local scientific researchers and innovators who have scientific findings and innovations ready to be implemented through social enterprising. It is the local social entrepreneurs who have the direct link to the extremely poor and they have this link through their own community. Thre HR&S staff in Sweden and the HR&S local coaches supports the local social entrepreneurs to overcome their challenges, so that the implementation of their ideas is as smooth as possible. HR&S develop contact and supports the local social entreprenurs through the HR&S local RISE Centres and through its local coaches. HR&S develop contact with the scientific researchers through research management workshops implemented through local scientific institutions and the local coaches. Through the research management workshops, HR&S has the opportunity to support scientific institutions with addressing the challenges of the researchers, so that they can perform their research as smooth as possible.

Thus, the impact has already been tested and HR&S is seeking financial support to strengthen the impact.


Basford, T. and  Schaninger, B. (2016) The four building blocks of change. McKinsey Quarterly. Accessed 8 Feb 2021,–of-change.

Purchasing power parities (PPPs) are the rates of currency conversion that try to equalise the purchasing power of different currencies, by eliminating the differences in price levels between countries. The basket of goods and services priced is a sample of all those that are part of final expenditures: final consumption of households and government, fixed capital formation, and net exports. This indicator is measured in terms of national currency per US dollar.  PPP prices are different from market prices. Please see the World Bank website for more information on how to calculate incomes in PPP terms.

Measuring success & sharing lessons learned

HR&S is committed to evaluating our own success and also our own mistakes and failures, and we have thorough procedures in place to collect data and feedback to help inform decisions. This includes operational monitoring and evaluation, as well as impact evaluation. Among the procedures, there are especially three tools that are dedicated to the learning from lessons; the “Real-time outcome planning and evaluation (ROPE) tool, the Strategy for Change (SfC) tool, and the “Testing the Strength of Evidence” (TestE) tool.

A new ROPE programme starts with setting a goal and developing indicators to measure results. Then we develop an implementation plan, we secure finances, staff, and infrastructure, then we ensure knowledge sharing, the accounting procedures and the cross-cultural understanding. Thereafter we make an activity plan and assign people and institutions; who will do what, how and when. Now we implement, while in parallel we measure the results and analyse. Thereafter we revise the programme plan according to lessons learned and continue until we reach the goal we set up in the beginning. The HR&S tool Strategy for Change (SfC) is essentially a comprehensive description and illustration of how and why the desired change is expected to happen in a particular context.  Thus, the SfC aims at defining all of the necessary conditions required to bring about impact, and it also points out which conditions are sufficient. The Strategy for Change presents the connections between Impact, Outcome, Output, Milestones and Input, as well as Outcome challenges, Progress markers, Baseline (micro and macro), and Source of Evidence; all compiled per Ambition. The TestE tool for assessing if outcome and impact have been reached is based on evidence. We aim for scientifically sound evidence and to benefit from a control, randomization, quantitative statistics, qualitative probability assessment, and contribution tracing. We compile evidence for each expected outcome and each expected impact. The strongest cases use multiple forms of evidence, some addressing the weaknesses of others. Reported effects should be plausible as outcomes of the programme activities and consistent with the Strategy for Change and the observations compiled as evidence should be easier to reconcile with the programme’s claims than with other possible explanations. It is of no importance whether an outcome was achieved or not, this is plain testing of evidence with no bias. Lessons learned on lack of outcome is as important. The key aspects of our surveys are change and sustainability. Concerning change we measure two aspects; i) contribution tracing; is it our programme that causes the change, and ii) outcome; do we reach the outcome? The measurement of change needs a reference.  The contribution tracing measures against control, the control can be a randomized population that did not take part in the programme.  Measurement of change can also benefit from the macro survey, how is the situation elsewhere at large, in the region, in the country, in the world?  The outcome also measures against the base-line, thus the situation within the population prior to the initiation of the programme. Outcome benefits from progress markers that are identified during the planning stage of a new programme. Concerning sustainability, we also measure two aspects; i) institutional capacity and ii) financial balance. Institutional capacity is a wide concept that covers all aspects of the programme management’s ability to maintain the programme. Financial balance measures whether the income from the programme, without donations, are more than the costs. Sustainability is with the ROPE terminology referred to as the impact.

unsplash - doctor

Collecting, compiling & reviewing data

Survey data are collected by the Programme managers supported by specially assigned local survey management coaches. The Survey managegement coaches are backed up by evaluation planning coaches, accounting coaches and public relation coaches. Data is then compiled and reviewed during during monthly on-line meetings and informs every decision made. Monthly meetings are arranged per country and also all countries together. The review is framed by the Strategy for Change.

Sharing data with the public

Monitoring data is up-loaded real-time and per programme on our website. All infromation is available, the successes and the mistakes. During the year, the raw-data is available on the site. This material is compiled by the end of the year and transferred to the year’s annual report, which is also available to down-load from the web-site. Through this procedure everything is avalibale to the public in a orderly and fully transparent manner.
HR&S also posts news, reflections and events through Facebook and LinkedIn.
HR&S offers monthly public events where Practical Strategies, Action Areas, Programme achievements and reflections are shared.

Procedure strengthening

As we are in the scaling phase from the piloting process, we are still fine-tuning the TestE, while at the same time in the early phase of implementing it on ground and collecting data. ROPE and SfC on the other hand have been thoroughly tested and revised for many years and can be claimed to be solid.
We are also in the early stage of developing an Application “RISEsupport“. Monitoring data shall eventually be uploaded real-time on, a designated IT platform accessible through computers, tablets, and cell phones, which survey managers can use when being in the field to directly send and store survey data, testimonies, photos and videos. This matieral can then be shared by the programme managers and jointly evaluated to assess outcome and impact and inform decisions. We shall offer to our partners thus enabling efficient communication around tools, strategies, and results.
HR&S is also deveping another Application that offers videos presenting the HR&S Practical Strategies. This App will be free for programme partners and can be purchased by customers.

Potential to Scale

All our interventions are user-driven. This means that it is the researcher, innovator or social entrepreneur that has the passion to implement an intervention that brings the idea to the partnership. The idea is then backed-up by the resources of HR&S including practical strategies, state-of-the-art knowledge and expertise, experience, local coaching, and start-up financial loans.

Adapting to change

HR&S is also very awarer of that times and norms are rapidly changing;  technology changes, priorities change, and people change, and being adaptable to these changes, and understanding how it affects people is critical for HR&S.

Concerning scaling in actual practice, the intervention to scale, HR&S is prepared to have  operational, financial and social viability at scale.

Operational viability at scale

The facilitation structure is based on local Research Innovation & Social Enterprising (RISE) support Centres, monthly training 10-hour webinars and on-line knowledge sharing meetings. The Centres offers local coaching, soft-loans, meeting venues and in the near future, good computers, internet, electricity and co-working space. To-day each Centre has four coaches and one auditor attached. Researchers, innovators and social entrepreneurs are welcome to become members of the RISE Centres. The monthly webinars are offered from HR&S Sweden and target research management, laboratory management, social enterprising management and development programme management. The monthly knowledge-sharing meetings are hosted by HR&S Sweden and bring up issues brought forward by the stakeholders. HR&S has a team of researchers who collects the state-of-the-art information and shares an introduction prior to that the meeting’s stakeholders discuss and share their knowledge.

We can today offer HR&S RISE Support Centres in Burkina Faso, Kenya, Liberia, Nigeria, Togo, and Uganda. To-day, during the piloting phase, each of the Centre has one or two members. Each member social entrepreneur is expected to reach several hundreds of customers in the under-served communities, people living on less than $5 PPP a day and often less than $2 PPP per day. Each customer has a family of maybe ten members that also directly benefit from the outreach. Thus we already reach 10,000 people. The products already offered through our entrepreneurs are, as a result of our strategy, wide and locally chosen; sanitary pads, fashion clothes, hairdressing, cold storage, computer training, laboratory sample analyses, education for grown-ups in the English language, soft-business loans and coaching, trauma counselling, and employment.

The obvious scaling is to increase the number of members and also the number of Centres. With ten Centres and ten members each reaching 300 customers with families we already reach 300,000 persons. This can be reached within three years time. Five years from now, we have the potential to scale to 20 Centres with 20 members each and reach more that one million under-served. The structure shall scale until we have enough Centres, maybe five or ten, in each Sub-Saharan country (48)  with 20 members in each (or more), thus potentially 30 million people.

HR&S is already seeking opportunities to establish RISE Centres in Bénin, Ghana, Tanzania, Zambia, and Zimbabwe. Key to scaling is to partner with the agency for change. Agency for change is key stakeholders with a passion for change. We target for example social entrepreneurs with potential for profit (but not business as usual), passionate scientific researchers and innovators with findings ready to be implemented, policymakers with power and passion for positive development.

Social viability at scale

The strength of the HR&S approach is that the initiatives are locally adapted, they are asked for by the local community, the network for implementation is already laid out. The benefit is also that we build on local talents and a sustainable economy why the initiatives have the potential for being sustainable. The challenges are that we are vulnerably dependent on a deeply corrupt system. Our challenges are related to a lack of truth, trust, harmony, equity, transparency, and accountability. The strength of HR&S is actually to have the capacity to manage this. Like mentioned before, we have developed the tools and we are cautious with developing a team that agrees with and benefits from trust and accountability

unsplash - construction crane

Financial viability at scale

Even though HR&S is not currently at scale HR&S has explored who would likely implement and pay for the innovation at scale. The findings are that HR&S has a value proposition that matches the needs of four main customer segments; i) the academic sector in SSA, ii) social entrepreneurs in SSA, iii) the local governments, other local regulatory bodies, the development & private sector, and iv) supporters, philanthropic organisations, and other firms with an over-lapping mission. After a thorough evaluation combined with customer surveys, performed by HR&S, Action10 and the RISE Centres, in order to identify the HR&S ideal customer hypothesis, HR&S has diversified its four main customer segments into; Full Buyers, Medium Buyers, and Beneficiary Buyers, related to the customer segment’s expected capacity to pay for the cost of the service. The logic is that even though not all of the HR&S customers do have the capacity to pay the full price, as HR&S is a social business, these people are still important customers. Instead of giving products and services for free to beneficiary buyers, in order to stay out of the Aid sector loop, we set prices according to the payment capacity of the buyers.  This has the benefit of filtering out stakeholders who have money as motivation. In addition, beneficiary buyers can be many and the group financial contribution can be to some extent meaningful. The Medium and Beneficiary Buyers are often located in our target countries and may also act as entry points to Full Buyers.


  • National development institutions
  • Ministry and national institution related to development or research
  • International development Institutions
  • Business support within the Aid sector
  • Research support within the Aid sector
  • Traditional Aid; charities, Sida main-stream, Swedish embassies.
  • Private sector
  • Manufacturers & Suppliers of scientific equipment
  • The foreign and local private sector, other, R&D
  • People & institutions seeking knowledge


  • Academic institutions in SSA
  • Top & middle management Research
  • Top & middle management Laboratories
  • The private sector in SSA
  • Laboratories
  • NGOs in SSA


  • Researcher & technicians in SSA
  • Social entrepreneurs in SSA
  • RISE Centre members
  • Supporters
  • ActionInvest, monthly givers, and crowd-funding – Action10
  • Crowd-funding platforms for business
  • Major givers – private or institutions
  • HR&S Shop customers

The Team

The HR&S team is composed of dedicated and professional experts, with a deep understanding and unyielding ethics. Our team cover the wide range of expertise required for our ambitions mission; the local context, development, scientific research, scientific finding, innovation, enterprising, accounting, cross-cultural understanding and more.

Expertise & capabilities

The HR&S team has the relevant expertise and capabilities to achieve success. Team members have cross-cultural understanding and respect, change-makers mindset, internal motivation, as well as transparency, accountability, truth, trust, equity, harmony, and resilience. HR&S team members are carefully selected and go through a trial period before being accepted.


The task is obviously both ambitious and challenging. Each team members have a very clear and defined role. The areas we cover are i) evaluation planning, ii)  sustainable economy, iii) institutional capacity, iv) quality values and v) knowledge sharing.

Resonsability & time-commitment

Responsibility and time-commitment are regulated through the ROPE tool that is always framing the HR&S work. Each team member is assigned to a minimum of one Activity which is operationally broken down to Milestones and measured through Output, Outcome, Progress markers, and Impact.

Awareness about local conditions

It is key to success that the HR&S team has a strong knowledge of the problems that HR&S is addressing and what approaches are likely to work in the local environment surrounding the HR&S innovation (e.g. operational, geographical, political, and social context). It is especially important that the HR&S team has the ability to identify and respond to risks and changes that are likely to arise as growth is achieved. The awareness about the local conditions is ensured through the HR&S team of five local coaches in each country, as well as through the HR&S user-driven approach, where it is always a local stakeholder who is developing and implementing the programmes. Moreover, many of the expert advisers have local knowledge. The HR&S staff and volunteers have relevant knowledge and also receive continious training.

Honouring the national development plan, the civil society strategies & the private sector operations

HR&S acts as a support to the local authorities in their strives to implement positive development and social good. Thus, the HR&S activities are in coordination with the national development plans, and the HR&S interventions are effectively discussed with partners in government, private sector, and community leaders. HR&S always shows respect for and coordinate with local authorities and leaders. The HR&S seeks every opportunity to engage effectively with partners in the government, the academic management, private sector, and community leaders. 

Lesson learned informed decisions

The HR&S team has a strong commitment to driving the innovation forward, with openness and ability to pivot or adjust the HR&S strategies as needed. The team benefits from the ROPE and the TestE strategy to ensure this. Also, a large amount of frequent (weekly) on-line meetings and continuous discussions in WhatsApp chat groups proves and maintains the drive. Each RISE Centre has scheduled monthly zoom meetings with HR&S Sweden as well as a monthly knowledge sharing meeting open for every stakeholder. HR&S has monthly zoom meetings with Action10.  The participants of the monthly zoom meetings are also members of a WhatsApp chat group that sustains the discussions between meetings.  Each programme has its own WhatsApp chat group where also HR&S Sweden and the local coaches are members. The local coaches have regular on-site meetings with the local programme managers addressing their area of coaching. Survey managers frequently visit the field-sites for data collection reasons. HR&S Sweden normally visits each Centre  a year and stays a few days in order to meet and discuss with coaches, programme managers, stakeholders in the government, academic sector, private sector, beneficiaries, and the Swedish Embassy.

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The scaling up

Pilot stage: 1000 target partners & 10,000 beneficiaries

Today, HR&S has six RISE Centres in six countries and ten programmes. We reach 1000 target partners directly, and expect to reach 10,000 persons indirectly. Assume for example a mother can make he small business profitable, and can sustain her children and siblings to go to school and have access to hospital care. The operations and outcome are satisfactory. 

Scaled-up stage: 10,000 target partners & 100,000 beneficiaries

At later stages of development, after the present pilor stage, the team shall have the capacity to also run the scaled-up programme. This will be handleled through increasing the number of RISE Support Centres, both within a country and also by including also other countries in the programme. Each centre shall manage a larger number of programmes. For the scaled-up stage we can expect 20 centres with ten programmes each, thus 200 programmes. If each programme reaches 500 target partners we can expect 10,000 target partners, who each may affect maybe 10 persons around them.  The same structure will be copied at each sites; the same  management, operational, and evaluation structures. Training, coordination and communication will be strengthened and very well managed, thus ensureing capabilities needed to scale up the innovation.

Full programme: 100,000 target partners & millions of beneficiaries

Sub-Sahara Africa has 46 countries. For the full programme we can expect maybe 100 RISE centres with ten-twenty programmes each that will reach 100,000 target partners.programmes.

Team members

Headquarters in Sweden, Advisory Board & Expert Advisers

RISE Support Centres in Africa, coaches & members


Value proposition


Ten hours and examination.
Five sessions; 1st and last session with the local RISE Centres and in between on-line sessions by HR&S Sweden. 1st session is an introduction and the last session is the examination. Four home-works in between the sessions.
Output: Personal and/or institutional strategy for change strategy as well as a Certificate, if passing the examination.
Expected outcome: Achieving a minimum of one personal and/or institutional ambition.
Topics: Research, laboratory, social enterprise and development programme management.
Target audience: Researchers, academic management, technicians, suppliers of scientific equipment, innovators, social entrepreneurs and development institution staff and management.
Price: EUR 5,000

Seminars available on App

Under development.

Research management coaching

We target 1. Individual career goals. 2. Performing high-quality research. 3. Disseminating scientific findings. 4. Implementing scientific findings. 5. Enabling talents of Africa.
We address 1. Motivation to do research, 2. Time management, 3. Collaboration & networking, 3. Theoretical research capacity, 4. Practical research capacity, 5. Capacity to address the needs of the rural and urban civil society, 6. Business development capacity.

Laboratory  management coaching

Through our network of manufacturers can we offer quality products, sometimes to a discounted rate; Chemicals, Consumables, Accessories, Laboratory equipment.

We support scientific institutions with: selection, transportation, installation, calibration, operation, maintenance, servicing, use and decommissioning of advanced scientific equipment.
Support packages:
1. Equipment procurement and delivery.
2. Equipment management.
3. Construction of laboratories.
4. Operational & Financial planning.

Social entrepreneurial Coaching

We support researchers, innovators and social entrepreneurs in Sub-Sahara African countries to implement their ideas through social enterprising. Our RISE Support Centres (Research, Innovation & Social Enterprising) aim at providing the conditions and the tools required. Also, loan-taker mini-courses and workshops.
HR&S RISE Support Centre membership: Our local RISE Centres addresses local social entrepreneurs and offers tools for them to be able to impement their ideas; start- and scale-up loans, coaching on evaluation planning, survey management, public relations and accounting, expert advice, state-of-the art reviews, access to products and other services, access to satellite internet, co-working space, local coaching.

Support & Reward

Empower the RISE Centres,
the not-for-profit side of HR&S.

Coaches: coaches training, reimbursement, venue, IT support; computers, cell phones, internet and electricity
RISE members:
RISEinvest, training, coaching, expert advice and IT support.

Donate: We offer an opportunity to donate to our RISEinvest fund and RISE Centres. The fund enable us to offer Start-up capital to our local social entrepreneurs. The offer is a loan and is paid back with 10% interest, and is then reinvested in another opportunity.
Volunteer: We offer volunteer and internship assignments at our office in Stockholm. Eligible volunteers must have deep cross-cultural understanding and personal experience.
HR&S Shop: We sell products produced by our partners in our HR&S Shop. This gives the byer an opportunity to know the histrory behid the product and support the development process.
Quaterly Seminars & Workshops

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All programmes

  • Programme evaluation planning.
  • Accountability management.
  • Survey management.
  • Leadership & team-management.


We deeply and honestly strive to meet our partners’ and our customers’ need and to facilitate what our partners and customers seek to accomplish. We put effort into achieve and maintain a deep understanding of who our partners and customers are, what their behaviors are, and ultimately, what their motivations are and to take these deep understandings and align them with the goals and capabilities of ours.

Availiability & Communication

  • HR&S aims to thoroughly present our mission at our web-site.
  • To share about our values & news and engage in discussions on  LinkedIn, Facebook & Twitter.
  • We arrange open seminars and workshops in Stockholm and at our RISE Centres in African countries.
  • We are available to book, at seminar booking sites in Sweden.
  • We also reply to calls from development organisations.

2021 Visibility

Workshops and seminars on

  • Research management.
  • Laboratory management.
  • Social entrepreneurship.

The session builds on ROPE and the Strategy for Change tools.
The events shall be parallel customer surveys.

Key Resources

We benefit from our

  • Practical Strategies
  • ActionAreas
  • RISE Centres
  • On-going programmes

to offer coaching seminars and workshops.

We benefit from capital funds

  • ActionInvest
  • RISEinvest
to offer start-up loans and tuition fee loans.
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Revenue streams

Sharing income

If the activity is run through an HR&S RISE Support Centre, then the income is usually shared equally, 50% each, between the RISE Centre and HR&S Sweden.

HR&S RISE Support Centres

Membership fees

RISE Centre members pay a membership fee.

Satellite internet

When funds allow we connect the RISE Centres to satellite internet distributors, such as Econet.  Econet, officially known as Econet Global Ltd, is a diversified telecommunications group with operations and investments in Africa and other continents, offering products and services in the core areas of mobile and fixed telephony services, broadband, satellite, optical fibre networks, and mobile payment. The annual cost is expected to be around Euro 400, and can be covered through ActionInvest and RISEinvest. The  servic:

  • Shall benefit the management, the coaches and the members.
  • Is sold to external customers.
  • Is also offered as a win-win opportunity to institutions hosting a RISE Centre.

Loan-taker screening & training

Each participant pay Euro 10.
The aim is 100 participants = Euro 1,000.
All RISE centres sends their own participants and receives half of the participants fee.
Two sets of courses per year; March and September.

Each participant pay Euro 10.
Co-funding from elsewhere as a donation.

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Key activities


We benefit from our Practical Strategies and ActionAreas to offer coaching.

  • Research management.
  • Laboratory management.
  • Social enterprising.
  • Programme evaluation planning.
  • Accountability management.
  • Survey management.
  • Leadership & team-management.

Seminars and workshops

We benefit from our Practical Strategies, ActionAreas and experience from ongoing programmes to offer seminars and workshops.

  • Extreme poverty eradication.
  • Implementing Change.
  • Cross-cultural collaboration.
  • Managing corruption.
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Access to quality products

Through our network of manufacturers can we offer quality products. Sometimes to a discounted rate.

  • Chemicals.
  • Consumables.
  • Accessories.
  • Laboratory equipment.
  • Other.

Professional expert advice

Through our network of experts can we give advice on any topic.  If we do not have the experts in our team already we will identify the persons.

State-of-the-art report

We perform literature review on any topic to offer state-of-the art review reports.

Social enterprising incubator

Our local RISE Centres addresses local social entrepreneurs and offers tools for them to be able to impement their ideas; start-up loan; coaching on evaluation planning, survey management, public relations and accounting; expert advice; state-of-the art reviews; access to products and other services. 


We sell products produced by our partners in our HR&S Shop. This gives the byer an opportunity to know the histrory behid the product and support the development process.

Opportunity to donate

We offer an opportunity to donate to our RISEinvest fund. The fund enable us to offer Start-up capital to our local social entrepreneurs. The offer is a loan and is paid back with 10% interest, and is then reinvested in another opportunity.

Opportunity to volunteer

We offer volunteer and internship assignments at our office in Stockholm.


Lean canvas

  1. Problem
    What are the problems that our service should solve for customers?
    a. Lack of opportunities for scientific reserchers, innovators and social entreprenuers in Sub-Sahara African countries to develop and implement their ideas.
    b. The international community does not reach Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) .
    The SDGs or Global Goals are a collection of 17 interlinked goals designed to be a “blueprint to achieve a better and more sustainable future for all”. The SDGs, set in 2015 by the United Nations General Assembly and intended to be achieved by the year 2030, are part of a UN Resolution called the “2030 Agenda”.


  2. Solution.
    What do we think is the solution to this problem?
    a. Business loans, coaching, on-line and on-site workshops, state-of-the-art surveys, expert advice, access to specific products and services, access to internet, and co-working space to Target partners
    b. Consultancy coaching, workshops, seminars and RISE Centre services to stakeholders with relations to our Target partners.


  3. The customer’s options.
    How do customers solve their problems today?

    a and b national:  Seek aid donations or give up.
    b international: Give aid to NGOs.


  4. Key figures.
    What measurement values do we want to use to check that we are on the right path?

    a. Three new entrepreneurs per RISE Centre before June 2021.
    b. Three new partners per RISE Centre and five new partners for HR&S Sweden before June 2021.


  5. Unique value proposition.
    What exactly makes our solution worth buying?
    a. Only offer of its kind.
    b. Offering an alternative to aid that has proven successful, at least on a pilot scale.


  6. Our competitive advantage.
    Which one is it?
    A shift of paradigm, breaking new grounds.

7. Customer segment.
What does the ideal customer look like?
a. Social entrepreneurs with a profitable business idea that requires scaling.
b. Development stakeholder assigning a consultancy task, grant, monthly or major donors, shop customers. Academic institutions.

8. Channels.
In what ways can we reach our ideal customer?
a. Social media, flyers, radio, open on-line, and on-site seminars.
b. Seminars, out-reach, grant seeking, crowd-funding platforms, shop.

9. “Early adopters”.
What does the ideal customer who buys first look like?
a. Passionate social entrepreneur with a scalable business idea who values accountability.
b. Buyers of seminars and workshops. Permanent crowd-funding site. Major grant giver.

Business model canvas


Key Activities
The most important activities in executing HR&S´ value proposition.
An example for Bic, the pen manufacturer, would be creating an efficient supply chain to drive down costs.

  • Fundraise for start-up loans.
  • Run RISE centres for public relations and offer business incubators.
  • Run RISE programmes as equal partners.
  • Upgrade & implement PracticalStrategies and ActionAreas.
  • Give seminars and workshops
  • Coach development & academic institutions.

Key Resources
The resources that are necessary to create value for the customer; the  assets to HR&S that are needed to sustain and support the business.


  • HR&S staff & volunteer staff.
  • A10 volunteer staff.
  • RISE Centre Coaches.
  • RISEprogramme Managers.


  • Capital for loans.
  • Capital for back-up security.


  • HR&S HQ office
  • RISE Centre office & venues.


  • PracticalStrategies.
  • ActionAreas.
  • HR&S handles a high level of risk and can fail from time to time, and we make a key activity to learn lessons and not repeat mistakes.

Partner Network

Buyer-supplier relationships

  • Novarum & Talarforum.
  • GlobalGiving & “HR&S crowd-funding platform to be established”.

Strategic alliances

  • ImpactHub.

Complementary joint ventures

  • None
  • Seeking MORE


Value Propositions
The collection of products and services HR&S offers to meet the needs of our customers that distinguishes us from our competitors;
including newness, performance, customization, “getting the job done”, design, brand/status, price, cost reduction, risk reduction, accessibility, and convenience/usability.

Quantitative: price,  efficiency…

  • Efficiency: RISE Centres.

Qualitative: overall customer experience,  outcome…

  • Newness: Local social enterprising reducing poverty.
  • Risk reductions: PracticalStrategies & ActionAreas.
  • Outcome: RISE programmes.


Customer Segments
Our various sets of customers are segmented based on their different needs and attributes to ensure appropriate implementation of the HR&S strategy to meet the characteristics of selected groups of clients.

Mass Market
There is no specific segmentation when HR&S  displays a wide view of potential clients.

Niche Market
Our customer segmentation based on the specialised needs and characteristics of our clients.

  • Social entrepreneurs in SSA.
    Social entrepreneurs in Nigeria
  • Stakeholders in SSA who would requests support with business and research management.
    Academic institutions in SSA: University of Zambia, Nairobi university
    Swedish companies in SSA: Ragnsells
  • Stakeholders who want to see an alternative to aid.
    Moderaterna, ActionInvest givers, RISEinvest givers.
  • Stakeholders who would want the SDG implementation to be more successful.
    Challenge Fund
  • Migration units who want to offer an alternative to poverty forced migration.
  • Stakeholders supporting Swedish private sector.

HR&S applies additional segmentation within an existing customer segment. In the segmented situation, HR&S further distinguishes our clients based on gender, age, and/or income.

HR&S serves multiple customer segments with different needs and characteristics.

Multi-Sided Platform / Market
For a smooth day-to-day business operation, HR&S serves mutually dependent customer segments
e.g. a credit card company provides services to credit card holders while simultaneously assisting merchants who accept those credit cards.


HR&S delivers our value proposition to our targeted customers through different effective channels that are fast, efficient, and cost-effective.

Own channels (storefront)

  • RISE Centre Incubator.
  • On-line seminars & workshops.
  • On-site seminars & workshops.
  • Consultancy coaching.

Partner channels (major distributors)

  • Crowd-funding platforms.

Combination of both

  • Research management workshops at SSA institutions.


Customer Relationships
The type of relationship HR&S wants to create with our customer segments.

To get new customers

  • Social media reach out.
  • Articles in relevant journals.
  • Speaker platforms.
  • RISE Centre FB.

To keep customers purchasing or using our services

  • Website & Social media postings.
  • ActionEvents.

To grow revenue from current customers

  • Dedicated personal assistance

Various forms of customer relationships include:
Personal Assistance: Assistance in a form of employee-customer interaction. Such assistance is performed during sales and/or after-sales.
Dedicated Personal Assistance: The most intimate and hands-on personal assistance in which a sales representative is assigned to handle all the needs and questions of a special set of clients.
Self Service: The type of relationship that translates from the indirect interaction between the company and the clients. Here, an organization provides the tools needed for the customers to serve themselves easily and effectively.
Automated Services: A system similar to self-service but more personalized as it has the ability to identify individual customers and their preferences. An example of this would be making book suggestions based on the characteristics of previous book purchases.
Communities: Creating a community allows for direct interactions among different clients and the company. The community platform produces a scenario where knowledge can be shared and problems are solved between different clients.
Co-creation: A personal relationship is created through the customer’s direct input to the final outcome of the company’s products/services.

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Cost Structure
HR&S is value-driven. HR&S is breaking new grounds and proposes a change of paradigm. The new values are discussed internationally and HR&S, as one stekholder, is proposing pratical strategies. We are also value-driven as we seek to be aware of the most recent knowledge, use the most recent technology and implement new innovative and brave methods. We are expensive and delivers in relation. We also handle high level of risk and can fail from time to time, but we make a key activity to learn lessons and not repeat mistakes.

We work with variable costs and adapt to the customers capacity to pay. We also work with economies of scale and costs go down with the anmount of service ordered.

The cost structure describes the most important monetary consequences while operating under different business models. A company’s DOC. Classes of Business Structures:  Cost-Driven – This business model focuses on minimizing all costs and having no frills. e.g. Low-cost airlines. Value-Driven – Less concerned with cost, this business model focuses on creating value for products and services. e.g. Louis Vuitton, Rolex.
Characteristics of Cost Structures: Fixed Costs – Costs are unchanged across different applications. e.g. salary, rent. Variable Costs – Costs vary depending on the amount of production of goods or services. e.g. music festivals. Economies of Scale – Costs go down as the amount of goods are ordered or produced. Economies of Scope – Costs go down due to incorporating other businesses which have a direct relation to the original product.


Revenue Streams
HR&S targets several ways to makes income from each customer segment.

Asset Sale – (the most common type) Selling ownership rights to a physical good. e.g. retail corporations. Usage Fee – Money generated from the use of a particular service. e.g. UPS. Subscription Fees – Revenue generated by selling access to a continuous service. e.g. Netflix. Lending/Leasing/Renting – Giving exclusive right to an asset for a particular period of time. e.g. Leasing a Car. Licensing – Revenue generated from charging for the use of a protected intellectual property. Brokerage Fees – Revenue generated from an intermediate service between 2 parties. e.g. Broker selling a house for commission. Advertising – Revenue generated from charging fees for product advertising.