There is nothing instant in the journey of a sustainable business

“Regions closer to natural resources should have more advantages in managing what they have and benefiting from the results.”

However, reality states otherwise. Regions around natural resources often fail to fully utilize the abundant natural potential as they should. The lack of capability in natural resource management and insufficient business experience has resulted in them generating only minimal output. Consequently, they are unable to add value to the products they produce.

Why does this happen?

Businesses tend to be centralized in major cities, while regions outside these urban centers are often overlooked. This could be due to various factors, including limited infrastructure, lack of access to broader markets, and a shortage of trained human resources in rural areas. As a result, the economic potential inherent in natural resources is sometimes wasted.

To address this issue, efforts need to be made to develop skills and business opportunities in regions outside major cities. This way, communities can be more effective in managing existing natural resources, adding value to products, and overall supporting sustainable economic growth beyond major cities.

Demo Day Konstelasi Accelerator

Building a sustainable business foundation: Value Chain Collaboration

With the spirit of decentralizing businesses from major cities, Konstelasi Accelerator embarked on its journey in 2020. In the past two years, Konstelasi Accelerator has conducted three batches, consisting of 13 sustainable businesses from various regions in Indonesia. These sustainable businesses have their respective focuses. In Batch 1, there are Sinergi Natural, YAGI Forest, Sintang Freshwater Care (SFC), MP Natural, and Agrapanabio.

This collaboration can be mapped through the value chain of commodity activities. In the snakehead fish commodity, Sintang Freshwater Care (SFC), as a downstream player, is responsible for supplying raw materials of freshwater fish (snakehead fish and giant snakehead) to the middle player, Agrapanabio. Agrapanabio conducts research to produce value-added derivative products, such as Albumin. Albumin serves as a raw material for pharmaceutical and health products.

In the candlenut commodity, there are MP Natural and Sinergi Natural as middle players involved in processing candlenuts into raw materials for beauty products. The resulting derivative products can then be utilized by YAGI Forest as the main ingredient in its beauty products.

Batch 2 cohorts further enhance the completeness of the value chain collaboration map owned by Konstelasi Accelerator. Alam Siak Lestari (ASL) plays a role as both a middle and downstream player in processing snakehead fish into Albumin, which is then marketed as a health product. Automa is present at every stage of the value chain, focusing on monitoring carbon emissions from business activities. Lastly, Arcia Oil focuses on the beauty industry with processed products from candlenuts.

Batch 3 introduces five new sustainable businesses: Pesona Kalbar Hijau (PKH), Goodvibes, Peek.Me, Conservana Spices, and Kulaku. PKH holds a middle-downstream position in the value chain collaboration map. Meanwhile, Goodvibes and Peek.Me are positioned downstream with a focus on natural health products. Conservana Spices, positioned in the middle-downstream, focuses on non-timber forest products processed into essential oils. Lastly, Kulaku, located in the middle-downstream, processes various derivative products from coconuts.

The journey of Konstelasi Accelerator with Batch 1 cohorts.

Together with Lingkar Temu Kabupaten Lestari (LTKL), Konstelasi Accelerator – Supernova Ecosystem began its journey by implementing a marketing mix in 2020 to commercialize sustainable businesses in sub-national regions of Indonesia. This activity is the foundation of the ongoing accelerator program. The approach used in this activity is the Jurisdictional Approach (JA), aiming not only to develop sustainable businesses but also to contribute to the conservation of forest and peatland areas while providing incentives to local communities.

In this program, mentoring is provided to cohorts based on the needs and challenges faced by each business. Various classes cover aspects such as the theory of change, product market analysis, organizational management, financial reporting, network development, and public speaking training to introduce businesses to investors. To further deepen the lessons learned, individual mentors also assist in aligning business strategies with sustainability values, addressing operational issues, and formulating concrete steps toward sustainable growth.

Beyond the program approach, Konstelasi Accelerator also organizes business matching and demo days. Business matching provides an opportunity for sustainable businesses to form partnerships and collaborations with others that align with their values and vision. Unlike business matching, demo day is a moment where businesses can present their innovations and potential to investors and potential partners. Through these activities, cohorts can build connections and gain exposure in the sustainable business realm.

Through the combination of classes and these activities, Konstelasi Accelerator aims to provide opportunities for cohorts to build more connections and gain the exposure necessary in the world of sustainable business.

Graduation of YAGI and Sinergi Natural

The end of our journey’s beginning

As October 2023 comes to a close, marking the completion of Batch 1 of Konstelasi Accelerator, Konstelasi Accelerator and cohorts have experienced numerous moments together. Various mentors with diverse backgrounds and focuses have been companions on the cohorts’ journey.

However, out of the five cohorts from Batch 1, only YAGI Forest and Sinergi Natural have completed the entire program. Agrapanabio did not finish the program but has transitioned to become a partner with Supernova to incubate businesses in the Sintang and Siak regions. Meanwhile, MP Natural pivoted from its previous business to focus on providing support to farmers in the region. SFC, on the other hand, redirected its focus to advocate for lake conservation and the preservation of the surrounding lake areas with the local community in Sintang, forming a foundation. Though they are no longer cohorts, the three of them still maintain a close relationship with Supernova, sharing the same dream: supporting the conservation of forests and peatlands and promoting the creation of a more sustainable business ecosystem, each in their own way.

Graduating from the Konstelasi Accelerator program marks the end and the beginning of a story. The story of how to commercialize sustainable businesses is a joint commitment towards sustainability. From the end of this journey, we learn that sustainability is not instant and truly involves determination and relentless hard work.

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