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IOT is a Malagasy company specialized in the breeding and export of sea cucumbers. Local fishermen are associated with its activities, allowing them to generate additional income. The company actively contributes to preserving marine wildlife & fighting against overfishing.

IOT breeds sea cucumbers, an endangered species. With a team of Malagasy scientists, the company has developed an exclusive growing technique. Sufficiently mature, larvae are sold at cheap price to neighboring fishermen who raise them to maturity, before re-selling them at good price to IOT to be dried, packed and exported.  Established in South of Madagascar, one of the poorest and most isolated regions of the country, IOT pursues a twofold objective: preserve marine wildlife and improve living conditions of local fishermen. In six years, the company created 185 jobs, 76 of them on a permanent basis.

Sea cucumbers have no adverse impact on their environment as they feed filtering the water and do not need any antibiotic. They are in fact very useful for renewing the oxygen levels of the ocean. Besides, this activity a replacement income for local fishermen and therefore tends to limit the risk of overfishing.

The partnership that IOT has established with rural villages currently — benefits 30 families and should soon reach 150 families. Each of 7 these families can generate an extra 40 euros per month through  this activity, which represents the average income in Madagascar. A farmer was for example able to buy 6 chairs, 3 goats and pay for the schooling of her daughter, a year after starting working for IOT.

IOT offers training to fishermen to help them manage the additional income. The company finances as well the presence of a military man to secure the villages, mobile phones for the mayors and four drinking water wells.

Employees are provided with free transportation and a canteen.They benefit from health care services for them and their families. 24 of them have completed training in aquaculture.


The project : SMALL IS POWERFUL / How small African companies are fostering the Development of the continent

Through a visual and analytical investigation, « Small is Powerful » provides an unusual vision of the African continent by exploring it through its Small and Medium Enterprises (SME). Above all, the project is attached to a human vision of these companies by looking at their stakeholders (clients, employees, local population, political and community figures) and by positively highlighting the impact of these SMEs on their respective ecosystems.  By producing five reportages on SMEs operating in different countries and sectors, the project aims to show how African SMEs are a catalyst for growth on the continent.

The project intends to : Fight against stereotypes on how African economy and society are currently perceived / Support and promote the reality of African entrepreneurship which is rich and dynamic, carrying prospects for the future / Produce visual and analytical content allowing an efficient case to be made for these entrepreneurs committed to this dynamic, and who are vital contributors supporting African growth