Final Documentation

The DESIDE Program Experience and Results, SDC/Swisscontact Peru, M. Reichmuth, 2004

    The aim of the ten-year DESIDE program (1994-2004) was to contribute to economic growth and help SEs consolidate and become more competitive by rendering BDS markets more dynamic. The program promoted market development for SEs by simultaneously facilitating processes, actors, and instruments at the meso and macro levels. Its primary target groups were BDS providers and SED support institutions at the meso and macro levels. The rationale was that a favourable policy and regulatory framework and a growing number of viable BDS providers would generate SED by selling services which SE clients would want and pay for.

    DESIDE interventions included:
    - A market approach in both the business environment and in SED promotion;
    - A demand-orientation through providers who understand BDS demand;
    - Facilitation of processes and cooperation between participants by working through alliances set up for specific purposes;
    - Technical assistance to support the capacity development of people and institutions; and
    - Information sharing to influence processes and increase knowledge in all the areas of project implementation.

    The report details the range of creative methodologies DESIDE utilized in its efforts to develop Peru's micro and small enterprise sector - from fostering BDS market transparency and supporting development of a BDS market-information system to developing a gender-sensitive training methodology and working with FUNDES to apply its Multimedia training packages through franchises.

    Summary of results
    A few of the lessons learned are:
    - The multiple facilitations of DESIDE at the meso and macro level created learning processes while the breadth of its interventions at various levels with different actors was useful in promoting an SED market approach;
    - DESIDE's willingness to support opportunities and initiatives of other qualified actors and to stop working with partners who did not respond, and its introduction of bidding processes for BDS provider selection defined its role as a facilitator emphasizing alliances and effects that transcended specific target groups and fostered several processes;
    - DESIDE looked for BDCs with the best business-development prospects having learned that NGOs proposing to operate as an EDC usually failed due to different management needs and mentalities (support vs market); and
    - Efforts at the policy-making level resulted in ample discussion of SE issues, but the impact of national SED promotion laws are hardly felt by microenterprises due to a lack of instruments. However, the state created several interesting instruments, e.g., export insurance and credit for SMEs.