EU4Business helps woman-led Azerbaijan company expand customer base by 25%


With funding from the European Union under the EU4Business Initiative, the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) helped a woman-led accessory and home-care products company in Azerbaijan introduce an effective recruitment and sales system. 

The EBRD helped ESSE LLC, a woman-managed company distributing a wide range of women accessories and home-care products, to introduce an effective recruitment and sales (RS) system for direct sales. As a result, the company increased its turnover by 18%, added new product lines and opened two regional offices.

Established in 2012, ESSE owns an office in the centre of Baku, including a sales zone, warehouse and back office.

In view of growing the business and attracting new clients while retaining the existing ones, the company’s management believed that there was a need to strengthen the customer service system and to increase the efficiency of the sales and marketing procedures. The company also needed to enhance the professional competencies and specialisation of the account managers.

The EBRD put ESSE LLC in touch with HL Group LLC, a woman-led Baku-based consultant offering services in market analysis and development planning.

The Consultant:

  • Reviewed sales staff performance
  • Identified measurable goals for KAM (Key Account Managers)
  • Developed a RS (Recruitment and Sales) system
  • Evaluated the internal software-based document-flow and reporting system and suggested improvements
  • Conducted training sessions for the sales team and partners
  • Provided recommendations on strengthening the direct distribution network.

As a result, the company increased its annual sales by 18% and the number of individual customers served per year by 25%. ESSE also added new product lines including cosmetics from the Baltic countries and jewellery products, optimised its pricing policy and opened two regional offices.

Ms. Gulnara Hasanova¸ Director of ESSE LLC, commented: “The project significantly helped the company to compete successfully during the economic slow-down and to build a strong direct distribution network. We started a second consultancy project in 2016 and expect that it will help our company to grow further.”

Total project value

€11 700

Client contribution

€6 435