With the “Business skills transfer programme for ecotourism development”, IUCN and Kuoni are supporting conservation organisations to effectively manage ecotourism related businesses through business skills, knowledge and experience sharing and market-based approaches to conservation. This work revolves around capacity building workshops taking place in different destinations. The approach is to provide organisations in each destination with a deeper understanding of ecotourism businesses and market conditions. The organisations will gain experience in ecotourism business skills through direct exposure to tourism professionals who will deliver the training and support the most promising businesses in bilateral mentoring activities.

As the business partner, Kuoni is instrumental in bringing the right skills to the table. With their knowledge of the tourism sector and presence in key tourism destinations around the world they will be able to provide practical advice on the different areas of business development. Furthermore, the hands-on experience of Kuoni’s instructors allows those involved in this training programme to understand the constraints and catalysts to this multifaceted sector.

In each destination, the programme is implemented in three steps:

  • Step 1 - Understand the context (market and natural): Overview of the natural and market assets as well as the key players in each destination.
  • Step 2 - Build capacity and support bringing products to the best suitable market segments – knowledge sharing: Organizing and delivering the training session and in particular matching training needs expressed by the invitees and the instructors’ skills. Kuoni complements the workshop by mentoring and following up with the participants individually.
  • Step 3 - Ensure follow up: Based on steps 1 and 2, a plan for follow up activities will be developed for each destination depending on local stakeholder needs and with partners in the destination (e.g. business to business platform, capacity development for ecotourism society, network event for investors etc.).