Consultancy: Hand Hygiene Market Analysis in Lesotho and Eswatini

United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF)

Lesotho 🇱🇸

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Background and Justification

Making basic hygiene services accessible to all people in Lesotho is a top priority  for the government and development partners. In addition to hygiene being an effective measure in reducing faecal-oral disease transmissions, the current COVID-19 pandemic has further highlighted the critical role hand hygiene plays in disease prevention and control. There is need to take immediate action on hand hygiene across all public and private settings to respond and control the COVID-19 pandemic. Even more importantly, there is a need to build on the current momentum to make hand hygiene a mainstay in public health interventions beyond the pandemic and create a culture of hand hygiene at all levels of society.

Most people in Lesotho and Eswatini, like many across Eastern and Southern Africa region invest in their own hygiene goods and services through the market, engaging with different private sector actors that are regulated by the government. Where these markets do not exist, people are limited by the lack of available choices and by high prices. To unlock the potential of the market for hand hygiene, UNICEF Lesotho and Eswatini Country Offices are investing in strengthening market systems that deliver affordable products and services to those who currently lack basic hand hygiene services.

Building sustainable markets requires partnering with governments, private enterprises and entrepreneurs, development agencies, civil society and communities. To do this, the country offices aim to supports the development of inclusive local hand hygiene markets that extend choices for affordable and high-quality products and services to the poor, while providing economic opportunities for people as producers, services providers and wage earners. Investment in hygiene is essential to managing the current challenges presented in this time of Covid-19 and is expected to be essential in the long-term management of future pandemics. As experience demonstrates, however, these quick gains can be short-lived if the enabling environment for markets and private sector involvement are not nurtured. The need to focus on supply is especially critical in communities where there are high proportions of acute respiratory diseases like Covid-19, cholera and stunting (i.e. where demand exists but the availability of affordable and aspirational hand hygiene solutions is limited).

A better understanding of the product and market landscape will inform how UNICEF influences the market and engages businesses to improve the supply situation and ensure a sustainable and local market for communities in the long term. A detailed analysis of the market is essential to quantify demand and product preferences, to map and segment available products and services, identify gaps and needs, and identify existing and potential suppliers and assess competitive dynamics. It is important to assess not only the current market for hand hygiene-related products and services but also the size of the untapped potential market. Market segmentation is required to consider different levels of hand hygiene service and corresponding technologies. Companies and competitors should be assessed to identify/evaluate market share, pricing strategies, and overarching business strategies in order to identify the dominant forces and potential trendsetters.

For more sophisticated hand hygiene products, an analysis of other barriers such as intellectual property, manufacturing inputs, processes and a rudimentary cost of goods analysis should be performed to identify drivers of cost and pricing. These analyses can also illustrate the extent to which influence on suppliers themselves, versus advocacy with governments and support to the enabling environment, may be warranted to overcome constraints and to identify potential supplier financing needs. Market constraints should be assessed using the dimensions like affordability, availability, product appropriateness, quality, market competition, delivery channels, and funding security to facilitate demand. As part of that assessment, barriers to private sector engagement should also be assessed.

 Scope of Work


The objective of this assignment is to create a better understanding of the hand hygiene markets in Lesotho and Eswatini, through market analysis so as to support acceleration of access to hand hygiene in the two countries. Hence, UNICEF is seeking the services of a consultant who is knowledgeable in complex market assessments, particularly on hygiene markets in Lesotho and Eswatini. Note that the two countries rely to a larger extent on supplies from South Africa, so this should be taken into consideration as part of the analysis.

 Activities and Tasks

In the assessment, the following aspects should be considered:

  • Demand and customer preferences
    • Buyer vs Consumer, assessment of potential market demand including definition of what constitutes affordable pricing with respect to reported willingness to pay, consumer product preferences (i.e. preferences for specific product, product characteristics), willingness to pay and household budgetary allocations.
    • Understanding end user demand: in as much as basic needs and customer desires remain relatively uniform, a customer can only demand what they are familiar with. Customers may not be exposed to certain products and technologies and therefore do not demand them.
  • Supply landscape and product assessment
    • Classification of product groups and availability
    • Suppliers/manufacturers/developers and service providers, geographical distribution, market shares, patterns, trends and trend setters
    • Other entities involved (directly or indirectly) in the supply chain
    • Pricing and business strategies
    • Supplier/manufacturer/developer innovation potential (including any information on product pipelines)
    • For highest cost/price hand hygiene commodities: assess manufacturing inputs, processes and cost of goods  to understand drivers of cost / price, and the potential financing needs of suppliers (e.g. for working and investment capital)
  • Market and market segments:
    • Market size/value (by product/service segment), market growth trends, geographic distribution of the hand hygiene market and specific products
    • Distribution channel including supply chain consideration such as but not limited to mapping national distribution, transport/ import, distribution at wholesale and retail available,
    • Competition and competitive dynamics: identification of healthy competition/ market, barrier/challenges to entry (including intellectual property), barriers to private sector engagement, policy barriers for private sector operation
  • Enabling Environment
    • How can the public sector foster and regulate the private sector in a way that it can maximize its role in reaching the poorest with high quality products and services? Any relevant policy framework within the sector in favor of reaching the poorest with WASH services especially hand hygiene product marketing?)
    • Regulations and standards for hand hygiene products, and the extent to which these exist, or are needed (e.g. to address quality), and whether such (potential) regulations facilitate or constrain competition
    • Other policy frameworks including taxes, tariffs and labeling etc.
    • Hand hygiene marketing, promotion and campaigns: existing public sector or development partner initiatives promoting products and communication for behaviour change
    • Private sector marketing of relevant products and services (small business loans)
    • Potential sources of financing and financing structures for suppliers
    • Potential sources of financing for community self-help/households/consumers (micro-financing, micro-loans)
    • Local leaders / group of influencers  is there a leadership structure or group of influencers at sub-national level whom the private sector should interact with before doing business
  • Analysis and recommendations: Detailed analysis and recommendations to include, but not be limited to:
    • Detailed SWOT (strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats) analysis including identifying if and where market gaps are existing
    • Untapped potential market: unmet needs and potential demand
    • Using the two countries as gateways for market in other countries in the SADC region, factors for consideration.
    • Existing policy windows not yet explored
    • Possible incentives, such as small business loans, micro-loans, microfinance market and landscape
    • Partnership opportunities and possible modalities of partnerships with first movers/ innovators to address the Hand Hygiene for All Initiative
    • Partnerships in the WASH sector that could help hand hygiene marketing

 Work relationships

The consultant will work under the supervision of the WASH technical leads in UNICEF Lesotho and UNICEF Eswatini. They will also work with staff members of relevant ministries. The assignment is over 4 months, and most of it could be done remotely.

Desired profile

  • Advanced university degree in Business, or a field relevant to international WASH related development assistance.
  • Minimum 8 years relevant experience in market assessment and familiar with markets for WASH service delivery and/or hand hygiene supply landscape in low income countries.
  • Previous experience in conducting market analysis and assessments
  • Strong analytical, writing and communication skills
  • High standard of written and verbal English language skills
  • Familiarity with the local social and cultural context is highly desirable
  • Ability to conduct online consultations (if COVID-19 restrictions may not allow face-to-face meetings).

Administrative issues

 The candidate selected will be governed by and subject to UNICEF General Terms and Conditions for individual contracts.

  • The consultant will work on their own computer(s) and materials in the execution of this assignment.
  • The work of the consultant can be done virtually if necessary, except for one week in each country
  • The consultant payment is all inclusive
  • As per UNICEF DFAM policy, payment is made against approved deliverables. No advance payment is allowed unless in exceptional circumstances against bank guarantee, subject to a maximum of 30 per cent of the total contract value in cases where advance purchases, for example for supplies or travel, may be necessary.
  • Please also see UNICEF Standard Terms and Conditions attach
  • Consultants are not entitled to payment of overtime. All remuneration must be within the contract agreement.
  • Consultants are required to certify that they are covered by medical/health insurance. Consultants who are required to travel beyond commuting distance to duty station(s) shall also certify that their medical/health insurance covers medical evacuations.  


UNICEF Lesotho 2019-2022 Country Programme Document (CPD) was developed with a risk-informed programming lens to support sustainable programmes, considering assumptions for the project success.  The development of the CPD, through which this activity will contribute to, analyzed the vulnerabilities, systems, capacities, resources, and looked at the risks beneficiaries may face to prevent the risk or mitigate the impact. The risks associated with the implementation of this activity are minimal and below the global threshold set by UNICEF Eastern and Southern Africa Regional Office. The risks will be managed through constant monitoring, providing early warning of potential issues in programme implementation, and advocacy with GOL officials. All reasonable and likely risks should be identified and a relevant risk response and possible mitigating action defined.

How to Apply

Qualified candidates are requested to complete an application including profile to the respective advertisement on Please indicate your abilityavailability and financial proposal/quote to complete the terms of reference above.

Rates must be submitted in USD and include all expenses related to the assignment (e.g. consultancy fee, travels, living allowance). Applications without financial proposal will not be considered.


Only shortlisted candidates will be contacted and advance to the next stage of the selection process. If you have not been contacted within 2 months of the closing date please accept that your application was unsuccessful. Regret emails will be sent only to shortlisted/contacted candidates.

UNICEF is committed to diversity and inclusion within its workforce, and encourages all candidates, irrespective of gender, nationality, religious and ethnic backgrounds, including persons living with disabilities, to apply to become a part of the organization.

UNICEF has a zero-tolerance policy on conduct that is incompatible with the aims and objectives of the United Nations and UNICEF, including sexual exploitation and abuse, sexual harassment, abuse of authority and discrimination. UNICEF also adheres to strict child safeguarding principles. All selected candidates will be expected to adhere to these standards and principles and will therefore undergo rigorous reference and background checks. Background checks will include the verification of academic credential(s) and employment history. Selected candidates may be required to provide additional information to conduct a background check.

Individuals engaged under a consultancy or individual contract will not be considered “staff members” under the Staff Regulations and Rules of the United Nations and UNICEF’s policies and procedures, and will not be entitled to benefits provided therein (such as leave entitlements and medical insurance coverage). Their conditions of service will be governed by their contract and the General Conditions of Contracts for the Services of Consultants and Individual Contractors. Consultants and individual contractors are responsible for determining their tax liabilities and for the payment of any taxes and/or duties, in accordance with local or other applicable laws.