Meeting traditional cultural dancers in Zambia is a unique experience for European tourists



As part of a three-year Market Framework Agreement for CBI, Acorn was commissioned to write a series of reports to support SME’s in developing countries export their tourism product onto the European market.

Our Approach

One of the main constraints for SMEs from developing countries seeking to export to Europe is a lack of good quality market information.  Tourism is identified as offering high potential for exports to Europe and generating foreign exchange.  Acorn undertook extensive primary and secondary research to provide detailed niche market studies to help build the expertise and market knowledge of MSME’s. The studies include:

  • Market Entry Studies to improve professionalism and understanding of European travel trade: 
    • Tips for Finding European Buyers 
    • Tips for Doing Business with European Buyers 
    • Requirements for European Buyers
    • Tips for Organising Exports to Europe
    • How to be a Successful Company Online
  • Market Entry Studies for Promising Niche Products: 
    • Adventure Tourism
    • Community-Based Tourism
    • Cruise Tourism
    • Nature and Ecotourism
    • Religious Tourism
    • Scientific, Academic, Educational and Volunteer Tourism (SAVE)
    • Sport Tourism
    • Sun and Beach Tourism
  • Market Entry Studies for Promising Niche Market Segments including 
    • Baby Boomers
    • Diaspora/VFR Tourists
    • Fully Independent Travellers (FIT) 
    • Generation Y/Millennials 
    • LGBTQ Tourists
    • Multi-Generational Tourists


Each report was constructed to provide insights and a series of practical tips for SMEs in developing countries on how to launch their products onto the European market and gain a competitive edge.  

Topics included:

  • Legal and non-legal mandatory and additional requirements such as the European Travel Package Directive, GDPR compliance, and liability insurance 
  • Additional requirements such as sustainable certification for tourism with comprehensive details of programmes currently on the market; minimising risk; setting prices.
  • Requirements for niche markets that covered topics such as establishing standards through a Code of Conduct; building a website; maximising online presence through social media; 
  • Identifying the key sales channels; analysing the competition; pricing.


Public Transport Directions

"Acorn Tourism has produced multiple tourism research project for CBI including tourism sector Value Chain Analysis and niche market studies for MSMEs in developing countries. They are a very solid research partner and always deliver to great satisfaction."

Arthur Scheinhardt, Programme Manager Market Intelligence, CBI, Netherlands Enterprise Agency

Projects Nearby

  1. Extensive research, stakeholder engagement and workshops, informed CBI about the…

  2. Detailed analysis of the community-based tourism market in Africa, in particular looking…

  3. Acorn’s team provided Zambia’s Ministry of Tourism with technical support to review,…

  1. Acorn delivered a Destination Management Plan for Livingstone, based on a placemaking…

  2. A detailed report about the FIT (Fully Independent Traveller) market segment was required…

  3. Specialist niche market report that looks at the major Safari destinations in Africa,…

  4. The United Nations World Tourism Organization (UNWTO) commissioned five three-day tourism…

  5. This study was the fourth Tourism Satellite Account (TSA) compilation for Botswana, with…

  6. Development of a tourism satellite account for Tanzania. The account was based on…

  7. Strategic plan for the development of tourism in Zanzibar that would assist it to…

  8. Study to develop a system of tourism statistics for Rwanda, including the implementation…

  9. Development of a tourism statistics database for the collection, compilation and…

  10. A comprehensive study about Sun and Beach Tourism in developing countries was required to…

  11. Marketing and branding strategy commissioned by the Zanzibar Association of Tourism…

  12. Market research study to assist Tanzania with its growth strategy which aimed to double…

  13. Rwanda has a wide variety of well-marked hiking and cycling trails, especially in the…

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Niche Market Intelligence Business Advice to support SME’s in Developing Countries


CBI, Netherlands Enterprise Agency,


CBI, Netherlands Enterprise Agency

This project contributes to the following United Nations Sustainable Development Goals:

  • Acorn AwardsSDG 1 - End poverty in all its forms everywhere SDG 1 - End poverty in all its forms everywhere 2020
  • Acorn AwardsSDG 5 - Achieve gender equality and empower all women and girls SDG 5 - Achieve gender equality and empower all women and girls 2020
  • Acorn AwardsSDG 8 - Promote sustained, inclusive and sustainable economic growth, employment and work SDG 8 - Promote sustained, inclusive and sustainable economic growth, employment and work 2020
  • Acorn AwardsSDG10 - Reduce inequality within and among countries SDG10 - Reduce inequality within and among countries 2020

Contact us

3 Woodland Enterprise Centre, Hastings Road,
Flimwell, East Sussex, TN5 7PR, UK

+44 (0) 1580 879970