The Marine Megafauna Foundation (MMF) is an organization based in Mozambique, whose objective is to save ocean giants from extinction. They focus on the research and conservation of key threatened marine species. Their main focus is the ‘Marine Megafauna’, which are large marine species such as sharks, rays, marine mammals and turtles. These animals are key components of marine ecosystems but, as they are long-lived and have low reproductive rates, their populations are usually the first to be reduced by human pressures. 

MMF develops pioneering research to develop and implement long lasting conservation solutions that allow these species to rebuild their populations. MMF was developed to research, protect and conserve populations of threatened marine species along the eastern coast of Africa. They have since expanded globally and now in 2019, conduct research in six continents and now have a permanent presence in Indonesia.

In 2018 MMF launched MEGA expeditions, an opportunity for dive tourists to go on expeditions with MMF in Mozambique.  This was deemed the most effective way for MMF to generate organic revenue to cover overhead costs and ensure its sustainability, from research done by a Stanford researcher.

Matt Roach’s TIE placement with MMF helped launch MEGA Expeditions through a communications campaign. The Go Deeper campaign leveraged what differentiates MEGA Expeditions from competitors: MMF’s profound knowledge of the sea and prime location in Mozambique. Once the Go Deeper campaign was launched towards the end of 2018, the challenge then became how to reach its main audience and how to sell the diving spots — which was the focus of the following TIE project with MMF. You can read more about Matt’s campaign here.  

Following up on Matt’s project, Mika Singh, a strategist from the WPP network, went on TIE in early 2019 to work with MMF. Mika put in place a very useful CRM and created a sales pipeline for the diving expeditions that reached their target audience for this product: divers who have been to the world’s best diving spots and are looking for a tailored experience, assisted by MMF’s marine biologists. You can read more about Mika’s work with MMF on her TIE case study here

Mika’s sales pipeline combined with Matt’s Go Deeper campaign helped MMF sell out their August 2019 MEGA Expeditions. Each expedition has 8 spots and generates U$1,000 per spot in profit for MMF; therefore, in order to cover overhead costs for their Mozambique operation, currently at U$25,000 per year, they would need to sell out at least 3 expeditions per year. Nonetheless, MMF’s team in Tofo is still figuring out how many expeditions they would have the capacity to do per year without being a burden on the organisation, as hosting and managing expeditions’ guests takes up a lot of everyone’s time, fault of not yet having a dedicated system in place to manage this.

The concept of MEGA Expeditions is working, but needs to be further developed so that MMF obtains the biggest impact from it. This next TIE placement will help MMF in their efforts to turn MEGA Expeditions into a full-fledged operation by figuring out what are the next steps in order to scale it up in a sustainable way. To help MMF carry out this project, Octopus Renewables are sending Niall Quinn on TIE in March 2020. Click here to read more about him.