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  • Inflection Point: Unlocking Growth in the era of farmer finance

    The Initiative for Smallholder Finance and the Rural and Agricultural Finance Learning Lab released a new study titled “Inflection Point: Unlocking growth in the era of farmer finance.” The study suggests that while current efforts to expand access to finance are not sufficient to meet smallholder demand, concerted efforts around customer centricity, progressive partnerships, and smart subsidy have the potential to change the sector’s growth trajectory to best serve the world’s smallholders.

    Go to the download page for this report

  • Intervention Guide for the Women's Empowerment in Agriculture Index

    The Intervention Guide for the Women’s Empowerment in Agriculture Index (WEAI) provides guidance to donors and implementers of agricultural market development programs on how to translate into practice the evidence and insights gained from the WEAI survey results. The WEAI was developed by the United States Agency for International Development’s (USAID) Feed the Future Initiative, the International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI) and the Oxford Poverty and Human Development Initiative as a direct measure of economic empowerment and gender parity at the individual and household levels. The guide assists practitioners in selecting and designing evidence-based interventions that are the most relevant to the domains of empowerment prioritized in the WEAI, using a market systems and gender-responsive approach.

    Download the brief

  • Unlocking Local Currency Lending: Foreign Exchange Risk in Agricultural Finance

    Unlocking Local Currency Lending

    Though not often discussed in global conversations on the smallholder farmer financing gap, the challenge of managing foreign exchange (FX) risk is a critical issue facing finance managers who provide financial services to farmers. FX risk affects the availability and affordability of credit for smallholder farmers because lenders with foreign currency funding limit their local currency exposure by restricting the types of financial products they offer and the volume of capital they make available

    This briefing explains that donors can play an influential role in mitigating FX risk by:

    1. Overcoming limited institutional expertise in FX management 
    2. Supporting individual agricultural lenders on a bi-lateral basis 
    3. Developing currency-focused risk guarantees 
    4. Creating local currency notes and adapt other proven currency solutions

    This briefing outlines the particular challenges of FX management in agriculture and profiles the landscape of existing solutions, including recommendations for how lenders, donors, and other partners can develop interventions that will help mitigate these FX risks in the short to medium term.

    Download the brief

  • Innovations in Impact Measurement

    Innovations in Impact Measurement Report

    Impact investing is booming. The sector is attracting greater attention and more capital than ever, with an estimated USD 60 billion under management in 2015.1 Yet as impact investing grows, quality data collection on social performance remains the exception rather than the norm. While nearly all impact investors — 95%2 — say that they measure and report on impact, current practice is, on the whole, limited to output measures of scale: number of people reached, number of jobs created.

    While this is disappointing, it is also understandable. The prevailing wisdom within the sector is that collecting data about social performance is burdensome and expensive, and some impact investors and social entrepreneurs would assert that it is a distraction from the ‘core’ work of building a financially sustainable social enterprise...


  • Investor and Funder Guide to the Agricultural Social Lending Sector

     Investor and Funder Guide to the Agricultural Social Lending Sector

    The Investor and Funder Guide to the Agricultural Social Lending Sector draws on a groundbreaking aggregate analysis of leading social lenders’ lending portfolios and metrics to 1) examine current lending practices among social lenders, 2) consider the future trajectory of the sector, and 3) highlight opportunities for investors and funders to support the sector’s future growth.

    Social lenders invest in small and growing agricultural businesses in low- and middle-income countries and have enormous potential to help close the significant gap between supply of and demand for smallholder finance -- this briefing note is a practical guide for investors and funders seeking to support the social lending sector.


  • Global Economic Empowerment: Private Sector Solutions at Each Stage of Development

    Global Economic Empowerment: Private Sector Solutions at Each Stage of Development

    In Global Economic Empowerment: Private Sector Solutions at Each Stage of Development the U.S. Chamber of Commerce Foundation Corporate Citizenship Center explores how businesses are creating a better world through empowerment. The report includes a case study on Root Capital's efforts to mobilize private sector investments for greater supply chain stability (page 12). 

  • The State of Measurement Practice in the SGB Sector
    Dalberg Report - Catalyzing Smallholder  Agricultural Finance

    This report, The State of Measurement Practice in the SGB Sector, dives into the specific impact measurement practices that members of the Aspen Network of Development Entrepreneurs (ANDE) have adopted, from the types of indicators they collect to the way they manage impact data, and what percentage of resources they allocate to measurement. 

    For further information on our collective vision for shared metrics, check out this SSIR blog post co-authored by Root Capital, ANDE and Dalberg Global Development Advisors: Metrics 3.0: A New Vision for Shared Metrics.


  • Catalyzing Smallholder Agricultural Finance
    Dalberg Report - Catalyzing Smallholder  Agricultural Finance

    Smallholder farmers occupy an increasingly important segment of the global agricultural value chain. The Catalyzing Smallholder Agricultural Finance report, published by Dalberg and supported by the Citi Foundation and Skoll Foundation, suggests that with creased financing, farmers can improve their yields and products and in some cases double their income. The report also identifies five primary growth pathways for deploying investment to address smallholder finance demand.  

    Download the full report from Dalberg's website


  • Working Paper on Intermediaries that Support SGBs in the Developing World

    2013 Rainforest Alliance Farmer Bankability Study

    Monitor Deloitte and the Aspen Network of Development Entrepreneurs (ANDE) teamed up for the working paper Growth and Opportunity: The Landscape of Organizations that Support Small and Growing Businesses in the Developing World. Commissioned by the Aspen Network of Development Entrepreneurs (ANDE) as part of its own strategic planning process, this study maps the landscape of the SGB sector, and in so doing, determines both the challenges facing SGB intermediaries and how ANDE and other organizations should support the field in addressing these challenges. 

    Download the publication from The Aspen Institute’s website


  • 2013 Study on Farmer Bankability from Rainforest Alliance

    2013 Rainforest Alliance Farmer Bankability Study

    The Citi Foundation and the Rainforest Alliance undertook Farmer Bankability and Sustainable Finance: Farm-level Metrics that Matter, a study designed to better understand farmer capacity and performance with regard to financial administration, as well as any bankability benefits associated with Rainforest Alliance certification.

    Importantly, this study focused on farmers and their individual bankability. The Rainforest Alliance worked with a Peru-based team of researchers to survey a total of 110 coffee and cacao producers from 22 producer organizations in Colombia and Peru; 63 of the producers were Rainforest Alliance certified.

    Download the study from Rainforest Alliance's website