Delivering on Regional Agricultural Trade: Considerations for Investors

This webinar was held on 24 February 2021. The subject was Delivering on Regional Agricultural Trade: Considerations for Investors on Inclusive Supply Chains.

Summary: The webinar explored the different dimensions agri-finance providers need to take account of to promote inclusivity in regional trade. The webinar was based on a CASA briefing developed by the panellist’s organisations.

Download the briefing that inspired this webinar.

The panel: Debisi Araba, managing director AGRF & Malabo Montpellier Panel member, Jonathan Barnow vice-president at TechnoServe & CASA Technical Assistance Facility strategic advisor and Lorenzo Cotula principal researcher in law and sustainable development at IIED and project director of the Empowering Producers in Commercial Agriculture (EPIC) programme.

The audience for this webinar includes impact investors; development finance institutions; commercial lenders; agri-business companies and experts; Investment promotion agencies; donors; NGOs and Think Tanks.


00:00 – 03:31Welcome by Alice Chapple CASAIntroduction to CASA and the Agribusiness Breakthrough Webinar Series
03:32 –
Debisi Araba Malabo Montpellier Panel Opportunities for the investor community to influence and capitalise on emergent intraregional trade policies
18:50 –
Jonathan Barnow CASA TAFThe use of technical assistance for increasing sustainable smallholder farmer inclusion in value chains
31:07 –
Lorenzo Cotula EPICThe role of contractual relationships throughout the value chain for balancing risk and reward whilst ensuring inclusiveness and fairness
Alice Chapple CASAQuestions from the audience:
How can the way value is added in the supply chain support positive outcomes such as jobs?
To what extent is low intraAfrican trade driven by an imbalance in food products produced and demanded on the continent?
Our minister (FCDO) want to see our ag programmes and investments transform entire economies and help nurture the national investor eco-system.What would best catalyse this goal?
Wrap-up of key takeaways

Debisi Araba (Panellist) is currently the managing director at the AGRF, the premier catalytic, multi-partner platform for food and agriculture transformation in Africa, and member Malabo Montpellier Panel.

Previously, Dr Araba was the Africa region director at the International Center for Tropical Agriculture, a member of the CGIAR, where he led strategy and business development in Africa. He has also served as the technical adviser on environmental policy to the minister of agriculture and rural development in Nigeria, where he recently co-authored Nigeria’s National Agricultural Resilience Framework and led global and national partnerships in the development of climate-smart strategies for the agricultural sector.

He has a doctorate degree from the Centre for Environmental Policy, Imperial College London, a masters in public administration from the Harvard Kennedy School of Government, a masters in clean technology from the University of Newcastle Upon Tyne and a bachelors degree in physical geography from the University of Ibadan.

Jonathan Barnow (Panellist) is a vice president at TechnoServe and runs the strategic initiatives team, which works with multinational corporations to build the business case and operating models for incorporating smallholders into commercial supply chains. Since joining TechnoServe in 2012, he has overseen more than 70 projects on local sourcing and sustainability investments in emerging markets with companies that include The Coca-Cola Company, Walmart, Syngenta, Kellogg’s, Nespresso, JDE, Cargill, AB InBev, Anglo American, Danone, and Visa. His primary area of expertise is the design and implementation of inclusive business models that drive both impact and commercial value.

Beyond his work with corporations, Jonny is a strategic advisor to the CASA program, where his work focuses on scaling inclusive business models through the provision of technical assistance alongside impact investment.

Before joining TechnoServe, Jonny was a strategy consultant with L.E.K. Consulting for seven years, first in London, before helping open their New York office. He has a BA in modern history from the University of Oxford.

Lorenzo Cotula (Panellist) is a principal researcher in law and sustainable development at the International Institute for Environment and Development (IIED), where he leads action-research and policy work on land governance, commercial agriculture and natural resource investments. Lorenzo has 20 years of experience working with civil society, governments, the private sector, donors and multilaterals, and extensive country experience in Africa and Asia. He steers IIED’s work on legal tools for citizen empowerment – a collaborative initiative to strengthen local rights in the policy arenas where natural resource governance meets the global economy. Lorenzo is the project director of the Empowering Producers in Commercial Agriculture (EPIC) project, and has co-authored EPIC research on producer agency in agricultural value chains and on contracts for commercial agriculture.

Alice Chapelle

Alice Chapple (Moderator) is an economist and a specialist in impact investment and impact assessment. She is CASA’s investment adviser and she established Impact Value in October 2012. Alice previously worked as director of sustainable financial markets at Forum for the Future. She also worked as as financial analyst, fund manager and social and environmental advisor for the CDC Group. Alice’s current roles include chair of Investor Watch, independent chair of the CDC Plus (technical assistance) committee, trustee of the Shell Foundation, and member of the advisory boards of Sainsbury’s Foundation, Frontier Finance Solutions and Connected Asset Management.

About the series

This series of webinars features analysis of evidence by the CASA programme and partners, designed to support the commercialisation of agriculture in emerging markets across the developing world. The series will showcase solutions to the most common challenges in agri-business for inclusive growth and support investment facilitation in agriculture in emerging markets.

Each webinar lasts 60 minutes and take place on the last Wednesday of the month. The webinars will typically feature a combination of researchers and agri-business experts. Crucially, discussion will focus on actionable take-aways (‘breakthroughs’).

After the event participants receive a one-pager (briefing note) which summarises all of the key discussion points. Within a few days of each event a video will be available in the events section of the CASA programme website. Any documents referenced in the webinars will be found in the evidence section of the CASA website or on the one-pager.

Comments are closed.