2020 Investor Summit: ICTs for improving investment readiness of small and medium agribusinesses
Digitization and the use of technology is critical in transforming agribusinesses into high performing and efficient enterprises. With increasing available platforms and tools, agribusinesses must engage and exploit the full benefit of digital efficiency.
This session explored the factors behind successful deployment of mobile technologies to improve agribusiness productivity and investment readiness while having a positive developmental impact at the smallholder farmer level. The discussion was framed around research conducted by CASA, which analysed over 100 mobile-based value-added services, targeted at agribusinesses, across Sub-Saharan Africa and Asia. We brought together a diverse panel representing some of the most successful service providers in the field, facilitating the identification of investment opportunities both at the agribusiness and service provider levels.
The Commercial Agriculture for Smallholders and Agribusiness (CASA) programme supports the commercial and development case for investing in agribusinesses that source produce from smallholders in the global South.
This summit was designed to provide opportunities to reflect on issues affecting the viability and growth of agri-businesses. The inaugural summit focused on three research reports commissioned by the CASA programme. In addition to the researchers, the three sessions also featured agribusinesses on the virtual panels reflecting on their learning and that of their peers. The platform for the Summit supported the AGRF Deal Room and facilitated active networking amongst participants.
|09.30||Welcome by Alice Chapple
|Introduction to CASA and CASA’s Investor Summit at AGRF’s Deal Room|
|09.33||Keynote by Richard Teuten, OBE, FCDO
|09.38||Alvaro Valverde, CASA
|Presentation of research, main findings and recommendations|
|09.48||Alice Chapple||Questions for the panellists to guide their interventions (see below)|
|09.50||David Davies, AgUnity
|09.57||Jan Willem van Casteren, eProd
|10.04||Prof. Muhammadou Kah, Malabo Montpelier Panel
|10.11||Alice Chapple||Questions from the audience and wrap-up of key takeaways|
Richard Teuten OBE, FCDO
Richard is head of the Growth and Resilience Department at the Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office. He is responsible for policy on economic development, urbanisation, agriculture, infrastructure and manufacturing in DFID and provision of cross-country technical assistance projects in these areas.
He has also been the head of the International Financial Institutions Department, as well as head of the UK Government’s Stabilisation Unit. In December 2019 he was awarded an Order of the British Empire after a 35 year career at DFID.
Alvaro is an international development adviser with experience designing and implementing projects, policy, strategy and research in over 20 countries across Africa, Asia and Latin America.
He is currently working for CABI as private sector engagement manager and as relationship manager for DFID’s funded Commercial Agriculture for Smallholders and Agribusiness (CASA) Programme. His work involves: developing and managing CABI’s Private Sector Engagement and Public Private Partnerships (PPP) strategy and portfolio; as well as leading CASA’s stakeholder engagement and global strategy to substantially increase the amount of investment available for agribusinesses and smallholder farmers across Africa and Asia.
David is the founder of AgUnity, FAC Global Agripreneur of the Year 2018, working on UN SDG’s, elimination of Poverty and increasing smallholder farmer incomes.
AgUnity is a philanthropic venture applying blockchain and smartphone technology to improve the lives of small farmer cooperatives in developing countries. Widely recognized by major NGO’s and winner of many AgTech and Philanthropy awards and accolades.
Previously, he had over a decade in senior roles at global investment banks (Goldman Sachs, Lehman, Nomura & SCB). In between banking, he was the founder CEO of successful startups in FinTech SaaS and mobile technology (back in 2001 when mobile was very new).
Jan Willem Van Casteren
Jan Willem is a non-executive director or eProd Solutions Ltd, which offers an ERP (Enterprise Resource Planning) tool for supplier management for SMEs active (e.g. traders and food processors) and member-based organizations (e.g. cooperatives) that aim at building a sustainable sourcing relationship with large numbers of suppliers in agriculture, livestock or fisheries.
He has over 20 years of international work experience covering policy research, private sector development, inclusive business in agriculture and food security, renewable energy and public private partnerships, with an extensive record of securing funds from private sector and bi- and multilateral donors. Since he has worked for international development organizations as well as in the private sector, he knows how to successfully bridge and connect these worlds, especially in Kenya and other East African countries.
Professor Muhammadou M.O. Kah
Professor Kah was recently named as vice president of academic affairs/provost & professor of information technology & computing at the American University of Nigeria. Previously, he was vice rector (vice president) for technology & innovations, founding dean and professor of IT and communications for the School of IT & Engineering at ADA University in Baku, Azerbaijan. He was also former rector (vice chancellor) of the University of The Gambia serving for six years. He was the third Rector (vice Chancellor) and the first Gambian to provide leadership for the University of The Gambia.
In 2016, the University of The Gambia awarded him a Doctor of Science (Honoris Causa) and in 2015, he was honored with an appointment as a fellow of the Cambridge Judge Business School, in the UK. He also is the recipient of the 2014 President of The Republic of The Gambia National Leadership Award and National (Gambia) Merit Insignia awards (ORG) and (MRG). He completed his BSc, MSc, advanced diploma and Ph.D. at the Stevens Institute of Technology, NJ. He also holds an MSc in financial engineering from The George Washington University, a Postgraduate in Strategy & Innovation from University of Oxford, an advanced leadership certificate from University of Cambridge and a certified international director and certificate in corporate governance from INSEAD.
Alice 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. She has spent her career working to find ways in which companies and investors can have a meaningful impact beyond financial returns. Her strong network enables her to draw in people with the right expertise for specific projects when needed.
Before establishing Impact Value, Alice 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 (which seeks to align capital markets with a sustainable future through Carbon Tracker and Planet Tracker), 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. Alice is also working with the University of Cambridge Institute of Sustainability Leadership to develop and tutor their course on sustainable finance.
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