e s i r p r e t n E e h T t n e m p o l e v e D . e m m a Progr 09/10
w 20 Annual Revie
For further information contact: Hugo Sintes EDP Manager 01865 472 221 or firstname.lastname@example.org Kyle Johnson EDP contact 01865 473 915 or email@example.com Annie Lewis EDP contact in Scotland 0141 285 8873 or firstname.lastname@example.org
Annual Review 2009/10 CO N TENTS Proud to be different People Director’s introduction A snapshot of the portfolio Manager’s review EDP’s remarkable women Current portfolio: Colombia Ethiopia Haiti Honduras Indonesia Liberia Occupied Palestinian Territories Russia Sri Lanka St Lucia Tanzania New portfolio: Ethiopia Nepal Occupied Palestinian Territories Pakistan Philippines Rwanda EDP and the Virgin London Marathon
4 5 6 8 10 12 15 16 18 20 22 24 26 28 30 32 34 36 39 40 41 42 43 44 45 46
“Oxfam successfully supported our business at a critical moment. We now want to become one of the leading companies in the sector.” Daoud Istanbuli, New Food Company, Occupied Palestinian Territories 3
Proud to be different The Enterprise Development Programme (EDP) adopts a private equity approach to building sustainable businesses. We invest where others don’t go and where the potential for social impact is highest.
With your support, Oxfam provides an intelligent mix of loans and grants to small and medium enterprises throughout the developing world, helping people to work their way out of poverty. But it’s not just about providing capital. It’s about identifying business opportunities, and helping entrepreneurs develop and implement viable business plans. It’s a pioneering, businessbased approach to development. EDP is unique and it works. It combines Oxfam’s international presence and experience with the finance and expertise of our supporters and partners. It creates wealth and drives change in poor communities. Crucially, it helps many thousands of people – especially women – to work their way out of poverty. 4 > Proud to be different
“Oxfam is developing a blueprint for promoting and investing in small and medium enterprises in the most marginalised parts of the world.” Vincenzo Morelli, EDP Board Member
Advisers to the Committee
The EDP Board provides both direction and financial oversight, shaping EDP’s long-term strategy and making informed decisions concerning specific businesses. Board members also support fundraising activity on an ongoing basis.
The EDP Investment Committee (IC) of experts analyses potential new EDP investments, assesses the risk and return of each proposal, and makes considered recommendations to the Board. For enterprises that join the programme, the IC monitors performance and risk, whilst supporting their development in order to ensure ongoing commercial viability and sustainability.
All EDP enterprises benefit from the support of specialist global and regional staff, covering issues such as climate change and gender equality, as well as monitoring and evaluation.
Penny Lawrence EDP Director, International Director, Oxfam Joss Saunders EDP Chair, Legal Counsel and Company Secretary, Oxfam Vincenzo Morelli TPG Capital, founder Board Member David Gait Maitri Trust, founder Board Member Andrew Nicholson Virgin London Marathon Jo Barnett Virgin London Marathon Sandy Arbuthnot Private supporter Gita Patel Stargate Capital Investment Group
Chris West Shell Foundation David Irwin Irwin Grayson Associates
Karl Hughes Global Adviser – Programme Effectiveness, Oxfam Thalia Kidder Senior Global Adviser – Women’s Livelihoods, Oxfam Alan Doran Business and Finance Adviser, Oxfam
David Pitt-Watson Hermes Focus Asset Management David Bright Global Markets and Enterprise Adviser, Oxfam Nicholas Colloff Director, Strategy and Innovation, Oxfam Hugo Sintes EDP Manager, Oxfam
Two years have passed since Oxfam’s Enterprise Development Programme (EDP) approved its first round of investments in June 2008. Our vision was to develop a model for supporting and investing in small (bigger than micro-) enterprises in places financial institutions do not reach. We sought to promote a different, more businesslike approach to economic development, more ambitious than conventional livelihoods initiatives whilst underpinned by robust commercial disciplines. As EDP began to build momentum, the need to place women at its core emerged as an additional strategic focus. Consequently, all of our enterprises now ensure that significant opportunities are created for women, often the most marginalised people in poor rural areas. Today, this vision for EDP is rapidly becoming a reality. We
6 > Director’s introduction
have selected, supported and invested in 11 enterprises (increasing to 16 from September 2010) and have seen substantial progress, both in terms of each business and in the evolution of EDP as a whole. Indeed, some enterprises are beginning to deliver economic returns and are helping many people to work their way out of poverty. This second year has, however, seen a number of significant events – namely the economic downturn, political upheaval and natural disasters – which have directly affected individual enterprises in the portfolio. Our vegetable-growing enterprise
in Honduras witnessed a coup d’état, and two of EDP’s dairyfarming operations, in Sri Lanka and Colombia, have been operating in a context of armed conflict. In Haiti, the devastating earthquake that struck Port-auPrince in January 2010 destroyed Veterimed’s central building and tragically killed two of their staff. The fact that, despite these challenges, people living in poverty have set up, rebuilt and invested in their enterprises, makes us proud to be their co-investors. As we finalise this report, the enterprise that EDP supports
in Pakistan is facing the terrible effects of widespread floods; we are fully committed to helping them to get themselves back on track. In spite of such varied challenges, Oxfam’s support has led to significant successes. The New Farm Company in the Occupied Palestinian Territories has almost doubled its sales in the last year and is now sourcing from 13 co-operatives where women constitute 76 per cent of the membership. In Tanzania and Colombia, agreements were reached with important buyers that will source from Oxfam-supported businesses. In addition, all of our enterprises appointed new staff and mentors. These are the seeds for future growth. We have also successfully laid foundations that will enable us to achieve considerable social returns from our investments, particularly in terms of job creation and empowering vulnerable groups. Such impacts are built into every business plan, forming a
critical part of each enterprise’s poverty-reduction strategy. For example, in Ethiopia, Assosa has granted women exclusive rights for the distribution of their edible oil – a radical departure from traditional Ethiopian social norms. Naturally, all of this good work would not be possible without the support of our donors. I am pleased to confirm that we have raised £3 million towards the £6 million target that will allow us to make around 30 investments by 2013. We are also delighted to welcome several new Board members, including two representatives of the Virgin London Marathon. This is particularly exciting because, in 2011, Oxfam will be the official Virgin London Marathon charity. But, of course, our generous Board Members give EDP more than their money; they give their time and expertise, helping us in matters ranging from enterprise assessment to portfolio management. This is a relatively new way of working for Oxfam and I am delighted to say that it has proven to
be extremely effective. Another particularly gratifying sign of EDP’s success has been the energy invested by everyone who contributes to this exciting initiative. This, combined with the quality of potential investments being identified, bodes extremely well and I would like to thank our supporters, staff, local partners and, of course, our enterprises for their commitment to EDP. I look forward to sharing new lessons and successes with you in 12 months’ time.
Penny Lawrence Director, Enterprise Development Programme Penny is International Director at Oxfam, a post she has held since 2006. She was previously Director of International Programmes at VSO (Voluntary Service Overseas) and Vice-Chair of BOND, the leading network of UK-based INGOs.
A snapshot of the portfolio Summary of committed and realised expenditure per enterprise, as of June 2010.
St Lucia/Belle Vue, fruit and vegetables
Drawn (% of total)
Occupied Palestinian Territories/NFC, food £120,000
Indonesia/Pacomen, vanilla Liberia/AMENU, rice
Haiti/Lèt Agogo, dairy
Sub total cohort 1
Ethiopia/Assosa, sesame oil
Sri Lanka/Vavuniya, dairy
Sub total cohort 2
Total (both cohorts)
All investments typically take the form of a loan. Business grants support enterprise management and development, while project grants support areas such as the promotion of opportunities for women, local management and impact measurement. This summary does not include cohort 3 enterprises approved in June 2010, which represent an additional investment of approximately £1m, taking the total funds committed to £2.5m.
8 > A snapshot of the portfolio
EDP funding committed by market sector
24% Processed food
22% Dairy 18% Fruit and vegetables 6% Grains 6% Non-food 10% Fibres or other 9% Honey
Photo: Crispin Hughes/Oxfam
With support from EDP, beekeepers in Zembaba, Ethiopia, will be able to access new markets for their honey. More on page 40.
Having spent a number of years running microcredit programmes in Central America, I understand the obstacles micro-enterprises face in trying to graduate into solid, formal small and medium enterprises. These include the need to undertake in-depth market analysis, put in place effective business management support and secure access to capital. Of course, if you are a woman or a group of women, you’ll also need the confidence and support to break through barriers created by decades of exclusion. Oxfam’s Enterprise Development Programme effectively overcomes these challenges. As in any investment portfolio, performance varies and we are working closely with all of our enterprises to help them become sustainable, wellmanaged businesses. We are
10 > Manager’s review
well aware of the difficulties of investing in the earlieststage enterprises in one of the toughest sectors: rural, remote and, usually, agricultural-related businesses in poor countries. But this is where Oxfam can add real value. It’s also where, we believe, success is not only possible but very much needed. In the last year and despite the challenges listed in Penny’s introduction, enterprises in the portfolio achieved increases in sales averaging 15 per cent. Given that most of these are one to three years old, and have only been in EDP’s portfolio for a year, we believe that this is a very
positive indicator. Conversely, the six businesses that have begun trading have only achieved 50 per cent of their forecasted firstyear sales. The resulting lesson for our Investment Committee has been to insist on greater scrutiny, while ensuring that future business plans include more realistic growth forecasts. In addition, our Board has advised that an EDP Contingency Fund is set up to support enterprises that require additional financing until requisite sales levels are achieved; a mechanism used effectively in Ethiopia by Assosa. We are putting a lot of effort into improving the frequency,
relevance and quality of financial reporting and this remains a focus area for our enterprises. EDP enterprises’ sales range from zero or just £10,000 to as much as £200,000 per annum, but even the larger ones still need Oxfam’s support to develop their financial management capacity as accounting skills are scarce in most EDP locations. Consequently, the EDP Board has stipulated that all enterprises provide more regular financial information, an area in which I will now be supported by our newly appointed Finance Adviser, Alan Doran. Alan also leads on the set up of loan agreements through local financial intermediaries, and I am delighted to be able to announce that we have just received repayment of EDP’s first enterprise loan. This very positive outcome is an example of the endeavour and tenacity of EDP’s business partners. It also suggests that the EDP model can be successful. In the last year, we have also refined our analysis and support
to ensure that women benefit from, and play a leadership role in, the businesses. This has entailed carefully choosing which enterprises and products to support, giving business training and persuading community leaders and men to act differently. Similarly, in recognition of the fact that unreliable weather patterns have emerged as a critical challenge across the portfolio, we are now undertaking more rigorous analysis of potential climate-related risks whilst helping enterprises and communities to develop effective adaptation plans. Despite the successes and process improvements outlined above, unforeseen occurrences have caused noticeable delays in the implementation of three business plans in particular. In addition to the obvious example of Haiti, we have been unable to provide support to the enterprise in St Lucia after Oxfam’s local office closed. In Liberia, disappointingly, scheduled improvements to the water infrastructure were
also delayed. Appropriate actions have been taken to address each of these cases. We remain very positive, and expect next year to be as busy as this last one. With the amazing commitment of Oxfam staff, members of the Board and Investment Committee, and all our local partners, mentors and enterprises, I am sure every second of it will be worthwhile. I feel we are on to something big, and am extremely motivated looking forward.
Hugo Sintes Manager, Enterprise Development Programme Hugo has more than 11 years of experience in enterprise development and finance in both the private and voluntary sectors. He has been at Oxfam for three years and has been EDP Manager since January 2009.
EDP’s remarkable women Women are at the heart of the success of EDP – and our enterprise in the Occupied Palestinian Territories provides the perfect example.
“The co-operative brings in useful money that helps in the home and with the education of our children.” Huda Shadeed
We know that women in rural areas don’t get the same opportunities as men, even though they do most of the work on the farm and in the home. Women also tend to have responsibility for family welfare, which means they’re more likely to spend their income on family priorities such as health, education and food. The New Farm Company in the Occupied Palestinian Territories (see pages 28 and 42) is an excellent example of how, by placing women at the heart of the process, EDP can help people build profitable enterprises that have a farreaching social impact. To raise
12 > EDP’s remarkable women
awareness of this success, Oxfam invited Elizabeth Handy, the acclaimed portrait photographer, and her husband Charles, a universally respected management writer, to profile four women, each leaders of one of the co-operatives supported by this project. These included women like Huda Shadeed, Purchasing Manager for the Duda Co-operative Society, whose main product is couscous. “We also make our own pickles, pastries and sweets, and do some catering for the local schools,” she says. “The cooperative brings in useful money that helps in the home and with the education of our children. We
want to prove, as women, that we have control over our own destiny.” “Each of these co-operatives is led by a passionate and determined woman,” adds Charles Handy. “Individuals who have created a viable business out of nothing, worked with and given new life to many other women, enhanced their own well-being as well as the future of their children, and provided inspiring examples of leadership.” The Handys’ photographic study is now being exhibited in centres of business across the UK. The photographs and stories provide inspiring examples of how business at its best can transform lives.
Photos: Elizabeth Handy
For more information about this exhibition go to www.oxfam.org.uk/edp
“We also make our own pickles, pastries and sweets and do some catering for the local schools. I even do a bit of embroidery for sale, when I have time. “The co-operative also helps us to build social relationships and to expand our worlds. We want to prove, as women, that we have control over our destinies.” Huda Shadeed (pictured, far left), Purchasing Manager of the Dura Co-operative Society
Collecting milk in Sri Lanka. See page 32.
Current portfolio Over the last year, EDP has been supporting 11 enterprises in markets as diverse as dairy, vanilla, microfinance, food oils, sisal and vegetables. The following pages provide an insight into each of these businesses, including their economic and social goals and their progress to date.
â€œIn those days, it would be mostly my husband who earned and we would use his earnings. Now, I am eating from my salary. I am also earning an income.â€? Pavalarasa Saro, dairy farmer, Sri Lanka
Colombia Dairy products Enterprise Alliance of four enterprises supplying milk to Alpina: Ascamp, Monterrey, Cooproler, Asoinpa Key contacts Harold Muñoz (Ascamp), Adrián Ramírez (Monterrey), Jesús A. Realpe (Cooproler) Product Fresh milk Market Colombia Investment £122,000: £0 loan, £55,000 business grant, £67,000 project grant, over three years (since end-2009) Impacts sought
> Increase income for 204 producers by 60 per cent > Pilot a successful model of collaboration between farmers and a large company > Increase participation of women
The background The Colombian dairy sector has been growing steadily and, despite a small drop in national consumption in the last year, it offers our enterprises significant opportunities for growth. Oxfam is working with Alpina (one of the largest dairy companies in Colombia) to strengthen four of its small-scale dairy suppliers. This is an innovative collaboration as it takes place in a country where conflict has created low levels of trust between farmers, business, NGOs and government.
16 > Current portfolio
Each of the four enterprises is owned by, or sources from, on average, 50 farmers. They have formed an alliance to improve their competitiveness and strengthen their relationship with Alpina. The four enterprises seek to improve the quality of milk, achieve economies of scale, and promote women’s empowerment.
All key milestones set out in June 2009 were met, including: > Set up of the business alliance and a project committee with representation from farmers, Oxfam, Alpina and the project mentor. > Recruitment of the mentor – a vet with ten years’ experience in the industry – who is at present prioritising the quality of the produce. > Identification of roles and opportunities for women. A survey showed that women play an important – albeit invisible – role and rarely receive training. This information has been critical in adjusting the project to ensure better social outcomes.
Ethiopia Food oil Enterprise Assosa Farmers’ Enterprise Key contacts Ashenafi Mengistu (Manager) Product Food oil from sesame, groundnuts, soya and other crops Market Local (oil) and export (oil seeds) Investment £201,000: £111,000 loan, £26,000 business grant, £64,000 project grant, over two years Impacts sought
> Increase economic and social security for oil-crop farmers > Increase household income by 35 per cent (on average) > Increase women’s participation in organisations by 50 per cent
The background Ethiopia is one of the seven poorest countries in the world and has deep-rooted gender inequalities. Vegetable oils are an essential part of local diets and seed-based oils are especially valued. By processing seeds into oil, the Assosa Farmers’ Enterprise is taking advantage of the rapid expansion of sesame seed production in the western region of Benishangul Gumuz. In the last year, late and erratic rainfall caused a 50 per cent decline in yields, but the devaluation of the Ethiopian Birr has led to higher prices for imported goods, including imported palm oil (the price of which has risen by 35 per cent). The opportunity for processing and marketing oil locally therefore remains very attractive.
18 > Current portfolio
The business The Assosa Farmers’ Enterprise comprises 20 producer organisations which represent 5,400 farmers. Despite its experience in seeds, processing into oil represents a new challenge – but one with major potential.
The progress While the initiative is very new, most milestones defined for the first period have been met. Conversely, the procurement of new machinery proved to be more complicated than originally anticipated, delaying the start of oil-processing activities. > The loan management agreement with the financial intermediary was signed and funds have been disbursed.
> Oxfam and our partners have facilitated the establishment of women traders’ associations in each of the 20 member cooperatives, and provided business training. > The mentor is in place, and Assosa’s accounting capacity has been established. Oxfam is working with the enterprise to produce more regular cash-flows; this was agreed as a condition for follow-on investment (needed to make up for the delay to the start of oil processing). > An agreement has also been made with the local government to acquire land for two seed-multiplication centres, to be managed by 150 women members. > 570 farmers (228 women) received training with the aim of increasing productivity by 30 per cent.
> Assosa has committed to giving women distribution rights for sesame oil in local villages, a major step in a very conservative region.
Haiti Dairy products Enterprise Lèt Agogo/Veterimed Key contacts Rosanie Germain (Manager) Product Dairy products: milk, yoghurt, cheese Market Haiti Investment £125,000: £34,000 loan, £68,000 business grant, £23,000 project grant (since end-2008) Impacts sought
> Create stable trading relationships for 2,500 farmers > Increase number of dairy units from 13 to 25 > Increase market share from 0.4 per cent to 5 per cent > Increase women’s representation in producer groups by 30 per cent
The background Even before it was struck by the devastating earthquake of January 2010 – which killed an estimated 230,000 people and left more than one million homeless – Haiti had endured a tumultuous political and economic past. Veterimed, the Haitian NGO which runs the Lèt Agogo dairy network, was severely affected by the earthquake: two members of staff and seven family members were killed; the Central Unit building was destroyed; two of the local franchises were damaged; and office equipment, dairy infrastructure, delivery carts and thousands of bottles were lost. Local markets have shrunk, as supermarkets, schools, hotels and restaurants are not yet fully operational. But, as of June 2010, there are some positive signs: schools, one of the network’s key markets, are re-opening, and milk is also being sold through the emergency responses of organisations like Oxfam. 20 > Current portfolio
Lèt Agogo is an initiative of Veterimed, a Haitian NGO with 15 years’ experience. It has built a national network of 13 dairies that turn local producers’ milk into pasteurised milk, yoghurt and cheese, which are then sold commercially across Haiti. Veterimed also manages a Central Unit that provides overall management and support. Despite the devastating impact of the earthquake, Lèt Agogo’s ambition remains strong. It has been able to secure new offices and is seeking funding to restore its capacity to pre-earthquake levels.
Progress before the earthquake was slow due to a slight decrease in Oxfam’s in-country capacity and the focus on developing a common agenda with Veterimed and its other backers. However, despite these difficult circumstances, progress has been made in various areas: > A partnership was piloted with financial intermediary Konsèy National Finansman Popilè. > The network has 11 functioning dairies, plus two which are severely damaged, and five which are in the process of joining the network. > An independent evaluation showed that the income from milk sales of Lèt Agogo farmers was three times higher than that of non-Oxfam-supported farmers.
Photos on right: Suzi O’Keefe/Oxfam
> Veterimed employed 150 people (excluding its 10,000 supplier farmers). Women constitute 46 per cent of staff and are represented on the board. > The EDP Board approved the use of the newly set up EDP contingency fund to help Veterimed restore its capacity.
Honduras Vegetables Enterprise Aproalce Key contacts Danilo Sauceda (Manager) and Juan Pacheco (Chair) Product Fresh vegetables (potato, cabbage, carrot, cauliflower and broccoli) Market Local wholesale markets, supermarkets and other markets in Honduras Investment £175,000: £99,000 loan, £58,000 business grant, £18,000 project grant, over three years (since mid-2009) Impacts sought > Double production over three years > Increase income for 400 farmers by 40 per cent > Develop Aproalce so it becomes sustainable
The background The June 2009 coup d’état – eventually resolved in a contested election – and the global recession created unfavourable conditions for investment in Honduras. GDP has declined by 4 per cent and US remittances by 10.9 per cent. The agricultural sector in Honduras employs around 52 per cent of the population; however, small-scale producers have been marginalised by the government. Those in the western region have been particularly badly affected, and are facing social, political and economic exclusion. Despite this, and recent political instability, agriculture is still a sector with great potential. Oxfam remains fully committed to supporting Aproalce, an enterprise with the capability to become an important business in the western region, one of the poorest areas in Honduras.
22 > Current portfolio
The business Aproalce is a producer organisation that sells high-value vegetables to local and national markets, and neighbouring countries. It is governed by a general assembly and a board of directors (four men, four women). Most farmers are also members of local savings groups.
The progress The political situation is now stable and, although recent problems have had a negative impact on sales, the enterprise has met all of its key milestones, including: > Staff – including general and accounting managers – were recruited, as well as a mentor. > Women now constitute 50 per cent of Aproalce’s members and hold 40 per cent of senior posts. Women are taking on new roles (for example, working on their own land or participating in market activities) and are being offered special terms and conditions by local savings groups. However, domestic duties remain a big obstacle to women’s full participation. > Aproalce now sells its produce in bulk weekly consignments to supermarkets across two local towns, and negotiations are at an advanced stage with other significant prospective buyers.
Indonesia Vanilla Enterprise Pacomen and vanilla growers Key contacts Apolos Mora (Village Leader) Product Organic vanilla Market Local, national and international Investment ÂŁ117,000 of grants, over two-and-a-half years (since end-2008) Impacts sought > Pilot a profitable business model for the production and marketing of vanilla > Increase income for 200 farmers by 10 per cent > Increase participation of women
The background Serui Island, west Papua, has been affected by conflict and remains the poorest province of Indonesia. However, local village communities have identified, and are beginning to capitalise on, market opportunities that take advantage of the islandâ€™s climatic conditions and natural resources. One of the best examples is in the production of vanilla, which is not widespread in Papua despite Indonesia being a significant global exporter. Indeed, the overall outlook for the vanilla market is very positive as Indonesian prices have remained strong despite a reduction in global prices.
24 > Current portfolio
The business At the beginning of this initiative, whilst there was no formal enterprise, there was a group of committed farmers keen to grow organic vanilla for export. In the last year, Oxfam has worked closely with the Papua Commodity Marketing Enterprise (Pacomen) – a small enterprise with experience in trading cocoa – which will source from ten groups of 20 farmers supported by EDP’s investment.
The progress Despite a slow start due to difficulties identifying and recruiting staff, significant progress has been made in a number of areas. Key milestones met include:
> Women are playing an increasingly prominent role; they constitute half of all farmers, form 60 per cent of the Pacomen workforce, and have representation on the enterprise board.
> Demonstration plots have been set up and 200 farmers have received training and started cultivating vanilla on their own land.
> Engagement with local authorities has delivered notable success. The local government has committed to supporting the agricultural sector and vanilla production in the region; and Oxfam will be
> Further business training has been given to Pacomen’s management, in partnership with Cenderawasih University (the largest state university in the region). > A market survey for vanilla was carried out and buyers have been identified in Java and Sulawesi islands.
sitting in planning meetings with the government. After this report was submitted, an earthquake struck the islands and as a result it has been impossible to reach the communities. We hope to resume our support soon.
Liberia Rice Enterprise AMENU Farmers’ Co-operative Society Key contacts John Brownell (Agency for Economic Development and Empowerment) Product Rice Market South-east Liberia Investment £149,000: £126,000 business grants, £24,000 project grants, over two-and-a-half years (since end-2008) Impacts sought > Double production and increase food security > Increase income for over 1,000 farmers by 80 per cent > Increase participation of women
The background Decades of violent conflict, sparked by the rice riots of 1979, devastated Liberia. While the political situation is now stable, the country remains heavily reliant on imports of rice, its main staple food, despite having extensive cultivable land and favourable climatic conditions for rice production. In a concerted effort to remedy this situation and bypass the price volatility of the international rice market, local authorities and private sector players are actively pursuing plans to promote local rice production.
26 > Current portfolio
The AMENU Farmersâ€™ Co-operative Society has 1,008 members working in rice cultivation. The paddy fields are not reliably irrigated, since the dams were broken during the war, and â€“ at best â€“ give one, low-yield crop of rice per year. During the first phase (December 2008 to June 2010), the plan has been to support one rice production cycle on up to 504 acres, and rebuild irrigation systems to allow for a second harvest.
This is one of the poorest, most remote and least developed areas in which EDP operates. As a direct consequence of associated challenges, AMENU farmers required additional time and finance in order to clear and prepare communal land. Project implementation was delayed and a second harvest in 2010 was not possible. In spite of this delay, progress areas include: > Construction and repair of dams and canals is at an advanced stage but is not complete. Additional work is required to improve structures and it has been decided that this will be carried out by a new engineering company. > EDP provided technical assistance which has resulted in an improvement to both agricultural production processes and business management. > The initiative has secured funds from the EU for its next phase, which will expand irrigation, production and processing capacities, while also building grain stocks to reduce food insecurity. It will reach 2,000 farmers (50 per cent of them women).
Occupied Palestinian Territories Natural foods Enterprise The New Farm Company (NFC) Key contacts Daoud Istanbuli (Manager), Mohammed Sawafta (Oxfam) Product Natural Palestinian foods Market Occupied Palestinian Territories, Arab Gulf Investment £120,000: £10,000 loan, £90,000 business grant, £20,000 project grant, over two years (since end-2008) Impacts sought > Increase sales by 15 per cent in the short to medium term > Increase income for over 2,000 farmers by up to 30 per cent > Increase opportunities for, and income of, women
The background While the political and economic context of the occupation remains challenging, the West Bank economy is witnessing positive economic growth. This initiative addresses the factors that keep people living in poverty, including lack of employment and livelihood opportunities, and the political issues that hinder business. Production and labour costs are considerably lower in the West Bank than elsewhere in the region. This offers a competitive edge for small-scale producers so they can market agricultural products which require basic processing.
28 > Current portfolio
The business The New Farm Company (NFC) markets the products produced by eight rural cooperatives in the West Bank. Most of these co-operatives are also shareholders of NFC. A significant percentage of the project beneficiaries are women, who are more likely to be involved in food-processing activities.
The progress Progress has been very good, and in order to expand its operations the company has requested follow-on investment (approved in June 2010). > There has been solid progress in terms of sales growth, and 2009 saw a small profit after a large loss the previous year. Sales almost doubled, with total income increasing by 112 per cent. The figures represented 76 per cent of the first-year target, but are still very positive. > NFC’s products are reaching 70 supermarkets in the West Bank (quadrupling its presence since 2008).
> NFC has signed supply contracts with three large food importers in Saudi Arabia and Jordan. > The enterprise is providing regular financial information, although the quality needs some improvement. > Social impact has been very positive. The enterprise selects products that not only have market potential but are also from cooperatives that have a high participation of women. Overall, farmers’ income increased by eight per cent last year. NFC has also joined a Steering Committee that meets with the Ministry of Agriculture to support the design of policies which promote the local food sector. > Repayment of the loan has been agreed for September 2010. A recent photographic study by Liz Handy, with comments from Charles Handy, depicts the successes of some of the ‘Remarkable Women’ involved in NFC’s supply chain. See pages 12-13.
Russia Microcredit Enterprise Forus Bank Key contacts Tatiana Vladimirovna Yurina (Director) Product Microcredit services Market Micro-entrepreneurs in central Russia Investment ÂŁ169,000: ÂŁ122,000 loan, ÂŁ47,000 project grant, over two years (since mid-2008) Impacts sought > Reach over 1,300 new clients, supporting 650 new jobs > Increase household income by 30 per cent
The background Russia is an urbanised, middle-income society, but some rural areas and small towns remain very poor. Small businesses represent only four per cent of GDP (compared to 30-35 per cent in other developed countries) and face many obstacles. While a systemic banking crisis was averted in Russia, lending to small businesses and households fell dramatically during 2009.
30 > Current portfolio
The business Forus Bank is a regional microfinance bank which provides credit and other financial services to small and medium enterprises. In contrast to other enterprises in the EDP portfolio, this is a well established business which Oxfam is helping to reach vulnerable groups. The global crisis led to losses being made in 2009, but the bank had returned to profit in March 2010.
The progress Taking into account the economic slowdown and severe pressures on the bank, overall progress has been good. Highlights include: > Mobile banking (by van) is now a reality. From August 2008 to March 2010, the project generated a total of 391 new credits from six regional mobile offices, covering 70 locations. > The introduction of three ATM machines, and the Forus plastic card, has been very successful. These are used in conjunction with a wide range of Forus products, including micro-loans and overdraft facilities. An agreement was also reached with a large financial institution allowing Forus cards to be used for loan repayments without fees at ATMs, and at 75,000 terminals in kiosks. > In terms of social impact, the percentage of women borrowers remains high â€“ 76 per cent overall. > The loan element of EDPâ€™s investment has been fully repaid. 31
Sri Lanka Dairy products Enterprise Vavuniya District Livestock Breeders’ Co-operative Societies Union (VLBCSU) Key contacts Ms Indraganthy (President, VLBCSU) Product Fresh milk and other milk products, including plain and flavoured pasteurised milk, ghee, toffee, yoghurt and ice cream Market Local villages and towns in Vavuniya, northern Sri Lanka Investment £125,000: £54,000 loan, £51,000 business grant, £20,000 project grant, over three years (since end-2009) Impacts sought
> Increase income of 1,500 producers by 20 per cent > Provide new employment opportunities for women in management, food processing, collection, transport and marketing
The background Sri Lanka has one of the lowest rates of milk production in Asia. Oxfam and other partners identified the opportunity for developing local supply, and helping women play a leadership role. However, the area of Vavuniya has been affected by conflict which has displaced an estimated 300,000 people. After the government’s intervention in 2009, a post-conflict economic recovery is beginning. The government is promoting the dairy sector, for example by organising the redistribution of stray cattle to resettlers. The local demand for milk is growing, partially from the 100,000 people who, until earlier this year, had been living in centres for Internally Displaced People (IDP).
32 > Current portfolio
VLBCSU, the District dairy co-operative, is part of the national network of dairy co-operatives. It functions as a collection, processing, marketing and distribution company for milk and dairy products. With the support of EDP, VLBCSU intends to start a home delivery system, secure a contract with the Department of Education, and promote new products.
In spite of the conflict, the project has made significant progress on a number of its key goals: > Member co-operatives are already increasing production and expanding local distribution. Four of them are managed mainly by women, and others are increasing the proportion of women in their membership. > The appointment of a financial intermediary to manage the equipment loan is almost finalised; a business mentor (Head of the Business Faculty) has been appointed. > The central processing unitâ€™s operations have not yet started, but the site has been acquired and cleared, equipment selected and sourced and, once the building is completed, production should begin. > Negotiations are taking place with a large national processing firm, with a view to ensuring that there is a stronger alignment between the companyâ€™s and farmersâ€™ interests. > Evidence suggests that additional income from milk sales is being used for a variety of purposes including school fees, house improvements and buying livestock.
St Lucia Fruit and vegetables Enterprise Belle Vue Farmers’ Co-operative Society Ltd Key contacts Raphael Felix (Manager) Product Fresh fruit and vegetables Market Local hotels and restaurants Investment £50,000 of grants (reduced from £170,000 over three years) Impacts sought > Increase market share from 10 to 25 per cent > Increase income for 800 farmers > Improve women’s leadership and status > Improve national policy and create model for replication
The background St Lucia has a well developed tourism industry which generates an annual income of £200 million. It also has an advanced agricultural sector, but this has suffered due to the decline in the banana trade and limited opportunities for small-scale farmers. Recent increases in food prices, coupled with concerns over the deteriorating health of the population, have led to the establishment of policies that assist agricultural development and diversification. These factors suggest that aligning the local agricultural sector with the thriving tourism sector can provide the region with an avenue to maintain its current rate of growth, as well as create jobs and foster sustainable development.
34 > Current portfolio
for similar initiatives on other islands.
Belle Vue is a rural marketing, production and distribution company, providing high quality, local produce to the tourism sector. The company has established trading relations with large hotel chains.
The progress In the last 12 months, there has been very little expenditure on Oxfam-funded activities. Indeed, due to the economic recession, Oxfam had to close down our Caribbean offices, leaving no permanent local staff to support the project. Repeated attempts to recruit a local project manager have ended in failure. For this reason the EDP Board approved the decision not to renew our financial commitments for years two and three. Despite these difficulties, the company managed a small growth in sales in 2009 and has been successfully diversifying into other markets, so we remain positive about its potential. The idea of building links between local farmers and the hotel industry has also caught on in the region, and Oxfam has provided advice
Tanzania Sisal Enterprise 15 processor firms Key contacts Salum Shamte (Katani Ltd) and Stephen Kijazi (Oxfam) Product Sisal Market Katani Ltd and, ultimately, local, regional and national markets Investment £151,000: £63,000 loan, £45,000 business grant, £43,000 project grant, over three years (since mid-2009) Impacts sought > Increase income for 16,500 small-scale producers by 25 per cent > After ten years, women should account for 40 per cent of producers and 20 per cent of processor owners
The background Approximately 80 per cent of people in Tanzania derive their income from subsistence agriculture. Women undertake a significant and disproportionately high percentage of the agricultural workload, in addition to bearing almost full responsibility for the care of children, the sick and the elderly. The sisal sector provides an opportunity to address this imbalance, as there is a significant under-supply of processed sisal and sisal products in local, national and international markets. The Tanzania Sisal Board expects national and regional demand for sisal fibre to double over the next three years.
36 > Current portfolio
Oxfam has partnered Katani Ltd, a sisal processing and marketing company seeking to expand its supply chain by linking with more smallholder growers. Katani purchases processed sisal, and provides training and loans to rural processors so they can buy processing machines and sisal from local farmers.
This initiative has great potential for developing strong links between rural communities and an established corporation, and has made good progress on a number of its key milestones:
Despite the global recession, Katani has maintained its sales of items such as ropes, carpets and bags. The initiative is supported by the Accenture Foundation, and is assisting wider efforts by the public and private sectors to increase production capacity in the region. With Oxfamâ€™s support, five processor firms are to be set up in year one, followed by a further ten in year two.
> The priority has been setting up the partnership between Oxfam, farmers and Katani Ltd. The company is committed to this initiative and a Memorandum of Understanding was signed at the end of 2009. > A specialist agency has provided business training to executives and processors have received training that will enable them to increase output without compromising quality. > A regional sisal stakeholdersâ€™ workshop was attended by regional and district advisers, the national sisal board and association, and 46 sisal growers.
Drying vegetable seeds in Nepal. See page 41.
New portfolio In 2010/11 we plan to invest in six new projects, including phase two of our project in the Occupied Palestinian Territories. We’re excited about the variety of these new opportunities, from moringa leaf (used in medicine and as a food supplement) in the Philippines to mushrooms in Rwanda, and from honey and beehives in Ethiopia to vegetable seeds in Nepal.
“We received training in modern beekeeping methods, and we’re beginning to enjoy the benefits. We get much more honey than before. “Now I can buy basic necessities and send my children to school. I can buy clothes, pens and books for them. If we get additional, modern beehives, we will be able to sell more.” Mengiste Alemu, beekeeper, Ethiopia (see page 40)
Ethiopia Honey Enterprise Zembaba Honey and Inputs Marketing Key contacts Berihun Amsalu (General Manager), Gizachew Sisay (Oxfam) Product Honey; beehives and protective clothing Market Honey for export; beehives and other inputs for local markets Investment £237,000 (£89,000 in loans) over three years (under negotiation) Impacts sought > Create 25 jobs at the enterprise, plus support livelihoods of 3,500 farmers > Increase beekeepers’ income by 30 per cent > Promote women’s involvement and leadership
The background Around 85 per cent of Ethiopia’s 80 million population live in rural areas. Poverty is widespread, and is most acute in womenheaded households. However, economic opportunities exist, and honey is one of them. Beekeeping is already an important economic activity, yet productivity and quality are low because many of Ethiopia’s two million producers still use less efficient, traditional beekeeping methods. Export opportunities opened up when the EU approved Ethiopia as an exporter of honey
40 > New portfolio
in 2008, following a decline in global supply as a result of Colony Collapse Disorder (CCD). Today, there is a large global demand for honey, wax and other bee products. The introduction of modern hives could help to meet the new demand, increasing productivity by up to 400 per cent.
The business Zembaba is owned by nine cooperatives (with a total of 3,494 members, including 632 women) in the Amhara region. It sells honey and wax, and seeks to build modern hives and supply
protective clothing. Zembaba has partnered with Ambrosia plc, a company with the largest honey processing plant in Ethiopia.
The plan Key activities include: buying equipment to make beehives and protective clothing; training women beekeepers and local carpenters; and hiring business staff. Members can buy hives on credit to be paid off when their honey is sold. Zembaba’s vision is to develop into a profitable supplier of honey and beekeeping equipment that is co-owned and managed by women producers.
Nepal Seeds Enterprise Pabitra Co-operative Key contacts Mr Naulsingh Khatri (President), Ms Dharma K. Poudel (Senior Social Mobiliser) Product Vegetable seeds Market Local, regional and, later, Indian markets Investment £144,000 (£75,000 in loans) over three years Impacts sought > Increase income for over 1,000 farmers (target 60 per cent women) > Increase co-operative membership from 213 to 1,050 > Triple production of vegetable seeds under the brand name Himalayan Seeds
The background The Mid-Western and FarWestern regions of Nepal are among the poorest in the country. Discrimination against women is widespread; their education levels and incomes are lower than those of men, and men own the land. However, due to the seasonal migration of men to India, women have started to play a more prominent role in seed production. The production of vegetable seeds makes the best use of the limited cultivable land. It provides a higher financial return than cereals, and requires less water
and resources than vegetables. Demand is growing 25 per cent year-on-year; however, only 53 per cent of seeds consumed are actually produced in Nepal – despite imports being significantly more expensive.
The business The Pabitra Co-operative has 213 farmer members (30 per cent women) from 21 villages, and focuses on the five villages that are prime areas for seed cultivation. Pabitra currently provides training, micro-loans, fertilisers, seeds, medicines and agricultural equipment, and is starting to specialise in
the marketing of the seeds.
The plan Financial support will help to increase farmers’ production, open up new markets and improve product quality. Specifically, it will finance the purchase of machinery and equipment, provide working capital and contribute to staff salaries. Oxfam is collaborating with partners including the Environment Development Society (EDS) and the Center for Environmental and Agricultural Policy Research Extension and Development (CEAPRED), as well as local authorities.
Occupied Palestinian Territories Natural foods Enterprise The New Farm Company (NFC) Key contacts Dawood Istanbuli (Manager, NFC), Mohammed Sawafta (Oxfam) Product Natural Palestinian foods Market Occupied Palestinian Territories, Arab Gulf Investment £266,000 (£87,000 in loans) over two years (under negotiation) Impacts sought > Increase sales (including olive products) from £137,000 to £670,000 > Increase local market share from 5 per cent to 8 per cent over three years > Expand regional sales by 15 per cent per annum > Enter Fairtrade markets in Europe in 2012
Despite the economic and political constraints facing the West Bank, the food industry is growing. For the last few years the New Farm Company (NFC), which received support from Oxfam EDP between 2008 and 2010, has shown that it can be part of this growth. Creating opportunities for women is a challenge, but the particular approach used by NFC and our partner, the Economic and Social Development Centre (ESDC), has shown positive results.
EDP has supported NFC for two years (some of the successes of the first phase of investment are highlighted on pages 28-29). As a result, NFC’s products are well positioned; they are currently on the shelves of more than 70 supermarkets in the West Bank. Trading relationships with leading wholesalers have started and are projected to grow by 5-10 per cent annually. The company is looking to expand its market presence in Jordan and Saudi Arabia by strengthening relations with existing trading partners.
NFC is seeking support to acquire machinery and improve systems which are critical for its growth and positioning as a quality food provider. Specific activities include: buying a filling, capping and labelling machine for olive oil, honey and molasses; providing technical support to women on food production and processing; improving operational and finance systems; investing in export promotion and local marketing activities.
42 > New portfolio
Pakistan Dairy Enterprise Chenab Dairy Enterprise Key contacts Mr Khalid Ahmed, Ms Asiya Bibi (managers of two of the five co-operatives) Product Milk and milk-based products Market Local regional markets Investment £165,000 (£41,000 in loans) over two years (under negotiation) Impacts sought > Increase income by 20-30 per cent for approx 17,500 smallholder farmers > Ensure 50 per cent of co-operative members are women > Ensure women have 60 per cent representation on the board of the enterprise
The background Around 17 per cent of Pakistan’s population live on less than a dollar a day. Women are unlikely to receive the same level of education as men, do not benefit from government policies, and are actively discouraged from participating in commercial ventures. The dairy sector offers significant opportunities for growth. Although Pakistan is among the five largest milk producers in the world, 97 per cent of its milk is distributed through an inefficient system of agents and middlemen. Smallholder
milk producers are often indebted to these middlemen and are unable to gain direct access to external markets.
The business Chenab Dairy Enterprise is a new start-up enterprise, consisting of more than 17,500 farmers from five co-operatives (two formed in 2009, plus three new cooperatives) in the Muzzaffargarh district of Punjab. The enterprise will work with Doaba Foundation, a local NGO which has been an Oxfam partner for five years. Its vision is to grow into a profitable dairy enterprise that will promote women’s economic leadership
and increase household income for smallholder farmers.
The plan The focus is on building capacity and providing training to increase sales and expand the range and quality of produce. The project will also carry out local campaigns to promote more equal gender relations. Farmers who join the district co-operatives will sell their produce collectively and ultimately secure a better price. In addition to selling fresh milk to an established corporate client, the enterprise will produce and sell high-margin milk-based products like khoya, cream and ghee to local markets.
As we finalise this report, floods have severely affected the area. Oxfam remains committed to supporting the enterprise’s plan but delays are expected.
Philippines Moringa leaves Enterprise Libas Farmers Multi-Purpose Co-operative Key contacts Nanie Lanquino (Manager), Agnes Bolaños (Enterprise Facilitator) Product Moringa leaves (pharmaceutical, personal care and food industries) Market Secura International, a medium-sized company selling to the pharmaceutical industry Investment £100,000 (£59,000 in loans) over 18 months (under negotiation) Impacts sought > Create 120 jobs for women in a seed nursery > Increase earnings by 300 per cent for 72 members (30 per cent women) > Involve 900 additional farmers after two to three years
natural dietary supplements.
have so far planted ten hectares
Nearly half the population of Caraga in Mindanao, south Philippines, live in poverty – double the national average. People rely on subsistence farming and fishing, but natural resources are diminishing. Women play a prominent role in family farms but earn no income and have little say in how they are run.
Oxfam is working with Secura
of moringa, and have had a first
International, a major supplier
harvest bought by Secura. This
of plant-based pharmaceutical
has led to the commitment to
products, which has called
plant a further 100 hectares.
In this context, the support for the moringa industry offers hope. There is a growing demand for the use of moringa in meals, herbal medicines and
44 > New portfolio
on the country to exploit the growing demand for moringa.
strong marketing company for
In the past, the Libas Farmers
moringa. Specific activities
Multi-Purpose Co-operative was
include: finalising negotiations
engaged in the production of
with Secura; training women to
coconut products, so moringa
manage the seed nursery; and
is relatively new. However, one
organising harvest festivals to
of Secura’s moringa processing
promote moringa farming. Loan
plants is just two hours from
finance is needed to promote
Libas members. Local farmers
access to working capital.
Libas aims to develop into a
Rwanda Mushrooms Enterprise BN Producers Key contacts Niyibaho Berthilde (Manager) Product Fresh and processed mushrooms Market Hotels and urban markets Investment £79,000 (£30,000 in loans) over 18 months (under negotiation) Impacts sought > Enable 30 women to achieve a minimum income of £20 per month > Support 300 women in the first 18 months (up to 900 women in three years) > Increase monthly production of fresh mushrooms from 600kg to 9,000kg
homes throughout the year,
one are women. Its growth has
Rwanda has witnessed economic
with little land or labour. With
been slowed by limited access to
growth in the last few years but
government support, some
committed suppliers and finance.
levels of poverty remain high.
women are already involved
Promoting new opportunities
in mushroom production.
is critical and challenging,
The challenge is to connect
BN plans to increase its
especially for women who face
them to reliable markets.
production and marketing
additional constraints such as caring responsibilities, limited
capacity by: establishing four collection and retail outlets which
access to assets, and cultural
Unlike other EDP projects, BN
sell to supermarkets and hotels;
Producers is a privately-owned
providing technical and business
growth is driving an increased
enterprise, which supplies dried
training; and providing finance
demand for fresh and processed
and fresh mushrooms to hotels and supermarkets. There are at
to 300 women so they can buy
mushrooms; a recent study showed that demand outstrips
present no other major suppliers
supply by 2:1. Mushrooms are
of mushrooms in the market.
suited to local climatic conditions
BN employs eight full-time staff,
and can be cultivated near
and 28 waged workers – all but
equipment and inputs. Its vision is to become the leading freshmushroom marketing company in Rwanda.
EDP and the Virgin London Marathon EDP projects will soon benefit from a new partnership between Oxfam and the Virgin London Marathon. Oxfam has been awarded Official Charity status for the 2011 race, and Oxfam’s runners will be fundraising for our projects in Ethiopia (sesame), Tanzania (sisal), Sri Lanka (dairy), and Honduras (vegetables). www.oxfam.org.uk/marathon
The Virgin London Marathon is now the biggest annual fundraising event in the world, raising in excess of £50 million every year for charities. Oxfam was selected after a hugely competitive process, and the innovative, entrepreneurial nature of EDP was a key factor in our successful pitch. Runners at the 2011 event are expected to generate more than £1 million additional income for Oxfam.
46 > EDP and the Virgin London Marathon
As well as raising money, this is a great opportunity to promote both EDP and the idea that business can change the lives of some of the world’s poorest communities. Oxfam’s runners will be able tell their sponsors that they’re helping people – especially women – to improve their business skills and gain access to finance and equipment, so they can work their way out of poverty.
Oxfamâ€™s Enterprise Development Programme uses a private equity approach to support small and medium enterprises in the developing world. Through strategic investments in sustainable businesses, EDP presents you with the chance to help thousands of people work their way out of poverty.
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