The third and final call for the AgriFI Kenya Challenge Fund is now open for applications, from 9th October 2019 until 20 November 2019. The AgriFI Challenge Fund is an instrument to fund agri-business initiatives that include smallholder farmers in value chains. It provides a mix of grants (up to 50% of the total investment) and loans, through a dedicated financing facility established by Equity Bank Limited, with funding and support from the European Investment Bank and the European Union.
While launching the fund, EU Ambassador to Kenya Simon Mordue said: “Promotion of economic investment, job creation and trade are common priorities for the EU and Kenya. The launch of today’s call which will offer funding to up to 50 Agri-entrepreneurs is a further demonstration of our commitment to supporting the rise of Kenyan entrepreneurs up the value chain of production.“
The Fund’s specific objective is to integrate 100,000 smallholder farmers/pastoralists in sustainable value chains. By supporting and enabling at least 50 agri-enterprises to increase their turnover (by at least 25%), it will in turn increase incomes and food security for at least 100,000 smallholders/pastoralists and create a minimum of 10,000 jobs. Applications are appraised on a set of weighted criteria including: economic viability of the business, social impact on smallholder farmers and job creation, environmental impact (including adoption of climate smart approaches) and additionality. The Fund's allocation is 18 million euros.
The first call has been successfully allocated, with eight companies obtaining grants in July-August 2019. The second call is closed. 29 proposals are shortlisted and currently undergoing appraisal.
The third call foresees two windows. The first window foresees country wide support to investments (with no limitation in value chains) through matching grants between a minimum of 200,000 and a maximum of 750,000 euros. The second window is limited to investments in specific counties in Western, Nyanza, North Rift, South Rift, Northern and Coastal regions, with matching grants between 100,000 and 200,000 Euro, and has lower eligibility criteria, in order to facilitate access even for smaller size companies.
Applicants can download the guidelines on the website AgriFI Challenge Fund The guidelines list the criteria for eligibility and appraisal, and the modalities to apply.