The Challenge Fund is an investment package put together by West African Food Markets in partnership with Palladium and UK Agency for International Development, UKaid. Their aim is to invest in agro-entrepreneurs with a business model that will strengthen national and regional trade in staple foods such maize, millet, sorghum and cassava along the Ghana-Burkina Faso and Nigeria-to-Niger trade corridors.
The objective of the partnership is to ensure that agro centred businesses have access to the necessary funds they require in order to increase availability of staple foods, increase purchasing power of farmers and consumers in food-insecure regions of West Africa.
To access the WAFM Challenge Fund, businesses or companies interested in bidding are expected to submit a project concept note which is a short summary of the business idea proposed and its commercial viability, the capacity of the company to implement the idea, the innovative nature of the idea and its potential impact.
Applicants should be able to prove to a panel that without WAFM funding, the project is unlikely to take off, or it may happen but at a reduced scale. Your business idea must also demonstrate development impact, the ultimate beneficiaries being the poor farmers in WAFM countries and consumers who will benefit from reduced or more stable prices for staple food. The grant amount requested must be between GBP 100,000 and GBP 1m, and companies should be able to show how they intend to make profit consistently.
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