On August 3, 2020, USAID/Zambia awarded a contract to ACDI/VOCA for the prime role of implementing the USAID Enterprise Development and Growth Enhanced (USAID EDGE) Activity. Representing a five-year investment of approximately ZMW 280 million (US$14 million) by the U.S. Government, USAID EDGE is designed to develop jobs, increase the profitability of Zambia’s small- and medium-sized agricultural enterprises, and help Zambia as it progresses on its journey to self-reliance.

Many Zambian agricultural enterprises currently struggle to access loans and financing, lack business management and technological resources, or have limited access to economic markets. Over the next five years, through USAID EDGE, ACDI/VOCA aims to boost their competitiveness by addressing these key constraints.

The USAID EDGE program will use a facilitative approach and work closely with and through local partners to drive lasting systemic changes that produce sustainable impact at scale. ACDI/VOCA will also apply its inclusive market systems approach, which addresses the root causes, rather than the symptoms, of a poorly performing market. Using this approach, USAID EDGE will focus on agricultural value chains with the most potential for long-term growth and sustainability.

The USAID EDGE contract marks the return of ACDI/VOCA to Zambia after a three-year hiatus. ACDI/VOCA last worked in Zambia in 2017 while implementing the USAID-funded Production, Finance, and Improved Technology Plus (USAID PROFIT+). Now those efforts will continue, as the USAID EDGE program builds upon the many achievements of USAID PROFIT+.

One such achievement was the establishment of more than 300 Zambian community agrodealers. USAID EDGE will work with these agrodealers as business advisors to help enterprise owners improve their business and financial management and incorporate evidence-based decision making, investment planning, contract negotiation, human resource management, customer service, and other skills.

Learn more about the USAID Zambia Enterprise Development and Growth Enhanced (EDGE) Activity.

Learn more about our previous work in Zambia here.