AV Ventures is ACDI/VOCA’s for-profit subsidiary. AV Ventures provides innovative, catalytic financing to agribusiness small and medium enterprises SMEs in West Africa and Central Asia. Such investments provide better economic opportunities for communities and generate social impact through inclusive, responsible supply chains.
Achieving ACDI/VOCA’s mission requires facilitating access to finance for farmer groups, enterprises, and communities through sound business practices. Over the last decade, we have led a global shift among donors and practitioners to strengthen whole value chains in which the poor participate, including SMEs that offer markets for smallholder farmers.
Today, despite progress, a “missing middle” remains in financing. SMEs lack financing because they are too large for microfinance institutions but too small for most investors. These viable businesses would benefit from patient capital, or longer-term, more flexible financial products and technical assistance to invest, upgrade, and grow.
AV Ventures aims to close this gap by providing financing and technical assistance to agribusiness SMEs in select emerging markets where we work.
AV Ventures’ investment strategy is to invest patient capital in growing agribusinesses in developing countries to promote markets in which business owners, smallholder farmers, and communities are empowered to succeed. Our pilot funds in Ghana and Central Asia (Kazakhstan and Kyrgyzstan) focus on SMEs that show significant potential for growth and impact, particularly for small-scale farmers.
Progress along social and economic metrics are a substantial indicator of AV Ventures’ investments’ overall performance. Anticipated social and economic outcomes, such as increased sourcing from smallholder farmers, servicing smallholder farmers, environmental responsibility, and job creation, will inform investment decisions, be monitored, and reported post-investment alongside financial metrics through customized impact measurement frameworks.
Geoffrey Chalmers, Managing Director – GChalmers@av-ventures.com
Wyanie Bright, Senior Director – WBright@av-ventures.com
Heather LeMunyon Bateman, Associate Director – HLeMunyon@av-ventures.com