Malawi Agricultural Catalytic Fund Scoping

More than 85% of Malawians work in agriculture yetmost farmers are trapped at the subsistence level and vulnerable to drought. Investing in agriculture is one of the most effective ways to reduce poverty and create jobs. In Malawi, investing in irrigation to boost yields and extend the growing season is especially urgent.


More needs to be done to stimulate investment in a modern, profitable agricultural sector in Malawi, and neither the public nor private sector can manage this alone. AgDevCo had deployed public capital in other sub-Saharan countries to ‘de-risk’ early stage agriculture investments and encourage entry by the private sector. It wanted to understand the potential for replicating this modelin Malawi,proposing a social venture capital (debt and equity) fund (the Malawi Catalytic Fund).

We supported AgDevCo to identify a potential pipeline of investments for such a fund. This included identifying constraints on developing a profitable agriculture sector, potential buyers of agricultural commodities from Malawian producers, and potential investors for projects; and developing a financial model for a £10 million fund, and a monitoring and evaluation methodology.  We also supported AgDevCo in modelling the impact potential of this fund and then co-presented it to DFID and the AgDevCo board.

Following our consultancy, AgDevCo was successful in raising the fund.

Team members

Jim Henderson

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