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The impact of the COVID-19 virus on food producing Small and medium enterprises (SMEs) and farmer groups in Sub-Saharan Africa have been profound. Several reports show that these SMEs and farmer groups are greatly affected in a variety of ways, ranging from less availability of raw materials to a drop in consumer demand. Because of this, many face short-term liquidity problems, being unable to pre-finance the purchase of goods or repay outstanding loans. These financial challenges might mean the end of operations for many of these vulnerable SMEs, and consequently also the potential end of their involvement in the 2SCALE program.

In order to support its partners involved in agribusiness value chains to mobilize funds from their own networks in this difficult period, 2SCALE is launching its very first crowdfunding website. This crowdfunding platform, due to its originality in 2SCALE interventions, is an opportunity to raise or give impetus to the business of very small and medium-sized enterprises within the various partnerships.

Crowdfunding is a way to raise funds for your business by asking a large group of people to contribute small amounts of money in support. An online crowdfunding campaign is about mobilising your network, creating a community and gaining support for your venture. By involving your family, friends and other networks, you can create a snowball effect and successfully campaign to crowdfund for your venture. Henk van Duijn, The 2SCALE Program Director says :

As 2SCALE we feel that it is our responsibility to support the SMEs and producer organization we work with through the tough times brought about by Covid-19. With new instruments like the crowdfunding platform they get access to new ways of cash flow and are able to continue to produce and supply quality food products to local, national, and regional markets, including Base of the Pyramid consumers.

For this first campaign, around ten very small and medium-sized enterprises are selected in 3 countries of intervention of the program, namely Kenya, Mali and Nigeria. Each company will be coached and supported by local experts to activate its own network in order to mobilize €5,000. According to Baba Togola, 2SCALE Country Team Leader of Mali, this initiative represents a great opportunity for their local partners involved in the partnerships.

This is an opportunity to promote self-employment through support for very small businesses to acquire the means (working capital or acquisition of equipment) for the development of their business within 2SCALE partnerships

It should be remembered that this approach will especially allow companies to inform their contacts about the importance of their projects and get them to contribute to the realization of these projects.

To help our business partners to carry out their projects for sustainable and inclusive development, join us on the 2SCALE crowdfunding website to contribute.

Any company that will mobilize 50% of the targeted resources will benefit from a financial bonus of €2000 from 2SCALE.

Remember that anything that you can miss, is well spent.

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