Mercy Corps is a leading global organization powered by the belief that a better world is possible. In disaster, in hardship, in more than 40 countries around the world, we partner to put bold solutions into action — helping people triumph over adversity and build stronger communities from within.
GIZ DAA Overview
Drawing on Mercy Corps’ experience implementing the AgriFin Mobile, AgriFin Accelerate and AgriFin Digital Farmer programs, GIZ has engaged Mercy Corps to understand how young technology innovators can be supported in scale and operational viability by engaging with emerging models of digital platforms. The GIZ smart development hack is a six-month, €1,300,000 initiative to work with cohort of partners in Kenya and Nigeria to develop digital solutions that address challenges in the agriculture sector especially brought about by the Covid 19 pandemic. The COVID-19 pandemic has drawn attention to the complex fragility of many countries, highlighted most clearly in the interplay of public health, markets and food systems. Early warning signs are emerging that the continent is on the brink of an unprecedented food security crisis. In Kenya it is estimated that there are sufficient strategic reserves for three months, but disrupted food systems, logistics and evidence of food hoarding may shorten that timeline, particularly as the largest desert locust invasion in 70 years. This project aims to promote zero contact and prevent the spread of COVID-19 by utilizing technology to expand access to food, improve distribution of agriculture outputs by consumers through support farmers utilize updated agriculture extension information to bolster production, cultivation, marketing and distribution of food in Kenya. Sprout, The Open Content Agriculture Platform, a project of Mercy Corps Agrifin (MCAF), is partnering with KALRO to provide a content marketplace/exchange for expert content developers to offer high quality digital-ready, farmer-friendly content that can be used free of charge by content distribution partners. The goal of Sprout is to enable MCAF partners to cost effectively, acquire and use this content is to build productivity, earned income and resilience of farmers at scale.
Purpose / Project Description:
Mercy Corps Agrifin (MCA) has been operating in Nigeria for over two years. Partners are at various stages of product development for Digital Financial Services (DFS) and Digital Information services (DIS) to smallholder farmers, with an on-the-ground person supporting the Agrifin team based in Nairobi, Kenya, in the engagement and follow-up of partners in-country
The consultant will be required to advance Nigeria based partnership relationships, while supporting the Nairobi based
technical team in successful implementation and evaluation of MCA engagements. The consultant will support the MCA team to design engagements, develop new/existing partnerships and facilitate product development initiatives that meet the strategic needs of our core partners.
Furthermore, the consultant will support with the Mercy Corps Agrifin Sprout Nigeria Platform expansion, by identifying potential content contributors, content users and Farmer Facing Organizations, participating in weekly Sprout Business Development meetings, onboarding new partners from Nigeria into the Sprout Platform, and updating and Sprout Business Development Pipeline.
The consultant will engage with the AgriFin team across the following key activities:
- Support strong partner relationships, project plans and product roadmaps.
- Support Nigeria Engagement Consultant with identifying and developing opportunities, partner business and work plans, reviewing research, marketing plans, business processes, operational manuals, product and technology specifications, and financial statements to do so.
- Support Nigeria Engagement Consultant with identifying project progress, with regular oversight of technical consultants or third-party providers, report and resolve, or assist in resolving issues, under direction of MCA management.
- Prepare project progress reports and status updates
- Support in conducting due diligence on prospective partners, compile required legal documents and share reports on the same.
- Keep up to date with the Nigerian agri/fintech ecosystems and participate ongoing learning meetings with program stakeholders related to program focus areas, working in coordination with technical team managers.
- Contribute to the Agrifin learning agenda and track partner impact metrics as and when required.
- Lead on the Sprout platform and identification of new AgriFin opportunities in Nigeria and partnerships, and other requests provided by the task manager
- Liaise with Nigeria farmer facing organizations utilize the content and resources from the Sprout Platform and integrate them into their respective platforms
The consultant will work to produce the following deliverables, in close collaboration with the AgriFin Digital Banking lead:
- Partner Prospecting and Project Development: Support the Nigeria Engagement Consultant with partner identification efforts and project development including participating in due diligence exercises, populating partner proposals and participation in pipeline update meetings. A monthly report accounting for activities done and activity time log.
- Project implementation and partner relationship management: Support the Nigeria Engagement Consultant with implementation of identified projects including kick off meetings, internal update meetings and regular updates with the partner and vendors to ensure project success. A monthly report accounting for activities outlined and activity time log.
- Project and program learning and reporting: Support the Nigeria Engagement Consultant with end of project and program reporting including documenting lessons learnt and achievements of projects under the advisory of the consultant, support program learning initiatives both internal and external where scheduled. A monthly report specifying support provided to project and program reporting and activity time log.
- Lead and support Nigeria-based engagement deliverables based on AgriFin existing proposals and deliverables contracted through those documents.
- Lead and support with Sprout Nigeria Platform expansion, by identifying potential content contributors, content users and Farming Facing Organizations, participating in weekly Sprout Business Development meetings, onboarding new partners from Nigeria into the Sprout Platform and updating and Sprout Business Development Pipeline.
The individual consultant must demonstrate significant experience and expertise in:
- 5-10 years of experience in a technically relevant field;
- Deep experience with implementation of AgriFin climate programming in learning, processes and partner engagements;
- Deep understanding of the Nigeria Agricultural ecosystem;
- Deep experience with resource development in agriculture
- Demonstrated ability to work in a mentor/advisor capacity across multidisciplinary and multicultural teams to build capacity around application of bundled digital services to promote improved livelihoods of smallholder farmers in Nigeria;
- Demonstrated ability to develop high quality written strategy, synthesis and recommendations on the related subjects;
- Minimum educational qualification is a master’s degree in a related subject.