First Investments in the 2nd Cohort

By Till Wahnbaeck
August 19, 2022

Marbi Agric, with their credit-financed seeds for smallholder farmers, is a great example of how our support works. I mentioned in one of the last newsletters that we were supporting the start-up with a loan of 50,000 euros, which we will convert into an equity investment in the fall. Already in April, Marbi was able to use the money and expand their activities in western Kenya. The result: 67 direct jobs (for permanent sales staff) and 159 indirect jobs (for savings group coordinators) in April alone, and 60 new ones have been added since then. We measure our return not in euros, but in jobs. I can hardly imagine a better return than that of our investment in Marbi Agric.

And so it shall continue: In early August, we reached an agreement with Gjenge Makers and will invest a good 90,000 euros in the company. The tool is a convertible bond (that is, the money is flowing now and will be converted into an investment at the next capital increase); we have already transferred the first tranche of 30,000 euros so that founder Nzambi Matee can use it to expand her production and enter the lucrative market of bricks – at the moment she only produces paving stones. I’m curious to see how many new jobs she can create with this.

And last but not least, we have reserved 50,000 euros to support Africa Collect Textile (ACT). The textile upcycling company, which produces backpacks and bags from old uniforms, for example, urgently needs a shredder so that it can enter the business of filling materials. Not as nice and not as attractive as their backpacks, but the best way to recycle tons and tons of textile waste and displace filler material made of plastic… and create jobs.



The recycled backpack from ACT prevents the burning of textiles

About Till Wahnbaeck

Till Wahnbaeck
Ex-CEO of Welthungerhilfe and private sector General Manager, champion of innovation. Till ran both for profit companies and a global NGO and has always strived to bridge the gap between the social and the private sector. As global CEO of Welthungerhilfe (a German food- and nutrition-security NGO with 2,500 staff in 40 countries and a budget of 250mio$), he championed innovation and impact. Previously, as Marketing, Sales and Innovation Director for consumer goods company, Procter & Gamble, he built innovation methods and processes to rejuvenate P&G’s global salon portfolio.

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