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Friday, March 7, 2014

CID Speaker Series: Smallholder Finance: The Next Frontier of Financial Inclusion

Feeding the world’s growing global population, estimated to reach 8-11 billion by 2050, is one of the fundamental challenges and opportunities of our time. The world’s 450 million smallholder farmers form a central part of the solution for growing and sustaining our food production to meet consumer demand. Root Capital works with small and growing businesses (SGBs) that aggregate products from hundreds, often thousands, of farmers in developing countries. These agricultural SGBs connect farmers to markets, pay higher and more stable prices, and enable entire communities to prosper. Yet despite their enormous potential to drive job creation and economic growth, these rural SGBs are trapped in the “missing middle” between microfinance and commercial banks: a potential $450 billion market. Rural businesses that require loans ranging from $25,000 to $2 million are too large to access credit from microfinance institutions but considered too small, too risky, and often too remote to secure financing from commercial banks. Moreover, these SGBs typically lack the financial management capacity needed to access loans and benefit from and contribute to agricultural value chains that connect farmers to markets. Root Capital works to confront global poverty by building a scalable model to deliver credit to agricultural businesses that grow long-term rural prosperity for small-scale farmers across Africa and Latin America. By providing credit, delivering financial training, and strengthening market linkages for these businesses, we improve rural livelihoods and promote environmentally sustainable agricultural practices.

  • Location:
    Perkins Room (R-415), 4th Floor Rubenstein, HKS
  • Date:
    Friday, March 7, 2014
  • Time:
    11:45 AM

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John F. Kennedy School of Government 79 John F. Kennedy Street
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