Agribusiness Innov...

Agribusiness Innovation Centers

SUMMARY

The Agribusiness Innovation Program seeks to test a variety of models for providing pioneering agro-processing entrepreneurs with a holistic financial and nonfinancial service offering that enables innovation and facilitates access to markets, and thus accelerates the growth of the enterprises. The first generation of such models is referred to as Agribusiness Innovation Centers (AICs).

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BACKGROUND

The AICs will assist entrepreneurs to improve existing products and deepen market share in existing markets or enter new markets and develop new products for existing or new markets. AICs will play a pro-active role in identifying market opportunities and working with the entrepreneur to address critical marketing, production, and management issues, as well as to access relevant resources to accomplish growth, while safeguarding the environment. 

infoDev seeks to test a variety of approaches for such service provision, which will include variations in terms of:

AIC Service Portfolio

  • Market Linkages - Market information, marketing skills and market linkages backwards and forwards in the value chain.
  • Finance - Financial management skills and access to appropriate financing products.
  • Technology - Technology information, training and technology access.
  • Business Services - Business center, mentoring and coaching and assistance with navigating regulatory
    requirements, standards and compliance
  • Agribusiness entrepreneur networks, competitions and fairs.  
  • Narrow or broad sector focus (i.e. focus on a select few value chains only, a sub-sector, or all sectors);
  • Paths of sustainability for the AICs (that is, what is the right balance between success-sharing mechanisms, such as royalties, fees-for-service, and public subsidies?)
  • Relative investment in shared infrastructure, ranging from shared processing technologies to a pure knowledge and network driven service offering.

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