OUR VISION & MISSION
Aceli Africa envisions SMEs leading the transformation towards a thriving, inclusive, and sustainable agriculture sector.
Aceli's mission is to unlock the growth and impact of agricultural SMEs by bridging the gap between capital supply and demand.
Building the market for agricultural SME finance in Africa will contribute to several of the UN's Sustainable Development Goals through improved livelihoods for farmers and workers, climate-smart and resilient agriculture, gender inclusion, and food security and nutrition.
DATA & LEARNING
Year 2 Learning Report
Reflects on Aceli’s engagement with lenders in support of 713 loans totaling $85M to agri-SMEs across Kenya, Rwanda, Tanzania, and Uganda.
2023 Financial Benchmarking Report
Covers data gathered for an additional 13.2k loans totaling $749M issued by 31 lenders to agri-SMEs in East Africa during the period 2019-21.
Impact Profile: Cassava SME Cluster
Profiles a cluster of 9 agri-SMEs in Northwestern Tanzania that are accessing their first loans to purchase cassava from 1,980 smallholder farmers.
Gender Inclusive Lending for Agriculture in Africa
Highlights Aceli's approach to gender inclusion, learning from offering impact-linked financial incentives for lenders, partnerships to close the economic opportunity gap for women, and more.
The Effect of Central Bank Policies on Agri-SME Lending
Describes challenges posed by Central Bank policies and recommended solutions based upon a literature review, conversations with 70+ practitioners in East Africa, and experiences of the Aceli team.
2020 Financial Benchmarking Report
Synthesizes Aceli's journey of distilling the economics of agri-SME lending across a diverse set of lenders and designing solutions to bridge the $65B a year gap between capital supply and demand for agri-SMEs across sub-Saharan Africa.
THE ROLE OF AGRI-SMEs
Agricultural SMEs are vital actors in the agricultural sector, strengthening climate resilience and facilitating pathways out of poverty for both smallholder farmers and low-skill workers, particularly women and youth.
Agricultural SMEs need reliable access to finance to realize their growth and impact potential. However, Aceli’s original data confirms that risk in agri-SME lending is twice as high as other sectors while returns are 4-5% lower, limiting capital flows to agricultural SMEs today.
THE NEED FOR SMARTER FINANCING
Lenders have historically shied away from the high risks and low returns, creating a $65 billion annual financing gap for agricultural SMEs across sub-Saharan Africa. Traditional guarantee mechanisms are not sufficient to increase lender risk appetite and extend credit access to the majority of agricultural SMEs that are not currently being served.
Aceli Africa has been designed by lending practitioners based on their experience serving agricultural SMEs, and informed by data from 31 lenders and numerous stakeholders.