Building a Resilient Business Around Women: The story of Dagoretti

Published: 28 September 2020Authors: Amanda Panella, Linde Wolters
Violet Matiru grew up without electricity on a farm at the outskirts of Nairobi, Kenya, an aspect of her life that led her to want to better the environment around her. From using kerosene lamps and lighting a fire every day with firewood for a cup of tea before school, she decided to support herself and her community by launching the Dagoretti Market Biogas Latrine. It has since moved from a core business of converting human waste from paid for latrines for market goers, to biogas to be reused for cooking and heating water, to other environmentally and socially relevant activities.  Read more
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Enterprise Resilience: Six Critical Factors to Protecting Your Start-Up’s Future

Published: 24 September 2020
To better understand what resilience means for MSMEs during the COVID-19 pandemic, SEED interviewed 30 eco-inclusive enterprises. Unsurprisingly, MSMEs have been strongly affected by the economic shock of the pandemic. From these interviews, SEED has outlined the six critical factors for protecting the future of your enterprise. Read more

Making SME support programmes green, fair and recovery proof

Published: 10 September 2020
SMEs make up a significant portion of ASEAN economies and communities. Despite being impacted negatively by the pandemic, they are also key in driving local green and inclusive growth. The new Green Recovery Ecosystem Builder Programme is tailored for participants who lead programmes or departments and are responsible for the successful implementation of enterprise support services. Read more

Eco-Inclusive Enterprises: Accelerating Southern Africa’s Green and Inclusive Economies

Published: 02 September 2020
Micro, Small, and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs) provide 50% of jobs, contribute to over 35% of the GDP in emerging economies, and overall make up 90% of registered firms across the world. They are especially impactful in emerging economies as they work toward inclusive growth and equality for marginalised populations. At SEED, we focus on growing eco-inclusive enterprises which in turn contribute socially, economically, and environmentally to empowering the 5.2 billion people at the bottom of the pyramid worldwide.

This report examines the yearly impact of 80 of our eco-inclusive enterprises in three of our SEED countries: Zambia, Zimbabwe, and Malawi. These locally embedded enterprises, 51% of which are women-led, demonstrate that driving the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) can indeed be profitable and with a success rate of 82.5% still in business, they show long-lasting impact in each of their communities and sectors. Read more
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Leveraging the contributions of MSMEs to green growth and the circular economy in Ghana | Policy Landscape Paper

Published: 01 September 2020Authors: Camilla Shearman, Doris Awortwi-Tandoh, Julia Haack, Kodjo Barnor, Letitia Varney, Linde Wolters, Thomas Wiredu
The policy context as it relates to MSMEs in Ghana is in a state of transformation. With a new MSME Policy on the horizon that seeks to align and coordinate efforts to support this stakeholder group, it is an opportune moment to look at the social and environmental contributions of MSMEs to Ghana’s development priorities, and how policy solutions can leverage these contributions. Furthermore, as MSME activities in specific sectors – for example in the waste management sector – receive increasing attention, there is opportunity for a coordinated effort to address challenges.

By bringing together different perspectives and experiences, the SEED Practitioner Labs for Policy Prototyping provides an opportunity to build partnerships and holistic solutions. Read more
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Recovering better: Global opportunities to jumpstart the real economy

Published: 31 July 2020
While the coronavirus pandemic presents enormous health and economic challenges, there are also opportunities to jumpstart economies and rebuild societies through green recovery plans that are aligned with the 2030 Agenda. This was the main takeaway of a dialogue that took place at Recovering better: Global opportunities for jumpstarting the real economy #GO4SDGs, a side event at the 2020 High-level Political Forum on Sustainable Development (HLPF 2020). Read more

Eco-Inclusive Enterprises: Forerunners in Advancing the SDGs | SEED SDG Impact Snapshot

Published: 15 July 2020Authors: Linde Wolters, Mirko Zürker, Net Pornlumon Nirachatsuwan
As governments respond to the wide-ranging problems resulting from the COVID-19 crisis, it’s worth thinking about how we may take this opportunity to shift towards a green economy. Because the way we recover from this crisis will impact our fight against climate change and our progress towards achieving the 2030 Sustainable Development Agenda.

A green recovery calls for investments in solutions that provide social, environmental and economic benefits to people, especially those in vulnerable and marginalised communities. SEED-supported eco-inclusive enterprises and other Micro, Small and Medium-sized Enterprises (MSMEs) already promote green-technologies while including low-income people in their value chain.

The SEED Impact Snapshot helps to reveal the versatility of the impact of eco-inclusive enterprises. It also helps to clarify where there is the biggest potential for their SDG contributions and how policymakers may help unlock that potential further. Read more
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SMEs for an African Green Economy

Published: 14 July 2020
On July 1st, Lewis Akenji, Executive Director of SEED, participated in a webinar that showcased the work that SEED and other organisations are currently doing to build a green, fair future for Africa. The webinar was part of the African Forum on Green Economy series of webinars that ran from April to July 2020. Read more
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Health And Hygiene: Improving Access To Climate-Smart WASH Products: Replicator Workbook

Published: 07 July 2020
Water is one of the main channels through which people, ecosystems and economies will feel climate change impacts. Missing access to Water, Sanitation and Hygiene (WASH) still poses challenges to people worldwide, while unsustainable products and services can have a big negative impact on both human and environmental health. Access to climate-smart WASH products & services leads to healthier lifestyles on personal and community levels while equally promoting environmental action. With eco-friendly yet innovative products, you can decrease vulnerabilities or tap into a growing market of environmentally-conscious customers. Exploit this potential and set up your own eco-inclusive enterprise providing access to climate-smart WASH products & services. Learn from proven business models around the globe and take the first steps towards offering sustainable solutions to your community. Read more
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Scaling Policy and Financial Instruments for Eco-Inclusive SME Support | SEED South Africa Symposium 2020

Published: 06 July 2020Authors: Camilla Shearman, Maggie Sloan
On 6th May, Mr Tlou Ramaru, Chief Director of Climate Change Adaptation in the Department of Environment, Forestry and Fisheries (DEFF), welcomed enterprises, financial institutions, policy-makers, donors, and business development service providers to a Pitching Session during the online SEED South Africa Symposium 2020. This Pitching Session brought together stakeholders who have been actively designing policy and financial instruments to support the start-up and scale-up of climate-smart and socially inclusive enterprises in South Africa. Read more
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Wildchain: A Non-profit Conservation Innovation Lab | Climate Finance, Thailand 2018

Published: 02 July 2020Authors: Kathrin Kirsch, Marlena Kiefl
Wildchain brings people together to protect our planet’s endangered species and ecosystem by creating shared value between social entertainment and real-world impact. Wildchain lets people digitally adopt and raise some of earth’s rarest species within a digital sanctuary they can call home. Users are passively contributing to conservation and reforestation projects solely by participating in this entertainment ecosystem. Users may also actively allocate where their donations go on a fully transparent kickstarter-like platform which will represent the impact they have created. Read more
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Enterprise Financing Journey: Khainza Energy

Published: 18 June 2020
Khainza Energy (SEED Low Carbon Award Winner 2018) is committed to transform organic waste into clean, safe, and affordable cooking fuel and to provide this renewable energy solutions to Ugandans. It is an innovative circular economy business that obtains organic waste from smallholder farms and local households for processing and refinement into high-purity methane. Read more
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Enterprise Financing Journey: Village Energy

Published: 18 June 2020
Village Energy (SEED Africa Award Winner 2015) provides lasting solar solutions to institutions and households, through providing customised systems and specialised after sales servicing and repair in Kampala, Uganda. Village Energy recruits and trains technicians to build a regional servicing, distribution and supply chain network.
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Filling the Missing Middle Financing Gap | Scoping Paper, India 2020

Published: 16 June 2020Authors: Kathrin Kirsch, Marlena Kiefl
This scoping paper provides the basis for the implementation of the collaborative, multi-step process of the SEED Practitioner Labs Climate Finance in India in 2020. India’s vibrant landscape of MSMEs presents an opportunity for diversified socio-economic growth. In light of climate change, climate-smart enterprises – offering products and services for climate change adaptation and/or mitigation – are well-positioned to absorb global climate finance flows to create environmental, social and economic impacts in line with India’s climate action objectives. However, climate-smart MSMEs cannot fulfill their full potential as they lack appropriate access to finance to grow and scale their operations resulting in a missing-middle-financing gap. Read more
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Digital Innovations: Data-Driven Eco-inclusive Enterprises

Published: 25 May 2020Authors: Khawla Rammali, Sonya Ong
The use of and access to data allows enterprises to make better and faster decisions. Data can help reveal patterns and trends in human behaviour of relevance inside and outside the sectors enterprises operate in. Read about why ListenField embraces digital innovation and how it has helped them scale-up their impact. Read more
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Filling the Missing Middle Financing Gap | Scoping Paper, Indonesia 2020

Published: 08 May 2020Authors: Maggie Sloan, Net Pornlumon Nirachatsuwan
This scoping paper provides the basis for the implementation of the collaborative, multi-step process of the SEED Practitioner Labs Climate Finance in Indonesia in 2020. Indonesia’s richness in biodiversity and vibrant landscape of small- and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) present a significant opportunity for the country to meet its development objectives while reducing its climate impacts and improving climate resilience across sectors. In particular, climate-smart SMEs – offering products and services for climate change adaptation and/or mitigation – are well positioned to absorb and scale the environmental, social and economic impacts of global climate finance flows in line with Indonesia’s climate action objectives. Read more
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How to Make the Most of the Lockdown Period for Your Enterprise?

Published: 21 April 2020Authors: Kathrin Kirsch
The current global lockdown, finds many of us working from home, limiting interactions with team members, customers and partners and reducing new business opportunities. Henry Othieno, CEO of Tusafishe, shares some inspiring strategies on how Tusafishe is nonetheless making the most of the situation, and may just come out stronger from the lockdown. Read more
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An Inspiring Perspective on COVID-19 From Fang Thai’s CEO

Published: 15 April 2020Authors: Supapim Wannopas
January 13 marked the first reported coronavirus case outside of China – it was reported in Thailand. A little more than 2 weeks later – on January 30, WHO declared COVID-19 a global public health emergency. This emergency doesn’t only pose a threat to individual health but, inevitably, also affects our healthy enterprises.

SEED had a chance to catch up with our 2019 SEED Awards winner from Thailand, Fang Thai Factory, on how they are doing and dealing with the epidemic. There are some key points we feel could benefit and/or inspire peers who face a similar struggle. Read more

Fang Thai’s 5 Fundamental Factors to Help You Deal With Change

Published: 15 April 2020Authors: Supapim Wannopas
Resilience is important to business, especially for those that are small in size or just starting out. Why? Because a small starter enterprise usually has built up fewer resources and network to withstand financial or other hardship for a long period of time. Yet, its strength is also in its size: its flexibility. This elasticity allows for a quick response, a shift in tactics and making changes easily. Here Jaruwan shares the five fundamental factors that allow her business to endure and adapt. Read more

Digital Innovations by Eco-Inclusive Enterprises: In the Waste Sector

Published: 08 April 2020Authors: Khawla Rammali, Sonya Ong
The improvement of waste management systems across the world is vital to reduce environmental degradation, but only 9% of the world’s plastic waste was recycled by 2015. But digital solutions can support changes in consumer behaviour and increase the education of residents on proper waste sorting techniques and the availability of door-to-door collection. Read more
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Digital Innovation for Eco-Inclusive Enterprises

Published: 30 March 2020Authors: Khawla Rammali, Linde Wolters, Sonya Ong
Digital innovation is a great way to accelerate social, environmental and economic transformation, for enterprises to tackle challenges such as climate change, food security, gender equality, and scale-up solutions more quickly through technology. Read more
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Digital Innovations by Eco-Inclusive Enterprises: In the Agriculture Sector

Published: 30 March 2020Authors: Khawla Rammali, Sonya Ong
Digital innovations can bring significant benefits to stakeholders in the agriculture sector. Take rural farmers who face challenges including a lack of access to information on markets, need advice on productivity gains, and struggle with obtaining credit and low levels of financial inclusion. Read more
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Seed Award Winner Gorilla Conservation Wins the St Andrews Prize for the Environment 2020

Authors: Source: THE ST ANDREWS PRIZE
Celebrating its 22nd award in 2020, the Prize is an environmental initiative by the University of St Andrews in Scotland. The award recognises significant contributions to environmental issues and concerns with a focus on sustainability, conservation, biodiversity and community development. Read more
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SEED Award Winner Fang Thai Factory Featured on International Climate Initiative (IKI)

Authors: Source: International Climate Initiative (IKI)
SEED Low Carbon Award Winner 2019 Fang Thai Factory featured as a creative solution to address the environmental issues caused by Thailand's packaging industry in terms of deforestation, carbon dioxide emissions and waste management by International Climate Initiative. Read more
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Bottom-up Solutions to the Climate Emergency: Three Innovative, Eco-Inclusive Enterprises Take a Local Approach

Authors: Linde Wolters / Marlena Kiefl / Khawla Rammali Source: Next Billion
The threat of climate change exacerbates already existing inequalities, and increases the urgency of the need for resilient communities. But building this resilience presents a complex challenge: How can the world’s most marginalized communities effectively pursue growth, work toward the Sustainable Development Goals and overcome climate-related crises – while involving the rural households, women and youth who are most affected by climate change? Read more
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