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Communications Services for “Better Than Cash Alliance (BTCA)
Procurement Process :Other
Deadline :30-Nov-12
Posted on :16-Nov-12
Development Area :OTHER
Reference Number :10223
Documents :
Overview :
Background information
UNCDF is the UN’s capital investment agency for the world’s 48 least developed countries.
It works to advance the Millennium Development Goals by increasing access to microfinance and basic services, in ways that are sustainable, and can be taken to scale by the private sector, development partners and national governments.
On the ground in over 40 of the world’s poorest countries, primarily in Africa and Asia, UNCDF provides technical support and seed capital – grants and loans – to strengthen institutions that create economic opportunity and provide essential services for poor people. UNCDF focuses on microfinance, supporting providers and policies that help more households and small businesses gain access, and on capital development at the local level, working to ensure that investments by local authorities – irrigation schemes, clinics, roads, water supply – are sustainable, and respond to the needs of the poor. UNCDF’s work in microfinance and local development enlarges peoples’ choices, and helps them respond to food insecurity, climate change and other challenges.
UNCDF works in challenging environments – remote rural areas, countries emerging from conflict – and paves the way for others to follow. Its programmes are designed to shape national policies and to catalyze larger-scale investments by the private sector, development partners and national governments, for significant impact on the Millennium Development Goals, especially Goal 1: Eradicate Extreme Poverty and Hunger, Goal 3: Promote Gender Equality and Empower Women, and Goal 7: Ensure Environmental Sustainability.
Established by the General Assembly in 1966 and with headquarters in New York, UNCDF is an autonomous UN organization affiliated with UNDP. 
About the “Better Than Cash Alliance”
Around the world, 2.6 billion people live on less than $2 per day and 90 percent lack access to formal financial services. Governments, the development community and the
private sector make billions of dollars in cash payments to the poor, including disbursements of salaries, payments to suppliers, pensions, social welfare stipends, cash-for-work programs, emergency relief payments and others. Shifting these payments to electronic has the potential to advance financial inclusion and help people build savings while giving governments, the development community and the private sector a more efficient, transparent and often safer means of disbursing payments.
The Better Than Cash Alliance (BTCA) is a global initiative founded by Citi Foundation/Citigroup, Ford Foundation, Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, Omidyar Network, USAID and Visa Inc. which aims to accelerate the shift from cash to electronic payments in order to advance financial inclusion, help people build savings and provide a more efficient, transparent and often safer means of disbursing payments. The UN Capital Development Fund (UNCDF) serves as secretariat for the BTCA.
The initiative provides programme partners with the expertise and resources they need to make the transition from cash to electronic payments and achieve the shared goals of empowering people and growing emerging economies. While physical cash payments are more effective than distributing in-kind goods, there is a grow­ing body of evidence that digitizing payments can create lasting benefits for people, communities and economies, such as cost savings, transparency, security, financial inclusion and, new market access.
Additionally, advances in communication technology and network capacities have led to innovative and target­ed ways of reaching even the most rural areas to use mobile devices, smart cards and other elec­tronic methods. While there are geographic regions and certain operations for which a transition is not yet possible, research suggests that billions in government funding, development assistance and private sector cash payments are potentially appropriate for the shift to electronic.
BTCA will advocate for and support the use of all forms of electronic pay­ments where they provide a superior payment option to cash, regardless of the particular technol­ogy or mode of transmission.
Objective and Tasks
Advocacy and Communication of the key messages of BTCA are essential to the achievements of the Alliance’s objectives. The deliverables of BTCA’s target main audiences: 1) UN system and members states; 2) government policymakers and development partners; and 3) private sector players including various financial service providers and technology companies. Communication will emphasize the widespread dissemination of BTCA’s key messages to the appropriate audiences.
The communication work of BTCA involves three different aspects, each requiring different skills and expertise.
1.       Identification of appropriate marketing opportunities of BTCA’s key messages at various existing events and platforms for the different audiences.
i.                     Knowledge of existing events and platforms and experience in getting the necessary agenda included in those events;
ii.                   Expertise in developing appropriate communication tools and messages appropriate for various platforms;
iii.                  Knowledge and experience of working with various media outlets.
iv.                 Ability to streamline and synthesize various opinions and information
v.                   Technical knowledge of the issues and target audiences
2.       Media placement of the key messages of BTCA.
i.                     Technical expertise in outreach to financial and general media, enabling specific messages to gain exposure;
ii.                   Ability to develop and adapt messages to specific format appropriate for various media outlets (i.e. TV interviews, articles, etc.);
iii.                  Emphasis on excellent writing skills.
3.       Set up / maintain a contact management system.
i.                     Technical expertise in effective contact management (Mailchimp is the preferred system)
Under the supervision of the BTCA Programme Manager and working very closely with the BTCA Communications Specialist, a Communication Firm will manage the communication strategy of BTCA during this period. Final directions on any Communications activity will be made by the BTCA Programme Manager in consultation with representatives of founding organizations who function as the Programme Management Committee (PMC) of the Better Than Cash Alliance.
The Communication Firm must have good knowledge of the key target audiences of BTCA, as well as understanding and experience in reaching out to each audience.
Communication within the UN system and member states can be facilitated by UNCDF in-house communication specialists who have experience working with the UN. The legal and political process necessary for advocacy within the UN can also be coordinated in collaboration with experts within the UN and UN missions of various member states.
1.       Identification of strategic marketing opportunities of BTCA’s key messages at various existing events and platforms for the different audiences and media placement of the key messages of BTCA. Possible events might include:
World Economic Forum in Davos, 23 – 17 January
IADB meeting in Panama in March 2013
IMF – World Bank Spring Meetings in Washington D.C. 19 – 21 April
Lima, Peru 23-25 April
Delivering Growth, Strengthening Societies
ADB meeting in India in May 2013
Cape Town, South Africa 8-10 May 2013
Delivering Africa’s Promise
AFDB meeting in Morocco in May 2013
2.       Media placement of the key messages of BTCA. (This might include identifying 30 sectoral and generalized media options to be contacted, preparation of 6 to 10 pitches for media outlets, news and feature stories to be published on the BTCA website and in partners’ publications (including blogs)).
3.       Set up / maintain a contact management system (preferably in Mailchimp) which might include the creation of various relevant forms (subscription, update, unsubscribe, etc.) and storage of BTCA stakeholders contacts with detailed information on their preferences. This might also include the creation of an electronic newsletter shell (connected to the contact management system.
Fees and modality of Payment
Payment will be made upon satisfactory completion of agreed deliverables.
§ University degree in marketing, communications or other related field;
§ 10 years media or PR experience;
§ Strong writing abilities in English;
§ Strong communications and public relations skills;
§ Strong management skills in organizing and coordinating promotional activities;
§ Wide knowledge of issues relating to building inclusive financial sectors;
§ Commitment to building pro-poor, sustainable inclusive financial sectors and microfinance institutions;
§ Experience in organizing and coordination of a wide variety of meetings, conferences, events and other activities in professional context;
§ Ability to work in a wide variety of cultural contexts.
Contract Type and Duration
Consultancy, according to UN standard templates/memorandum of agreement, 2 January 2013 / 30 April 2013 (4 months), full time.
Applications details to be submitted
§ Proposed methodology and workplan
§ Detailed profile of expertise and experience; CVs of the persons who will be engaged in this assignment
ü A specific price schedule with clear indication of different prices for each step listed under scope of services for each deliverables (amounts should be indicated in United States USD currency). Total costs should not exceed $100,000
ü Firm Hourly Rates Rates
Please note that this consultancy is open only to Firms. all the above Documentation should be forwarded, no later than 30 November 2012, should be forwarded, no later than 30 November 2012, to, with cc. to Ms. Ruth Goodwin-Groen,