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UNCDF Roster of Consultants with skills in the focus sectors of Food Security & Nutrition / SME Finance / Blue Economy Finance / Green Economy, Climate Finance & Renewable Energy/ Financial Inclusion and Innovation / Local Infrastructure finance
Procurement Process :IC - Individual contractor
Deadline :10-Dec-21
Posted on :01-Nov-21
Development Area :OTHER  OTHER
Reference Number :85151
Link to Atlas Project :
Non-UNDP Project
Overview :

Founded by a General Assembly resolution in 1966, the UN Capital Development Fund (UNCDF) makes public and private finance work for the poor in the world’s 46 least developed countries. With its capital mandate and instruments, UNCDF offers financial solutions that try to mobilize public and private resources, both internationally and domestically, to reduce poverty and support local economic development.

UNCDF’s expertise is in three primary areas of work: (1) development and financing of inclusive digital economies through a market development approach, largely driven by digital finance and innovation; (2) local development finance through fiscal decentralization (including local climate adaptation finance), municipal finance and structured project finance, to drive market transformation in local economic development; and (3) investment finance, to drive capital accumulation and market transformation in financially underserved areas, including investment sourcing, due diligence, de-risking, deployment of loans and guarantees, and crowding in of investment capital from domestic and international investors. Women’s and youth’s economic empowerment is specifically articulated across all UNCDF work in terms of objectives, approaches, theory of change, targets, and indicators.

UNCDF uses a combination of grant, reimbursable grant, loans, guarantees and technical assistance to support early-stage businesses, SMEs, projects, microfinance institutions and municipal investments. Up till today UNCDF’s use of loans and guarantees has been growing and there is now an even higher ambition to make better and wider use of these financial instruments. UNCDF has also seen a strong increase in demand for its loan and guarantee services from other UN agencies, not least UNDP. In response to the need to deploy different kind of risk tolerant capital, a blended finance impact fund was launched by Bamboo Capital Partners, the BUILD Fund, as the result of a joint initiative between UNCDF and this private asset manager. The BUILD Fund will be complemented by the sidecar BUILD Enterprise Resource Technical Assistance Facility (the “BUILDER TA Facility” or “BUILDER TAF” or “BUILDER”). Together, BUILD and BUILDER will constitute the first investment initiative to integrate the lessons learned from UNCDF’s past experiences to create a new, innovative approach for investments into SMEs in LDCs.

2. Context

UNCDF accomplishes its catalytic investment activities through the LDC Investment Platform (LDC IP). The LDC IP provides the technical know-how to expand the deployment of capital instruments to a growing pipeline of companies and projects in the “last mile” in LDCs. The platform has a team of investment professionals with significant transactional expertise in LDCs and impact investing backgrounds. The LDC Investment Platform (LDCIP) team supports UNCDF’s two operational divisions (Inclusive Digital Economies and Local Development Finance) as well as agencies from the wider UN system on issues related to investment finance and innovative SDG financing.

Overall, the aim of the LDC IP is to support an ecosystem that (a) demonstrates to domestic and international investors that LDC markets can and do generate returns, provide opportunities for successful investment, and merit the attention of a wider range of investors; (b) uses those demonstration effects to support policy and regulatory improvements and scale up of what works by other actors; and (c) helps a number of companies advance to the next level of growth where more commercial funding will replace the concessional funding.

Early-stage SMEs, financial service providers and projects in the LDCs often lack access to sound systems, procedures, resources (including human capital) and best practices (not to mention funding) that would allow them to graduate to improved operations, governance and therefore increased levels of sustainability and impact. Technical assistance support will enable these prospects or investees to positively and substantially transform their operations and human capital over time and reach sustainable growth and impact in the communities that they serve.

LDCIP is looking to build a cohesive and well-knit team of TA Consultants, with prior substantive work-experience and strong technical expertise in providing TA to business entities involved in the following target sectors: 

• Food Security & Nutrition (SDG 1 and SDG 2): this area focuses on investments into the agricultural sector. It targets small and medium scale agricultural farms as well as agricultural businesses along entire agricultural value chains that will be financed directly or indirectly. Prospective investees include eco-friendly cooperatives, commercial farms, aggregators, agribusiness software providers, processing companies or other eco-friendly focused businesses which on-lend to the agricultural sector, to fund for instance smallholders.

• Green Economy, climate finance & Renewable Energy (SDG 1 and SDG 7): this area focuses on investments to mitigate the effects of climate change and to drive clean energy access to “last-mile” communities. Prospective investees include solar and hydro off-grid or mini-grid renewable energy investments, as well as industrial scale renewable energy and selected on-grid installations.

• Blue Economy (SDG 14): this area focuses on investments in sustainable solutions within fisheries, tourism/eco-tourism, agriculture, aquaculture and coral farming, infrastructure, waste and pollution management, ocean and coastal ecosystem restoration and protection, etc. 

• Financial Inclusion and Innovation (SDG 1 and SDG 9): this area focuses on investments that ensure that a range of financial products are available to all segments of society, at a reasonable cost, and on a sustainable basis. Prospective investees include financial services providers and fintechs, such as payment aggregators, money transfer companies offering a variety financial products and services through digital delivery channels (such as mobile phone networks)

• Local Infrastructure (SDG 1 and SDG 11): Focuses on investments for the financing of catalytic infrastructure (including, but not limited to, transport, communications, marketplaces) with high local economic development impact.

For more information on the consultancy and application process please visit link here: