Country of origin: Benin
Country of residence: Ghana
Description: Aurelia DAKPOGAN holds a Master in Agro-economy and is currently the Regional Access to Finance Specialist/West Africa on 2SCALE project in IFDC. With over 12 years experiences in agriculture financing, she has developed several mechanisms to reduce risk and facilitate access to credit for agribusiness clusters actors. She has also established partnership with many banks and MFIs in West Africa to remove restraints in value chain finance and develop innovative financials products. - Education: Master in Agro-Economy, Faculty of Agronomic Sciences at University of Abomey Calavi (FSA/UAC), Benin - Country Experience: Benin, Ghana, Nigeria, Togo, Mali, Burkina-Faso, - Language: French (Excellent), English (Excellent) - Employment Record: 2012-Ongoing: Access to Finance Specialist / West Africa, 2SCALE /IFDC-NWAFD 2009 -2013: Rural Finance Specialist / PINC project IFDC-NWAFD 2007-2010: Rural Development Engineer/ Ministry of Agriculture/ CARDER/ Benin 2004-2006: Technical assistance/ Export Development Association - Mains achievements during career Introduction the warrantage at farmer’s level to increase working capital financing to farmers by using their own stock of product as guarantee. In 2014, this mechanism enabled maize farmers in Borgou to store more than 1,000tons of maize, and obtain a loan of 55.7 millionFCFA ($111,000) to purchase farm inputs. The financial institution partners were FECECAM and Sian’son ONG. An experience on warrantage in Benin was documented and diffused on www.business.africa (Business Africa N°348 Week of 23rd September) Negotiation with financial institution to provide short-term financing for production or aggregation of produce to fulfill the contract, for businesses that have a formal contract with a buyer but lack working capital. The bank pays the supplier directly and later recovers the loan from the contracted buyer, under a tripartite agreement (cluster−buyer−bank). As example, such a negotiation enables Lapo Microfinance Bank to provide in 2014, a loan of 10million Naira ($60,000) to the Pampaïda chili producers’ group in Nigeria. This was based on a contract between the 100-member farmer group and AACE Foods for 20 tons of chili peppers. Development of a MoU with Oikocredit to support SMEs involved in food processing and to farmer associations to access equipment financing. This partnership cover Benin, Mali, Togo and Ghana. This financing is designed not for routine support (e.g. expansion) but to facilitate the introduction of a technology innovation that could be applied to enterprises. As example, in 2014, under this type of assistance Oikocredit approved a 400 million FCFA ($800,000) loan to Promo Fruit based in Benin, a juice processor that sources pineapples from producer groups in the Atlantique region of Benin. The first tranche enables Promo Fruit to establish a can production unit. The second fund the purchase of processing equipment. Introduction on a new, simplified method of crop insurance in Benin and Mali, in partnership with PlaNet Guarantee. Insurance pay-outs are based on an objective, measurable parameter. In this case, farmers are compensated when evapo-transpiration exceeds a threshold value, indicating that plants suffered severe water stress. The process is quick (because fewer field inspections are required), transparent, and minimizes disputes about how much compensation must be paid. More than 400 maize farmers purchased index-based crop insurance in 2013. In 2014, nearly 2,000 farmers were sensitized, mostly through radio programs; 554 farmers registered, 287 in Mali and 267 in Benin. Implementation of a training program on financial literacy among smallholder farmers in West Africa. The training covers budgeting, savings options, financial products and services and others areas. Project teams have also developed a training module that provides concrete guidelines for coaches and business support services as they work with farmer groups to improve saving, record keeping and financial prudence. As result of this learning cycle, fulani milk producers in Nigeria have opened bank accounts for the first time with the Bank of Agriculture and First Bank, and now receive electronic payments for milk supplied to dairy processor Friesland Campina. Initially reluctant, milk producers now enjoy quick, safe cash transfers and other services, e.g. credit for buying animal feed. Development of partnership with FECECAM and BRS in Benin to manage a Dutch Embassy Guarantee fund to finance SME and FBO supported by IFDC and unlock bank lending to smallholder farmer groups or small enterprises that do not meet standard lending criteria. This fund improve access to farm inputs, processing equipment and working capital, with other than 600 000 $ of loans disbursed. Assistance to a number of lead firms and local business champions to identify funding opportunities, and prepare and submit business plans to some investment funds. This support enables them to grow to a level where they can access conventional financial markets. For example many lead firm in Ghana and Benin were linked to the Inclusive Business Fund, set up by the Rabobank Foundation, ICCO Investments and BoPInc. This fund provides financing (medium-term loans ranging from €100,000 to €1 million), financial consulting and links to business networks  Short term assignments (selected assignements) - May 2013 Kenya : Co Facilitator, ICRA IFDC and BoP innovation, Workshop on business inclusive and market innovation in Africa, - February 2013 Ghana : Co Facilitator, NeverIdle Farms Consulting, Workshop and training visit on mobile storage facilities in north Ghana, - December 2012 Nigeria : Trainer, ICRA and IFDC, Diagnostic and design workshop on business ideas and linkages to market in soya bean and rice value chain  Skills - MS office (proficient), MS Small Business Server (intermediate), HTML (basic) Adobe creative Suite (intermediate) - Facilitation and Training Skills (Adult Learning) - Team Player and Leadership Skills - Ability to travel or relocate with short notice - Excellent Report Writing Skills  Professional references - Mathias Ahounou. Cluster Advisor 2SCALE project, IFDC-Benin Tel : + 229 97 50 33 15, +229 95 03 20 07 Email : mahounou@ifdc.org - Omichessan Christiane. Director of Banks and Financial Institutions Ex Minister of Public Works and Transport Tel (229) 21 33 35 32 (229) 90-01-28-16
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Aurélia  DAKPOGAN GBAGUIDI


 



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