SEED during COVID-19: Our programmes reimagined for the virtual format

Published: 16 December 2020Authors: Amanda Panella, Linde Wolters
When COVID-19 hit, SEED and its supported enterprises were affected like the rest of the world. Our programmes - designed for peer-learning and networking - had to quickly adjust to this new global reality and move to a virtual environment. In an effort to both support affected enterprises and be able to keep our programmes running. Read more

More Than “Donor Darlings”: Ecosystem system support for green and eco-inclusive SMEs to deliver more than narratives

Published: 10 December 2020Authors: Ebenezer Kumi
From October—November 2020, SEED provided two 3-day eco-inclusive ToT workshops for representatives of SNV’s selected hubs, incubators and accelerators in Ashanti and Western Regions. Read more

Supporting MSMEs for Ghana’s transition to a Circular Economy: Solutions from SEED’s Policy Lab

Published: 09 December 2020Authors: Amanda Panella, Camilla Shearman
While eco-inclusive enterprises drive the transition to a circular economy, they often face significant constraints to build and scale their businesses. Mr. Boachie highlighted that eco-inclusive MSMEs often face specific challenges based on perceived higher-than-normal risks, and a unique need for longer-term financing. Read more

Best practices to follow for online workshops: Learnings from SEED virtual trainings during pandemic times

Published: 30 November 2020Authors: Amar Munnolimath, Elena Eckhardt, Nithin Ramu
Workshops are an important format for business development services (BDS) providers to deliver support services to eco-inclusive enterprises. However, since the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic and related measures, such as lockdowns and curfews, BDS providers have had to adjust and reconceptualise the workshop experience. Read more

P.ACT: Leveling the field for equitable partnerships

Authors: Saida Benhayoune Source: iBAN
While hybrid partnerships come with their challenges, enterprises and large organisations alike agree that partnerships are key to leveraging the innovation and agility of social enterprises in order to solve the world’s inequalities. P.ACT from SEED and MIT D-Lab levels the playing field for more equitable partnerships. Read more

SEED Hosts Sankalp Global Summit 2020 Workshop: A Green Recovery: Building Resilience for Eco-Inclusive MSMEs after COVID-19

Published: 05 November 2020
On 3 November 2020, SEED’s Head of Communications Linde Wolters moderated a workshop at the Sankalp Global Summit on A Green Recovery: Building Resilience for Eco-Inclusive MSMEs after COVID-19. Read more

SEED Participates in Asia-Europe ENVforum Webinar: Single-Use Plastic (Never)Ending Story

Published: 05 November 2020
On 28 October 2020, SEED’s Executive Director Lewis Akenji moderated a webinar regarding the role of businesses in tackling single-use plastics and general trends and challenges across Asia and Europe. Read more

NINJA COVID-19 Response and Recovery Business Challenge Winner: EcoPlastile Ltd

Published: 26 October 2020
EcoPlastile Ltd, an eco-inclusive enterprise working with youth and women to collect and process waste plastics into low-cost, durable timber substitutes, has been declared a winner for Next Innovation with Japan (NINJA) Business Innovation Challenge in response to COVID-19. Read more

SEED Participates in GGKP Webinar - Rebuilding Better: New materials and systems for resource efficient SMEs

Published: 08 October 2020
On 29 September 2020, SEED’s Executive Director Lewis Akenji joined a panel of experts to talk innovations in sustainable materials across sectors. In this webinar, hosted by GGKP, a platform for green practitioners, multiple SEED supported enterprises were showcased. Read more

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
Related SDGs:

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

An Entrepreneur’s Motivation to Move Forward

Published: 17 August 2020Authors: Khawla Rammali, Linde Wolters
Upon reflection, Kenya based Jackline Lang'at feels she may have given up too quickly. The 2016 Award winner was piloting the construction of eco-friendly, durable roads while working with women and youth, when elections hit, cashflow stalled and dedication wavered. Now four years on, Jackline is looking back on her failure but keen to launch a new venture. We caught up with her to learn from her experience, a timely discussion in the context of the COVID-19 crisis and its risk to the survival of many small businesses. 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

Status quo and future outlook: what does COVID-19 mean for BDS providers in India?

Published: 14 July 2020Authors: Amar Munnolimath, Dr. Malini Balakrishnan, Elena Eckhardt
To assess the status quo and future outlook of what COVID-19 means for BDS providers in India, SEED India Hub invited BDS providers to take part in a virtual co-creation session. During the co-creation session that took place on 28th May 2020, BDS providers identified several challenges that both enterprises and BDS providers face due to COVID-19 and prototyped novel solutions addressing persistent challenges. 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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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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Supporting eco-inclusive enterprises in their immediate response to COVID-19 impacts

Published: 25 June 2020Authors: Elena Eckhardt
SEED is supporting enterprise resilience in the context of COVID-19. Informed by a series of interviews with 30 SEED-supported enterprises conducted in early 2020, SEED launched a toolkit, workshop series for eco-inclusive enterprises, as well as a Training of Trainers for Business Development Services (BDS) providers across Africa and Asia to offer much-needed support.  Read more

Why SMEs are essential to Uganda’s post-pandemic economic recovery

Published: 18 June 2020Authors: Edirisa Sembatya, Lewis Akenji
The Covid-19 pandemic has jolted national governments the world over to provide emergency support to vulnerable parts of society and the economy. SEED has recently observed that many eco-inclusive MSMEs are pivoting their business models to stay relevant. However, challenges with working capital and the high cost of doing business show a need for a safety net or relief to MSMEs. Read more

Rebooting the economy during and after COVID-19 crisis by supporting eco-inclusive enterprises

Published: 28 May 2020Authors: Ebenezer Kumi, Jonas Restle-Steinert
In many emerging countries like Ghana, reducing the impact of COVID-19 and charting the path to a regenerative economy during and after the pandemic may not lie in big financial stimulus packages for all types of businesses in general. A targeted and tailored support for eco-inclusive SMEs that are more concerned about social and environmental issues is essential. Read more

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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BDS+ Special Focus Thailand: Three reasons to join a Training of Trainers in Thailand

Published: 22 May 2020Authors: Lina Gutierrez, Linde Wolters
SEED ToTs grants business development service (BDS) advisors access to SEED tools,network and hub, helping you connect with peers, government and corporate actors, and inviting you to help build the ecosystem in the country. Read more

BDS+ Special Focus Malawi: Three reasons to join a Training of Trainers in Malawi

Published: 22 May 2020Authors: Lina Gutierrez, Linde Wolters
SEED quality training contributes to the development of small and medium enterprises (SMEs) in Malawi. This helps increase local livelihoods in the green sector and tackles Malawi’s pressing issue of unemployment, especially among the youth population. Read more

Adapting to business-not-as-usual during COVID-19

Published: 18 May 2020Authors: Sonya Ong
Business was looking up for Fadzai Munyuki and her team at Kudiwa Waste & Energy Solutions earlier this year. Then operations had to stop suddenly following the orders of the Zimbabwean government, who like many others, initiated a 21 day restricted movement order as a response to the corona virus. Read more