TERMS OF REFERENCE
GENDER AND ACCESS TO FINANCE CONSULTANT
The AECF (Africa Enterprise Challenge Fund) is a nonprofit institution supporting early and growth-stage businesses – through the provision of patient capital – to innovate, create jobs, leverage investments and markets in an effort to create resilience and sustainable incomes for rural poor and marginalised communities in Africa.
AECF’s strategy is focused on agribusiness/agriculture and renewable energy sectors with increased support to climate technologies deepened focus on gender, youth, and employment, aimed at attaining the institution’s vision of ‘A Prosperous and Enterprising Rural Africa’.
Since 2008, AECF has invested in 268 businesses across sub-Sahara Africa focusing on Agribusiness, Renewable Energy and Climate Technologies. As of 2018, we have impacted more than 17 million lives and created over 12,000 jobs and leveraged over US$ 750 million in matching funds from the private sector.
AECF is headquartered in Kenya with offices in Cote d’ Ivoire and Tanzania.
2.0The Renewable Energy & Adaption to Climate ChangePortfolio
The Renewable Energy and Adaptation to Climate Technologies (REACT) portfolio supports the private sector in bringing renewable energy technologies to Africa’s rural communities. Limited access to sources of energy continues to undermine the productivity of households and businesses, limits growth and the burning of fossil fuels generates high emissions and reduces living standards. Climate change has the potential to reduce agricultural yields, increase water scarcity and the frequency of extreme weather. REACT has shown that private sector innovation has the potential to reach people in ways that large-scale government investment in grid extension and climate adaptation infrastructure struggle to deliver.
3.0REACT Household Solar Round 1 (HS R1) Programme**
REACT HS1 Programme seeks to address a critical component of the United Kingdom’s Department for International Development’s (DFID) Africa Clean Energy (ACE) Programme. It aims to increase access to clean, affordable energy for low-income people in Africa by promoting a market-based approach for private-sector delivery of solar home system products and services in the target countries in sub-Saharan Africa. The solar home systems are stand-alone photovoltaic systems that offer a cost-effective mode of supplying clean renewable energy for lighting, appliances and cooking, to remote off-grid households for better wellbeing and livelihood opportunities for rural poor people. The programme is currently being implemented in Malawi, Sierra Leone, Zambia and Zimbabwe.
4.0Purpose and deliverables of the Assignment
In Sub-Saharan Africa, 57% of the total population (and over four-fifths of the rural population) do not have access to electricity, while 62% of adults do not have a financial account of any kind. Driving financial inclusion and expanding energy access have traditionally been considered separate development objectives. However, revolutions in the distribution and financing of off-grid solar are changing the narrative. Several unique companies, in the off-grid sector, have developed the sales, service, and distribution models necessary to reach lower-income customers not only with pay-as-you-go (PAYGo) solar energy but also with financial services. These companies are electrifying the African countryside via the sale of financed solar home systems proving that distributed energy solutions that leverage digital payments open up opportunities to reach millions of people at low cost. Emerging evidence has revealed the role that business models enabled by digital finance, such as pay-as-you-go (PAYGo) solar, can play in expanding access to electricity for low-income populations while advancing financial inclusion. These businesses have had significant early success in providing poor people with access to technologies relevant to the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) (e.g., for electricity access, water and sanitation, and agricultural irrigation) whilst advancing financial inclusion.
REACT HS R1 seeks to catalyze the private sector to increase the supply of solar home systems to the rural markets at affordable costs – facilitated through innovative financing, operating and distribution models e.g. PAYGO, micro financed etc. As part of the knowledge and learning agenda of the REACT HS R1, the programme is seeking to generate knowledge and insights on how some of the funded companies are increasing access to affordable solar home systems to women whilst advancing financial inclusion. REACT HS R1 is, therefore, commissioning a study on two of its funded financial services off-grid companies, namely FINCOOP Savings and Credit Cooperative in Malawi and MoneyMart Finance in Zimbabwe, that will provide a detailed assessment of the impact of innovative financing solutions on gender and access to finance. The expected result is a study that will generate knowledge and insights on the impact of different financing business models on access to affordable solar home systems and women’s financial inclusion in Malawi and Zimbabwe. This will contribute to the body of knowledge on the impact of innovative financing solutions on access to finance and gender. The study should factor any key elements around disruptions, opportunities etc that Covid-19 presents to the industry, with a focus on women, and these two companies.
5.0Scope of Work
The Scope of Work is organized into three tasks.
Task 1: Conduct a gender and access to finance analysis of the solar industry in Malawi and Zimbabwe, with a specific focus on women.
The Consultant(s) will prepare a situational analysis of the solar home systems market as it relates to gender and access to finance. The analysis should highlight the most relevant issues and lessons for solar home systems companies to create transformative impact on gender through financial inclusion. It is expected that the analysis will include:
· Provide a detailed analysis of the situation in the target markets regarding gender and access to finance with a specific focus on solar home systems. The consultant will study the synergies in the distribution of energy and financial services. It should focus on how an integrated approach could profitably serve low-income populations and drive women’s financial inclusion.
· Gender implications of current energy and financial inclusion situation in the target markets, energy supply options and impact on women of limitation in accessing finance and energy.
Task 2– Conduct an Assessment of FINCOOP Savings and Credit Cooperative in Malawi and MoneyMart Finance in Zimbabwe as it pertains to gender and access to finance.
The Consultant will conduct an assessment of FINCOOP Savings and Credit Cooperative and MoneyMart Finance business models as it pertains to gender and access to finance, to identify how the business model is increasing access to energy and finance for women. This will include:
· Detailed background and analysis of each company’s business model, including any innovative approaches towards sales, service, and distribution necessary to reach women not only with pay-as-you-go (PAYGo) solar energy but also with financial services.
· A detailed analysis of whether the existing and innovative approaches have yielded an increase in access to energy and finance by women in Malawi and Zimbabwe.
· Challenges and opportunities faced by the two investees in drawing up integrated energy and financial services solutions that reach women.
· As part of the assessment, the Consultant is expected to consider interviewing representatives of relevant stakeholders such as the private sector, civil societies, women’s rights organisations within the respective countries.
Task 3 – Develop recommendations on how an integrated approach could enable financial institutions to profitably serve women.
The consultant will analyse and recommend options on how solar technology and innovative financing schemes can accelerate access to energy and finance for women in Africa. These recommendations should be based on learnings from other regions, e.g. South America, Asia and Africa. The consultant will present examples of business models taken from solar home systems value chains that have successfully driven access to energy and finance for women.
The study should also provide a focus and analysis on the impact of the Covid-19 as part of its evaluation of the selected companies under the REACT HS R1 Programme. All activities will need to adhere to respective government Covid-19 restrictions on movement and social distancing, and prioritise health and safety of consultants and participants. Consultants will, therefore, need to outline how they will deliver this engagement safely through desk-based research and virtual meetings/ interviews should restrictions still be in place at the time of contracting.
The consultant/firm will provide the following:
a) Inception meeting to review AECF inputs, and discuss timelines and deliverables.
b) An Inception report, within one week of contract signature, that will include:
· A revised work plan for carrying out the assignment;
· A revised methodology for data collection;
· The list of stakeholders to be consulted; and
· A summary of preliminary findings, highlighting key issues of focus.
c) A final report, to be submitted within 60 working days (30 days for each investee) of contract signature, that will include:
· Gender and access to finance analysis of the solar industry in Malawi and Zimbabwe, with a specific focus on women;
· An Assessment of FINCOOP Savings and Credit Cooperative in Malawi and MoneyMart Finance in Zimbabwe as it pertains to gender and access to finance; and
· Recommendations on how an integrated approach could enable financial institutions to profitably serve women.
7.0Duration of Service.
The assignment will be completed in 60 working days. The assignment is expected to start on 1 June 2020.
The Consultant should propose the team considered appropriate to carry out the assignment. The team should have representatives in each of the two countries who can execute the task. At a minimum, the team should include the following expertise:
· Renewable Energy Specialist and Gender Specialist.
· Relevant university degrees.
· At least 7 years of experience, private sector development in renewable energy, financial services and gender.
· Advanced skills in quantitative and qualitative data collection, analysis and presentation.
· Experience in the target markets.
· Demonstrated ability to manage consulting assignments and consulting team to deliver written reports.
· Excellent communication skills in English.
Preference will be given to one consultant with presence/ team members in both countries.
Interested and qualified (individual or institutional) consultants are invited to submit their proposal(s) comprising the following:
· An understanding of the consultancy requirements.
· Methodology and work plan for performing the assignment.
· Detailed reference list indicating the scope and magnitude of similar assignments.
· Relevant services undertaken in the past five (5) years.
· Registration and other relevant statutory documents (this applies to Institutional consultants).
· Financial proposal showing clearly the budgeted cost for the work to be conducted by the consultant under the scope of work above.
AECF is obliged by the Kenyan tax authorities to withhold taxes on service contract fees as well as ensure VAT is charged where applicable. Applicants are advised to ensure that they have a clear understanding of their tax position with regards to provisions of Kenya tax legislation when developing their proposals.**
An evaluation committee will be formed by the AECF which will include employees. All members will be bound by the same standards of confidentiality. Bidders should ensure that they fully respond to all criteria to be comprehensively evaluated. In deciding the final selection of qualified bidder, the technical quality of the proposal will be given a weighting of 70% based on the evaluation criteria below. Only the financial proposal of those bidders who qualify technically will be reviewed. The financial proposal will be allocated a weighting of 30% and the proposals will be ranked in terms of total points scored.
Understanding the Terms of Reference-5
Methodology and work – plan for performing the assignment -25
Demonstration of years of experience in similar work-15
Geographical Reach: Demonstrate relevant geographical experience, knowledge and reach to effectively carry out the consultancy-10
Detailed reference list indicating the scope and magnitude of similar assignments-15
Financial proposal; clarity, relevance, reality to market of value/ value for money of cost for the assignment (inclusive of any applicable tax)-30
AECF reserves the right to determine the structure of the process, number of short-listed participants, the right to withdraw from the proposal process, the right to change this timetable at any time without notice and reserves the right to withdraw this tender at any time, without prior notice and without liability to compensate and/or reimburse any party. World Bank Electricity Access in Sub-Saharan Africa Report, 2019 World Bank Global Findex report, 2018
How to apply
AECF invites qualified consultants/firms to send a proposal email@example.com, clearly marked “Terms of Reference for Gender and Access to Finance Consultant” to be received no later than20May2020 by 5.00 pm East Africa Time (GMT +3)addressed toThe AECF, Procurement Department.All clarifications and/ or questions should be sent firstname.lastname@example.org.*