Role and Candidate Profile
The High Council has recently voted to hire a new Chief Executive Officer (CEO).
The new CEO will lead the overall direction and administration of the institution’s products and services with a team of 5 Afghan directors (Business Development, Credit & Risks, Operations, Technical Services, and Finance) and will be personally accountable to the ADF’s High Council for the following tasks:
- Supporting the ADF role as a leading lender to agriculture in Afghanistan, both lending directly to farmers, agribusinesses, and select non-financial intermediaries and lending to financial institutions for on-lending to farmers and agribusinesses;
- Ensuring that the ADF is sufficiently capitalized and is able to generate enough income to cover operating costs and able to reach financial sustainability;
- Expanding wholesale lending activities and developing new products and lines of business for the ADF;
- Increasing the percentage of funds invested in the ADF loan portfolio, while reducing the non-performing loan rate;
- Rebuilding and grooming a team of local senior managers capable of enabling the ADF to reach a high level of efficiency in its operations and assuring that they perform to a high standard;
- Enhancing the institutional capacity of the ADF.
The High Council expects the CEO to build up the success and future sustainability of the fund on three fundamental pillars: solid governance, airtight policies and procedures and human capital. He/she must also exhibit an uncompromising commitment to civility and ethical behavior, playing by the rules and doing the right thing.
The successful candidate will have the following responsibilities:
Leadership and Management:
Develop and execute an appropriate strategy for the ADF • Lead and manage the Executive Team to achieve strategic objectives • Establish a dynamic and effective organizational structure • Guide and motivate the staff; determine appropriate staffing levels, composition, and remuneration • Develop a results orientated, high-performance culture based on sound performance objectives.
• Prepare and update every year a rolling strategic and an annual business plan • Lead the development of products and services • Guide the building of a large, sustainable client base.
Credit & Risk Management:
• Ensure a high-quality loan portfolio through an effective credit management system • Identify and mitigate credit, operational and business risks • Verify that the right policies and procedures are in place, respected and updated.
• Achieve forecast earnings and other financial objectives • Monitor that the ADF maintains accurate accounting records, financial reporting, and controls • Prepare annual budget and control operating costs.
• Serve as the chief spokesperson for the ADF • Maintain an effective communications relationship with key stakeholders • Respond to media requests and promote a positive image for the ADF to the wider community.
Board Reporting and Relationship:
• Complete High Council reports which are both timely and accurate • Develop an effective, professional working relationship and maintain excellent communications with the High Council and its working committees.
The ideal candidate profile will include:
- Master’s Degree in Finance, Economics, Management or related field of study;
- Senior leadership experiences gained in development finance and/or fund management, with a strong understanding of agricultural credits and trade finance products;
- Demonstrable successes in designing and implementing successful strategies, developing new products and services, building operational and financially strong businesses, and delivering solid results.
- Superior knowledge of broad value chains and access to finance in developing markets;
- Willingness to work for a standalone government-owned organisation and commit the highest level of personal integrity, independence, ethics, and transparency;
- Effective communication skills for collaborating with a broad range of stakeholders;
- Excellent coordination skills and ability to deliver under urgent deadlines;
- Proven abilities to focus, align and build performing teams in complex situations;
- Personal skills and interest for operating in a market like Afghanistan.
About the Organization
The Agricultural Development Fund (ADF) operates as a development finance institution providing agricultural credit to the farmers and agribusinesses of Afghanistan.
Originally started in 2010 as a USAID project, Agricultural Credit Enhancement, with $100 million in seed capital, the ADF now operates as an Afghan government sponsored fund under the tutelage of the Ministry of Agriculture, Irrigation, and Livestock (MAIL). It is governed by a board (the High Council), comprised of representatives of the public and private sectors, with two lending windows:
1) Direct lending to small commercial farmers and to wide range of agribusinesses from producers and processors to wholesalers and exporters and suppliers. Loan values have ranged from $100,000 to $3,000,000, with a minimum transaction size of $100 thousand. A new loan product is under development for loans of $50,000.
2) Loans to financial institutions and non-financial intermediaries (e.g. farm stores) for on-lending to farmers and small agribusinesses.
The ADF day to day operations are managed by an expatriate CEO from the main office in Kabul, with five regional offices employing more than 40 young Afghan professionals.
As of year-end 2016, the ADF capital was $87 million, with outstanding loan balances of approximately $25 million. It has sufficient capital to fund its next 2-3 years of projected growth but it is expected that more funds will need to be raised thereafter to support the expansion of access to agricultural credit to more clients.