Mechanization Business Models Advisor

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Apply by 20 February 2018
Mid-level , Short-term contract assignment
Posted on 14 February 2018

Job Description


MD aims to:
* Identify pro-poor value chains in the three geographic clusters and analyze them to understand the opportunities and constraints.
* Identify commercial agents, able to relieve value chain constraints and exploit the opportunities.
* Increase smallholder farmer productivity by increasing access to output and service markets.
* Foster innovative ways of linking smallholder farmers and farmers’ groups with commercial markets.
* Create additional income earning opportunities for poor women and men through broad-based and sustainable pro-poor growth.
* Trigger lasting, ‘systemic’ changes in the markets systems around these sectors to reduce constraints to growth and to increase their capacity to innovate and deal with competitive, regulatory, social and environmental pressures, so that the benefits for the poor will sustain and expand in time.

MD has worked with both national/regional (NMAs) and local market actors (LMAs) in providing goods and services to farmers; however, more recently the focus has been on LMAs. These actors can be either individual entrepreneurs (IE’s) or farmer group enterprises (FGE’s) who are implementing one or more of the following business models to provide services to farmers:

* Breeding services: The quality of cattle and goats in communal farming areas is usually poor due to years of in-breeding and animals sell for low prices. MD has supported a number of models around breed improvement for goats, and is considering cattle breeding interventions.
* Egg incubation: Hatching rates of indigenous chickens are typically very low in the communal farming areas. MD is working with a FGE in Mutare who have successfully rolled out a business model around the purchase, hatching and sale of chicks, or toll hatching of eggs.
* Tractor services: Tractors can provide farmers with a wide range of services including ploughing, discing, harrowing, planting, weeding, spraying, slashing, transportation and harvesting. MD has thus far been working with FGE’s who have two-wheeler and small (25 hp) four-wheeler tractors, and will soon be promoting large (75 hp) tractors.
* Aggregation services:
* Crops: MD has been working with a NMA Peak Trading which manufactures and distributes hermetically sealing metal silos. These silos allow LMA’s to safe store commodity for resale at a later time when prices are at a premium.
* Livestock: Goats provide farmers with a more accessible source of income than do cattle, which are typically sold when there a family distress or major expense. The goat aggregation and sales model has evolved and the conditions for profitability better understood.
* Shelling services: Groundnut, maize and multi-crop shellers reduce the labour and drudgery associated with manual shelling. MD has to date worked with a number of LMAs which provide toll shelling services to neighboring farmers, and plans to scale this model on the back of encouraging preliminary results.
* Peanut butter manufacture: The local manufacture and retail of peanut butter can provide farmers with a market for their produce. In addition, toll manufacture of peanut butter can provide a useful income stream.
* Pen fattening: The value addition to communal cattle has potential to unlock increased incomes. FGE pen fattening models are being promoted by MD in all of the clusters, with mixed results. As per the goat aggregation model, MD better understands the conditions under which farmers can increase their profits.

Scope of Work
MD requires the services of an experienced and competent business advisor to analyze some of the abovementioned mechanization models and determine conditions under which they will be profitable. Models to be assessed include egg incubation, 75 hp tractor and shelling (multi-crop/maize and groundnut). For each model the advisor will:

1 Identify suppliers or the equipment and assess suitability for the LMA business models, taking into consideration cost, quality, productivity, fuel consumption, warrantee, maintenance and after-sales service.
2 Conduct a profitability analysis.


The following are key deliverables:
1 Inception presentation, detailing the final workplan
2 Report: For each business model, the advisor will provide a report providing:

* Executive summary containing conclusions and recommendations
* Introduction providing an overview of the available equipment
* Results section providing
* Rating of the available equipment in the form of a table.
* Profitability analysis report, considering:
* Performance Indicators and Measurement (Ratio analysis)
* Sensitivity analysis
* Return on investment
* Return on Shareholders’ Equity
* Payback period

1 Final presentation: The advisor will develop a PowerPoint presentation of results, conclusions and recommendations. The advisor will provide give the team a presentation at the end of the assignment.

LFSP is seeking the services of relevantly qualified individuals with traceable experience in the agriculture sector.

Selection will be based on the following criteria:
* Advanced degree in Agricultural Engineering / Economics.
* Broad experience in the development of commercially sustainable smallholder tillage systems.
* Gross margins development and analysis
* Ability to analyze, critique and provide recommendations to mechanization business models
Send an -application pack’ to and copied to Chikumba, Penny before close of business on 31 January 2018.

The application pack will include:
1 Current CV
2 An application letter focusing on your experience relevant to the assignment, an outlining of your approach, number of days required and rate
3 Draft workplan

About the Organization

Palladium is a global leader in the design, development and delivery of Positive Impact - the intentional creation of enduring social and economic value. We work with foundations, investors, governments, corporations, communities and civil society to formulate strategies and implement solutions that generate lasting social, environmental and financial benefits.

For the past 50 years, we have been making Positive Impact possible. With a team of more than 2,500 employees operating in 90 plus countries and a global network of more than 35,000 technical experts, Palladium has improved - and is committed to continuing to improve - economies, societies and most importantly, people's lives.

Palladium is a child-safe organisation, and screens applicants for suitability to work with children. We also provide equal employment to all participants and employees without regard to race, color, religion, gender, age, disability, sexual orientation, veteran or marital status.

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