Fund for African Rural Innovation Promotion

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How FARIP implements ventures


1.    FARIP explores innovative ideas in selected rural areas, either through its own staff or through competent local consultants. These explorations are done in the classical „programme mode“ of a typical charity until an idea has taken shape. As soon as an idea has been defined sufficiently and its African ownership has been clarified, FARIP switches to the behaviour of a venture investor towards an entrepreneur.
2.    Explorations also mean action research (research and development) which will work on interesting new technologies and operating systems and make them known. The results of the action research will inform the exploration of ideas and vice versa.
3.    Roughly fifty per cent of available funding will be used for the "programme mode“, i.e. for exploration and action research. As soon as a pilot undertaking has been defined so that its pre-commercial phase is ready for being funded, the other half of the available funds will be used as an investment for the undertaking according to the rules of a normal loan.
4.    FARIP does not itself invest in an own company. FARIP invests in African companies (or future companies), who want to try out convincing innovations. A successful venture must then become a registered company in an African country.
5.    FARIP has its own criteria to decide to fund an innovative idea. FARIP follows progress through milestones and releases the agreed upon funding according to the results achieved. For this and in order to save costs, FARIP uses telepresence via electronic media to the extent possible. However, telepresence will be supported with local staff who will personally visit the companies.
6.    On behalf of a donor FARIP may explore and analyse a specific undertaking to find out whether it could become a suitable venture according to FARIP criteria. Such a task has to be funded through a specific budget made available by the sponsor.
7.    On behalf of a donor FARIP may explore in a certain region or thematic area in order to assess the commercial potential of a region or a theme. Such explorations, too, have to be funded via a specific budget made availble by the donor.
8.    Once entrepreneurs are active in their start-up ventures FARIP organizes their necessary instructions and training. Mentored peer-exchange learning among African entrepreneurs is an important strategy for tapping synergies and facilitating shared learning. Such trainings and peer-exchange learning is funded through "programme mode" with funds from donors.