Grassroots Business Funds: Africa, Asia & Latin America

The Grassroots Business Fund (GBF) is a financial business idea originally set up as the International Financial Corporation’s Grassroots Business Initiative (GBI). It handles funds and capital for grassroots businesses with high growth potential and concrete business plans; which are in need of support from corporate bodies in order to help them expand their range of businesses and give good starter business ideas an opportunity to thrive where possible.

As a Grassroots Business Initiative, their operations revolve basically around investing in grassroots businesses and their investments, as well as field-testing capacity-building approaches for the businesses and investments they are involved with. In other words, there has been extensive research work done on investments to be raised from base to finish and also enhancements of already existing business ventures. Also, the GBF as part of the International Financial Corporation builds the capacity of businesses through a systematic and well-proven approach with a high success rate.


The Grassroots Business Funds make strategic investments like straight debt investments, equity, mezzanine equity, and mezzanine debt (not secured by assets but the ability for the debt to be repaid due to free cash flow), given to companies with good growth potential and viable expansion plans.

As a fund, GBF has a sustainable capital scheme capable of holding investments with a long-term span, especially to businesses that have their patronage in communities with low-income rates. The funds create a platform for those grassroots investments to thrive in such areas of community, which in turn ensures the thriving and growth of such businesses. It not only provides financial aid but counseling and support through the period of business growth

The mission of GBF is to grow viable, sustainable, and inclusive businesses that generate earnings or cost savings for people in Africa, Asia, and Latin America, it works toward a world where economic opportunity reaches everyone. It also has a vision for poverty alleviation in low-income communities by boosting businesses concentration and expansion for firms with growth potentials that seem promising

grassroot business


  1. The investment focus of Grassroots Business Funds is on businesses that have commercial growth potential with the highest probability to succeed. That refers to most companies in their “growth stage”.
  2. GBF seeks companies with a defensive competitive advantage as displayed through the high barrier of entry, first-mover advantage, high-quality differentiated products, and so on.
  3. Companies with competent and strong management teams with track records are considered by GBF.
  4. Financially, GBF prefers between $750,000 to $2,500,000 investments with investment structures including equity, quasi-equity, loans, and guarantees. They, therefore, don’t seek control of your company but expect to exit investments within the 5-7-year time frame.
  5. Your company must be for-profit with a strong commitment to bringing measurable and sustainable social as well as economic impact to low communities. Such is economically important, from which local communities can benefit directly or indirectly.
  6. Companies and businesses should have an affecting capacity of 500 to 2,000 individuals in range while maintaining development and increasing capacity to scale up to 5 to 10 times within the period GBF would be investing in them.
  7. Presently, the geographical focus of GBF includes Africa (Kenya, Tanzania, Mozambique, Rwanda); Asia (India, Indonesia); Latin America (Bolivia, Peru, Colombia, Ecuador, Paraguay).

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