Lisette van Benthum

Network Facilitator

Arnhem, Netherlands

About Me

Currently I am working for Agri-ProFocus as the Network Facilitator for our AgriProFocus Country networks in Indonesia, Rwanda and Benin. Next to that I coordinate the knowledge theme Access to Finance within the worldwide network.

Previously I worked for SNV in Guinea Bissau as a Business Economic Advisor and a number of years for ICCO focussing a/o on the loans, guarantees and equity portfolio of ICCO. Just before moving to AgriProFocus I worked as a business development consultant for Fair & Sustainable Advisory Services.

For any questions related to Access to Finance, please do not hesitate to contact me.

Skills and Expertise


Posted By in Finance Worldwide
Posted 26 June 2017 at 07:20

Expanding access to finance for smallholders one lease at a time

New research from Financial Sector Deepening Africa (FSDA) and Nathan Associates highlights agricultural lease finance as a way to expand access to finance for smallholders, allowing for greater mechanization of agriculture in sub-Saharan Africa. This blog summarizes some of the key opportunities and barriers to uptake and usage of lease finance - concluding with the recommendation of a potential fund that would help share the initial costs of agricultural equipment.

To read the blog, please follow this link

To access the full research, please follow this link

Posted By in Finance Worldwide
Posted 26 June 2017 at 07:12

Webinar recording: Agricultural Leasing; expanding access to finance for smallholders

Duration: 1 hour 17 minutes

Description: Making Finance Work for Africa (MFW4A), Financial Sector Deepening Africa (FSD – Africa), and Nathan Associates are pleased to present a webinar based on, Agricultural Leasing in sub-Saharan Africa.

Although leasing is a growing form of asset finance in African markets, its use in agriculture remains a nascent concept. Why is this the case? How could leasing help to bridge the finance gap in the sector and ultimately improve rural livelihoods? More specifically, what role can Development Finance Institutions (DFIs) play in expanding agricultural leasing in order to support much-needed growth in the African agriculture sector ?

The webinar took place on 31 May 2017 and discussed these issues, based on a recent market study undertaken by Nathan Associates in Ethiopia, Ghana, Kenya, Mozambique, Nigeria, Tanzania, Uganda and Zambia. The webinar was recorded and

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Simeon Lumbe great research!

1 month 2 weeks ago

Posted By in Finance Worldwide
Posted 26 June 2017 at 06:50

Dutch fintech, FACTS, scales up activities in East Africa

providing much needed working capital to established small and medium sized enterprises (SMEs) in East Africa

FACTS helps fast growing SMEs in East Africa manage the timing of liquidity: getting paid when goods are delivered instead of waiting for client payment, which can take up to 60 to 90 days. Their product is called Supply Chain Finance: a new concept in Africa, addressing the “missing middle” not served by banks or microfinancing institutions. FACTS established a firm basis in this field over the past 18 months, supported by management investments and institutions such as the Dutch Good Growth Fund, ICCO Investments and SEAF, and is now ready to scale up.

For the full article, follow this link.  

Posted By in Organised Farmers
Posted 26 June 2017 at 06:31

Safaricom launches digital solution for farmers

Safaricom has launched Connected Farmer, a mobile and web based service that will help agricultural processing businesses in production planning by opening a communication line with farmers.

Connected Farmer enables the organizations transact with farmers by leveraging M-PESA to make and receive payments securely. It also helps register and key in information such as expected production quantities helping processors plan especially on pick up and work force resulting in overall cost reduction in production.

Connected Farmer is a partnership between Safaricom and Mezzanine Ware – a company that specializes in developing mobile enabled solutions for businesses. The launch follows a six month pilot which saw 12 firms with 80,000 farmers sign up. The technology also help farmers in tracking sales and cash management.

For the full article, follow this link.

Posted By in AgriProFocus Netherlands
Posted 11 May 2017 at 10:49

Expression of Interest: Partner with CGAP to Open APIs

5 may 2017

Are you interested in exploring how open APIs could help your business contribute to more useful, sustainable, and scalable financial solutions for low-income customers?

CGAP is looking to work with digital financial service (DFS) providers, fintechs, and other organizations that have well-established financial inclusion assets and capabilities to share via open APIs. CGAP will provide financing and technical assistance to implement an open API business and motivate third-party developers to explore and use APIs to build innovative products and services. Our goal is to help industry explore business models based on open APIs and produce new and successful demonstration cases.

Submit Expression of Interest by June 9, 2017

Is your organization a good fit?

CGAP is looking for digital payments providers, financial institutions, and other financial service providers that have:

* Assets that are relevant to a range of third parties and for a range of innovat

... Read more

Posted By in AgriProFocus Netherlands
Posted 11 May 2017 at 10:28

Digitizing Value Chain Finance for Smallholder Farmers

24 April 2017, Max Mattern

CGAP notes in a recently released publication, “Digitizing Value Chain Finance for Smallholders,” innovations in digital financial services offer an unprecedented opportunity to extend the reach of value chain finance. By increasing the information available on smallholders’ financial and agricultural lives and reducing transaction costs, these services have the potential to provide excluded smallholder segments with a range of products and services designed to increase productivity, manage risk, and access new markets. For example, aggregation and analysis of digital data related to sales, payments, and seasonality of cash flows among value chain actors promise to overcome barriers to providing credit not only to smallholders, but also to the traders, processors, and retailers that serve them. At the same time, branchless banking and the rise of mobile devices are making payments to and from small

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Posted By in AgriProFocus Netherlands
Posted 11 May 2017 at 10:18

Mystery Shopping for Digital Financial Services

Michelle Kaffenberger, Danielle Sobol, 19 April 2017

Mystery shopping is a tool used externally by market research companies, watchdog organizations, or internally by companies themselves to measure quality of service, or compliance with regulation, or to gather specific information about products and services. The mystery consumer's specific identity and purpose are generally not known by the establishment being evaluated.
Mystery shoppers perform specific tasks such as purchasing a product, asking questions, registering complaints or behaving in a certain way, and then provide detailed reports or feedback about their experiences.

In a mystery shopping study in Zambia, most shoppers were able to register for a digital financial services account without showing the necessary identification. These shoppers were able to bypass over-the-counter transaction limits. And most agents who quoted transaction fees to shoppers told shoppers the wrong amoun

... Read more

Posted By in AgriProFocus Netherlands
Posted 23 April 2017 at 05:05

Affordability & Financing Models for the Smallholder Market

A playbook for enabling smallholder farmer customer uptake of products and services

June 2015, USAID and Fintrac

'Given the financing gap, and the fact that most farmer income is used to meet basic needs, businesses serving smallholder farmers must rely on innovative methods to enable customers to purchase products and services. Without doing so, companies risk having a limited market for their products and services.

There are a number of promising affordability and financing strategies available for companies to offer customers outside of traditional commercial lending. In many cases, companies can couple these strategies with product and service delivery to offer a comprehensive solution that increases customer adoption.

This playbook will assist partners in understanding the variety and viability of the strategies available to help customers afford a product or service and will help them&nbsp

... Read more

Posted By in AgriProFocus Netherlands
Posted 19 April 2017 at 07:07

Results Measurement for Sustainable Private Sector Development Course, August 2017

Dear colleagues,

We are pleased to inform you that we will offer the Results Measurement for Sustainable Private Sector Development Course in August 2017. This 5-day course will take place in The Netherlands from 14th to 18th August 2017.

This course targets intervention and results measurement staff and managers that are working in Private Sector Development programs. The course offers a comprehensive and in-depth understanding of all aspects that practitioners need to set up a practical results measurement system for internal learning and communicating credible results. Many practitioners have benefited from this reputed course over the past seven years. The course is offered by HPC and MDF, with Hans Posthumus and Phitcha Wanitphon as lead trainers.

Course information can be found through this link. For more information, see also or email Hans Posthumus at

There is a

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Posted By in AgriProFocus Netherlands
Posted 17 April 2017 at 11:08

Watermelon: Recommendations for Maintaining Postharvest Quality

This 4 page publication by Trevor V. Suslow of the California University gives you a short overview of recommendations of maintaining post harvest quality of watermelon. He a/o touches the following subjects: Maturity Indices, Quality Indices, Optimum Temperature, Optimum Relative Humidity, Rates of Respiration, Rates of Ethylene Production, Response to Ethylene, Responses to Controlled Atmospheres (CA), Physical and Physiological Disorders, Pathological Disorders, Special Considerations, Maturity and Quality and Disorders.

To access the publication please follow this link.

Posted By in AgriProFocus Netherlands
Posted 28 March 2017 at 04:34

Scaling up inclusive distribution in emerging markets

Business Fights Poverty recently published a discussion paper on how to scale inclusive distribution networks that enhance economic opportunities in downstream value chains ( This was an output of our Challenge on Inclusive Distribution, supported by Citi Foundation. The paper outlined three inclusive distribution models and eight key enablers to scale these models, and was intended to lay the foundation for further investigation and engagement.

Over the last couple of years, many Fast Moving Consumer Goods (FMCG) companies have employed new models of inclusive distribution that engage and expand opportunities for low-income entrepreneurs and micro-enterprises in downstream value chains to help increase sales and reach new markets.

Despite the promise of inclusive distribution networks, very few have been able to reach scale. Without scale, they are considered a nice-to-have rather than a need-to-have for the busines

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Posted By in AgriProFocus Netherlands
Posted 27 March 2017 at 03:30

Effect of Colored Polyethylene Mulch on Soil Temperature, Growth, Fruit Quality and Yield of Tomato (Lycopersicon esculentum Mill.)

Authors: Tewodros Tesfaye, Endalew Tigabu, Yohannes Gedamu, Hayal Lemma
Publisher: World Journal of Agricultural Sciences

The experiment was conducted to evaluate the effect of different colored plastic sheets as mulching on the performance of tomato yield, quality parameters and soil temperature. The average fruit diameter varied from 38.57 mm (control) to 43.46 mm (Blue colored plastic mulch). Plastic mulches were superior over and significantly different from control considering the average fruit diameter. However, there is no any significant variation among tested plastic mulches. The variation within plastic was 42.94 to 43.46 mm. Average fruit firmness black and blue plastic mulches have above average fruit firmness as compare to control and clear plastic. Even if there is no significant variation among plastic mulches, black (4.102 kg) and

... Read more

Posted By in AgriProFocus Netherlands
Posted 27 March 2017 at 03:25

Effect of Low Density Polyethylene Bag and 1-MCP Sachet for Suppressing Fruit Rot Disease and Maintaining Storage Quality of Mangosteen (Garcinia mangostana L.)

Authors: T. T. Vo, P. Jitareerat, A.K. Uthairatanakij, S. Limmatvapirat, M. Kato
Publisher: International Food Research Journal, 2016

The effect of packaging bags on fruit rot disease suppression and fruit quality retention of mangosteens (Garcinia mangostana L.) was investigated at 13°C. Harvested mangosteen fruit at stage 3 of maturity (full red pericarp) were packed in either a perforated polyethylene (PPE) bag, a low density polyethylene (LDPE) bag, or an LDPE bag combined with a 1-MCP sachet (EthylBlocTM), with non-packed fruit used as the control. All samples were kept at 13°C for 30 days. Fruit incorporating an LDPE bag + 1-MCP sachet did not show fruit rot disease throughout the 30 days while those in a PPE bag showed the highest fruit rot disease. Fruit in the LDPE bag alone had lower fruit rot disease as c

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Posted By in AgriProFocus Netherlands
Posted 25 March 2017 at 06:54

Lignes directrices pour organiser une foire de l'innovation Paysanne

C’est avec énorme plaisir que Prolinnova Secretariat International vous partage la publication quelques lignes directrices pour organiser une foire de l’innovation paysanne en français et anglais.

Lignes directrices en Français, suivi ce lien

It is with pleasure that Prolinnova International Secretariat share the publication with guideline on how to organise a Farmer Innovation Fair.

Guidelines in English, follow this link

Cibarani Cibarani Thank you for that jewel... we were dessesperately lookinf for something treating that issue...thanks again

4 months 3 weeks ago

Daoulata MAIGA Bonjour Lisette , merci beaucoup pour le partage de cet document très intéressant qui pourra aider pour l'organisation des grandes foires .Je me ferais le plaisir de partager sur nos réseaux sociaux et le mailchimp ,pour une large diffusion !

4 months 3 weeks ago

Lisette van Benthum Daoulata, Oui s'il vous plaît partager le par d'autres canaux sociaux aussi

4 months 3 weeks ago

Daoulata MAIGA Oui lisette c'est déjà partager  sur la page facebook , twitter et le news letter bientôt ! 

4 months 3 weeks ago

Posted By in AgriProFocus Netherlands
Posted 15 March 2017 at 12:28

Embassy of the Netherlands in Indonesia calls for climate adaptation and mitigation proposals!

Embassy of the Kingdom of the Netherlands partners with the Dutch private finance challenge ( for the ‘MoMo challenge Indonesia 2017’: a country wide competition of ideas how to attract private investment for mitigation or adaptation projects in Indonesia. The two most promising proposals of 2017 stand to win 25,000-Euro to further their business case.

MoMo4Climate is an initiative of IUCN Netherlands, ECN and the Dutch ministry of Foreign Affairs and was started to bring climate ideas and private climate finance together. The bridge to private finance is a good business case. The initiative tests the business cases presented with financial experts, offers advice and awards grant support to the most promising ideas.

See for criteria and past winners.

Today the first of three calls is launched for climate ideas in Indonesia. The panel of experts will meet

... Read more

Posted By in AgriProFocus Netherlands
Posted 15 March 2017 at 12:24




€ 25.000 for the best climate business cases

The MoMo challenge 2017 has been launched! Also this year, organisations and companies that have an innovative business case focused on promoting either climate change mitigation or adaptation in a developing country can compete to receive € 25.000 seed finance for further developing their business case. Project proposals can be submitted on-line through this link. This round closes on 1 April.

MoMo is looking for promising projects that fulfill the following criteria:

* The project is focused on the clean tech, food, agro, or water sector

* The project’s intervention is aimed at a developing country

* The project contains the involvement of at least one Dutch organization

* The project is realistic and actionable

* The project is concrete and has potential for up-scaling

The Dutch private climate finance challenge ‘MoMo4Climate’ calls

... Read more

Nkotanyi Francis Ngabirano This is wonderful.

5 months 6 days ago

Fortunatus MLYANDENA Thanks

4 months 2 weeks ago


SANEC Trade mission Benin & Togo

Event posted by in AgriProFocus Netherlands
  09 May 2017 to 12 May 2017 - All Day Event
  Benin and Togo

Handelsmissie: Landbouw, Water, Energie & Logistiek naar Cotonou, Benin en Lomé, Togo 09-12 Mei 2017

Bent u een ondernemer en heeft u interesse in de Beninese & Togolese markt? Ga dan mee met een uitgaande missie naar die twee landen. De missie staat open voor partijen uit alle sectoren, maar heeft een focus op de sectoren landbouw, water, energie en agrologistiek. 

SANEC organiseert deze missie in samenwerking met AFRIC, de Beninse Consulaat in Nederland, NAFTC-AFRICA, de Beninse en Togolese KvK’s en de Nederlandse Ambassade in Benin.

Deelname aan deze missie biedt Nederlandse bedrijven ingangen bij overheden en bedrijven in Benin en Togo, inzicht in de kansen en mogelijkheden in de markt en kennismaking met potentiële zakenpartners. Het programma bestaat o.a. uit individuele matchmaking, bezoeken aan bedrijven, organisaties en projecten in de desbetreffende sectoren, een seminar en een netwerkreceptie.

Waarom deelnemen aan een missie naar Benin & Togo?

Benin & Togo zijn de stabielste landen in de We

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Linking Farmers to Markets in Africa

Event posted by in AgriProFocus Netherlands
  15 May 2017 to 19 May 2017 - All Day Event
  Accra, Ghana

Based on the success of previous training program editions on “Linking Farmers to Markets in Africa” conducted in both English and French, IFDC is proud to announce the seventh edition to be conducted in English in Accra, Ghana, May 15-19, 2017

Please feel free to pass this along to any colleagues that may be interested. Many thanks.


· Producer organizations and trade associations.

· Government officials dealing with formulating and implementing agricultural and trade policies.

· Service providers such as financial institutions, insurance companies, transporters, mobile phone services, ICT platform solutions, market information services, business development services, etc.

· Agribusinesses dealing with farmers: processors, exporters and importers, agro-dealers, etc.

· Representatives of national and international organizations involved in funding agricultural development and enterprise projects.


· Discuss the theo

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Posted By in AgriProFocus Netherlands
Posted 9 March 2017 at 10:56

Africa Agriculture Status Report 2016

AGRA, 2016

The 2016 Agriculture Status Report has as its main objective to:

(i) highlight major trends in African agriculture, the drivers of those trends, and the emerging challenges that Africa’s food systems are facing in the 21st century;

(ii) identify policies and programs that can support the movement of Africa’s farming systems from subsistence-oriented towards more commercialized farming systems that can raise productivity, increase incomes, generate employment and contribute to economic growth; 

(iii) identify areas that enable better targeting of investment resources to increase agriculture productivity;

(iv) identify the necessary conditions, appropriate technologies, and institutions that can propel and catalyze African agricultural transformation;

(v) examine the past and the present role of public and private sector investment in agriculture, and the success fact

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Idrissa BA Thanks Lisette for sharing

5 months 1 week ago


Nigeria & Benin Agro-Logistics Workshop/Atelier

Event posted by in AgriProFocus Netherlands
  06 March 2017, All Day Event
  The Hague, the Netherlands

Le 6 mars, NABC, RVO et WUR organiseront un atelier d'agro logistique sur le Nigeria et le Bénin. Cet atelier portera sur la question des pertes après récolte, des goulots d'étranglement dans la chaîne de valeur ainsi que sur les relations commerciales entre les deux pays. Le but est de découvrir comment la technologie et les solutions néerlandaises peuvent être mises en pratique ici, et si par une mission commerciale dans les deux pays, les membres du secteur privé hollandais seraient intéressés à s'impliquer. S'il vous plaît contacter Daan Vreeburg si vous êtes intéressé.

Pour plus d'informations et d'inscription, suivez ce lien.

On March 6th, NABC, RVO, and WUR will be organising an Agro-logistics workshop concerning Nigeria and Benin. This workshop will focus on the issue of post-harvest losses, bottlenecks in the value chain as well as trade relations between the two countries. The goal is to discover how Dutch technology and solutions can be put in practice here, and w

... Read more