Financing and capacity building for micro and small Climate-smart Enterprises: Filling the gap of the missing middle - Internationale Climate Initiative (IKI)
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Financing and capacity building for micro and small Climate-smart Enterprises: Filling the gap of the missing middle

As of: January 2022

Small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) make significant contributions to climate protection by developing and offering innovative services and products for greenhouse gas mitigation or to adapt to the consequences of climate change. The project combines the development of knowledge and resources for socially-inclusive and climate-friendly SMEs by supporting a favourable institutional framework. As part of the Corona Response Package, the SEED project supports inclusive and sustainable enterprises at different stages, from start-up to growth and scaling. Selected start-ups receive the “Low Carbon Award”, which, in addition to the prize money, also includes technical accompanying measures. . Innovative business ideas are disseminated and cooperations for a resilient, green and socially-integrative economy are launched via the high-profile award ceremony, web-based tools, virtual platforms and personal exchange formats.

State of implementation/results

  • The project combines knowledge and resource building for socially-inclusive and climate-friendly small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) with the promotion of enabling institutional frameworks, and extends this offering with a combination of green-recovery-related topics.
  • To date, numerous winners have been awarded the "SEED Low Carbon Award" in public ceremony, including participants from Ghana, India, Indonesia, South Africa, Thailand and Uganda. They are implementing business models predominantly focused on selling climate-friendly applications for lighting and heating to local, rural households. The startups receive proven SEED training programs (conducted in collaboration with local business development service providers) to improve and scale up their business models. The 2021 SEED Low-Carbon Award winners are featured on the SEEB website (…).
  • In the wake of the COVID-19 crisis, project activities were expanded to include a digital support program to increase SME resilience in relevant target countries.
  • In the face of the COVID-19 crisis, so-called participatory "train the trainers" workshops were expanded to enhance support programs and tools of local business development service providers. Virtual workshops addressed the critical resilience mechanisms for socially-inclusive and climate-smart small and medium-sized businesses.
  • To improve access to finance for socially-inclusive and climate-smart SMEs, Practitioner Labs Climate Finance were held in South Africa, Ghana, Indonesia, India and Thailand in 2019, 2020, and 2021. The Labs promote the design, development, and implementation of prototype financial products and instruments in the areas of climate adaptation and mitigation. An additional Lab is planned for 2022 in Uganda.
  • SEED's Climate Finance for SMEs Report published how climate finance interventions can leverage the potential of climate-smart SMEs to implement climate mitigation and adaptation activities.
  • In 2019 and 2020, SEED conducted national policy dialogues in South Africa and Ghana. In 2021, the process will be conducted in India and Indonesia. In addition, regional policy dialogues will be held in Africa and Asia in 2021 in cooperation with Go4SDGs.
  • National SEED Hubs will be established in Uganda, Ghana, South Africa, Indonesia, India and Thailand in collaboration with local actors and organizations. The national hubs are direct contacts for SMEs on the ground, provide local networks, and coordinate the project's upcoming activities in the respective country.
  • Further, SEED published the report "Mapping Enterprise Resilience to COVID-19" with six essential resilience factors as well as good practices that distinguish particularly resilient companies from the SEED program. The report highlights how governments and other stakeholders can support SMEs, especially during this crisis.

Project data

Ghana, India, Indonesia, South Africa, Thailand, Uganda

Implementing organisation:
adelphi research gemeinnützige GmbH

Implementing partner(s):
  • Global Village Energy Partnership (GVEP)
  • Nexii
  • United Nations Development Programme (UNDP)
  • United Nations Environment Programme (UN Environment)

BMU grant:
7.340.437,74 €

04/2013  till  12/2022


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