Venture Manager/Senior Venture Manager
The Clean Cooking Alliance
The Clean Cooking Alliance (CCA) works with a global network of partners to build a dynamic and financially sustainable industry that makes clean cooking accessible to families around the world. Established in 2010, CCA supports the development, sale, distribution, and consistent use of clean cooking solutions that transform lives by improving health, protecting the climate and environment, and helping families save time and money. In alignment with the Sustainable Development Goals, CCA is working to achieve universal access to clean cooking by 2030.
The Senior Manager will play a crucial role in implementing CCA’s venture-facing activities to support entrepreneurs who build innovative and scalable companies that contribute to accelerating universal access to cleaner cooking solutions. The Senior Manager will evaluate businesses and design and oversee strategic projects to help these businesses innovate and reach scale.
The Venture Catalyst is part of the larger Market Strengthening Program, which aims to demonstrate the viability of commercially attractive and scalable business models to deliver high-impact clean cooking solutions by developing – and implementing – a range of interventions aimed at businesses, markets, and consumers. The Market Strengthening Program has three components:
- The Venture Catalyst aims to provide a broad range of specialized support to selected companies, solidifying their commercial viability, enhancing their investment-readiness, and facilitating access to growth capital. The venture portfolio currently includes 30 companies operating in 14 countries.
- The Demand Catalyst aims to increase consumer demand for clean cooking through interventions that help to elevate the issue of clean cooking amongst potential consumers and facilitate affordability and availability of solutions.
- The Market Catalyst focuses on market-level interventions that improve the enabling environment for companies and catalyze investment. To achieve these goals, the Market Catalyst generates market intelligence to address information asymmetries, develop policy briefs and other targeted tools, host curated convenings, and design targeted engagements to support relevant stakeholders, namely investors and policymakers.
The Senior Manager will be an integral member of CCA’s venture-facing team and will contribute to the Venture Catalyst as well as to other venture-facing initiatives of the Market Strengthening team, in close collaboration with others across CCA.
This is a global full-time position with working hours that are aligned with Washington D.C., USA or Nairobi, Kenya. Candidates applying for a position in the United States and the United Kingdom, where UNF has offices, will be considered for a staff position. Candidates applying for a position in all other countries will be considered for a contract position. There is a preference for candidates located in Nairobi.
- Evaluation of companies and identification of their requirements for support
- A core component of CCA’s is to engage with businesses in the clean cooking sector. CCA is looking for skilled professionals with a demonstrated ability to build strong, transparent and trusting relationships with businesses and other key stakeholders. The right candidate should have the competencies required to assess the financial viability and scalability, investment readiness, and operational feasibility of early-stage companies. The candidate should be able to work closely with such companies to determine their gaps in terms of business strategy and market entry, sales and marketing, personnel management and development, supply chain management, R&D, financial management, and governance.
- Design, execution, oversight and portfolio management of company technical assistance projects
- Following the evaluation of companies and identification of their support requirements together with the management team, CCA will execute these projects – either by providing support to companies under Program’s ‘building block’ offering or designing customized projects
- Where third parties are relevant, CCA develops and manages procurement and relationship with these partners, conduct contract negotiations, and support/monitor project implementation. After the TA has been completed, CCA is responsible for documenting the results and impact of the project e.g., in case studies which highlight successes, challenges, and learnings. CCA is also responsible for overseeing the collection of portfolio company KPIs which enable CCA and its funders to assess their impact.
- Support investment initiatives
- As mobilizing investment is a key pillar of the team’s priorities, CCA is involved in various investment initiatives. This includes developing relationships and further cementing CCA’s position as a trusted advisor to investors, from DFIs and commercial banks to impact fund managers and HNWIs/angel investors. The venture-facing team works closely with broader Market Strengthening colleagues to identify and assess pipeline opportunities, contribute insights and market intelligence to their due diligence processes, and design and implement TA projects which align with their priorities.
- Support execution of market intelligence, conevenings, and other thought leadership initiatives
- Given CCA’s role as a thought leader in private sector development and investment in the clean cooking sector, CCA contributes to various related internal and external thought leadership initiatives. This includes the development of white papers, reports, and other publications and tools, as well as the coordination of, or contribution to, CCA-hosted events and roundtables. The venture-facing team also often represents CCA by participating in sector- or investment-related roundtables and conferences organized by industry associations, development partners, and governments around the world.
CCA seeks candidates who can cultivate effective working relationships with people, internally and externally, from a wide variety of types of organizations, cultural backgrounds, and areas of expertise.
- Highly ethical with integrity and resilience; leads by example.
- Openness, humility, and a collaborative style.
- Strategic thinker with a curious, innovative mindset and proactive personality.
- Clear commitment to diversity, equity, and inclusion, with a demonstrated ability to work inclusively, promote greater voice, and enhance diversity and equity within CCA and with stakeholders.
- Ability to actively listen, inspire, motivate, and empower a high performing diverse team in multiple countries.
- Collaborative approach, modelling this behavior by being part of a cohesive team and using it to bring the best out of people.
- Effective relationship builder: ability to build trust and forge consensus within and outside the organization.
- Clear, transparent, and timely decision maker.
- Bachelor’s degree in relevant field required, with 8+ years business experience in an entrepreneurial environment, with experience in:
- Early-stage businesses or project development in relevant industries and markets.
- Accelerators, incubators, venture studio and other enterprise support programs
- Venture capital, early-stage private equity, or private debt investments
- Consulting experience in management consulting or in-house corporate strategy roles
- Experience in managing and implementing donor-funded programs and projects
- Demonstrated ability to diagnose business needs and collaboratively design solutions
- The ability to think strategically, and the willingness to exercise that ability regularly with enthusiasm so as to play an integral role in developing and implementing solutions to challenging problems
- Experience and wisdom, particularly in developing markets, that conveys credibility amongst stakeholders including senior management teams of companies, investors, government officials, and other ecosystem professionals
- A high degree of internal motivation and the ability to ‘self-start’ and work effectively in a global, often remote team spread across offices and time zones; and
- Comfort with ambiguity and an interest to help shape an evolving and growing organization that seeks to play a key role in influencing the growth of a rapidly shifting sector
- Energetic and positive attitude
- Solutions-oriented and able to manage and advance multiple task and responsibilities in a dynamic, fast-paced environment
- Attention to detail and strong organizational skills
- Problem-solver with a proactive, no-task-is-too-small nature who takes initiative
- Team-oriented, supportive work style, and able to work independently
- Excellent communicator, able to synthesize and convey complex information clearly
- Excellent judgment and creative problem-solving skills, including negotiation and conflict resolution skills
- Ability to work under pressure and handle stress
- High ethical standards and ability to maintain confidentiality and discretion with sensitive information
- Ability to learn new systems and collaboration platforms efficiently
- Proficiency in Office Suite (Word, Excel, Outlook, PowerPoint), with particular emphasis on ability to create compelling and professional PowerPoint materials
How to Apply
Candidates should email a CV and cover letter to firstname.lastname@example.org with the subject line “Application for Venture Manager/Senior Manager.”
At CCA, we commit to cultivating an environment that is diverse, inclusive, and equitable in our work and in the communities CCA serves. CCA affirms and reinforces its belief in equality and inclusion at all levels by hiring from diverse backgrounds, perspectives, and voices. And CCA recognizes that by committing to gender diversity, CCA will be better equipped to build an inclusive industry that makes clean cooking accessible to the three billion people who live each day without it.