Request for Proposals: Unit Economics Framework and Analysis for the Clean Cooking Sector
The United Nations Foundation’s Clean Cooking Alliance (CCA) is accepting proposals from firms interested in undertaking critical research on the unit economics for a select group of stoves, fuels, and business models in the clean cooking sector. This work will be foundational for CCA’s Results-Based Financing Accelerator (RBFA), which seeks to enable Results-Based Financing (RBF) to drive greater impact in the clean cooking ecosystem.
Background of Assignment
CCA led the development of a systems strategy for the clean cooking ecosystem, with the goal to drive greater collaboration, transparency, and ambition toward universal access to clean cooking by 2030. RBF, particularly through the growth of climate finance and carbon credits, was identified as one of the most promising opportunities of the upcoming decade. While exciting progress has been made to advance RBF for clean cooking in recent years, the value of clean cooking must be better articulated, transaction costs reduced, and participating actors supported for the sector to capitalize on this tremendous opportunity.
As part of the Clean Cooking Systems Strategy, the Clean Cooking Alliance and its partners are launching a Clean Cooking RBFA, which will fund pilots and research to enable this radical acceleration, in addition to serving connection and communications functions.
The vision of RBFA is an effective global industry platform to galvanize support for results-based finance in clean cooking. It is expected to deliver this vision through 4 work-streams to solve problems that constrain the application of RBFs in the clean cooking space:
- RBF Policy platform to enable coordination of common policies, standards, and measurement methodologies to reduce uncertainty and transactions costs.
- RBF expertise deployment network to support outcome buyers, implementers, and sellers with certified capacity to design, deploy and participate in RBF programs
- RBF Innovation Lab to enable rapid learning in data-poor environments through testing market assumptions, supporting application of RBF in challenging market segments
- Responsive knowledge curation facility to support current and potential RBF actors with rapidly curated information
The RBFA is expected to focus horizontal workstream activities in areas that have the greatest prospect for innovation and additional funding for clean cooking. Key initial verticals include:
- Voluntary carbon markets
- Conditional cash transfers
- Impact investments and financial markets
- Digital technology and economy
The impact logic of RBFA is that demand and supply side subsidies will adjust unit economics of clean cooking in identified markets sufficiently to enable existing providers to reach operational viability and commercial sustainability quicker, encouraging entry of new suppliers. This improves the overall attractiveness of clean cooking markets for commercial investors and financial markets, enabling commercial capital to flow into clean cooking markets, while also incentivizing companies operating in others markets to also enter the clean cooking market with ancillary services (e.g. data analytics, sensors etc.). These collectively will hasten the evolution of clean cooking markets where markets will increasingly tend towards structures with a critical mass of providers offering high quality cooking solutions at a fair price which increasing numbers of people and businesses are willing and able to use.
CCA is now seeking a firm to assist in determining the prototypical unit economics for a range of stoves, fuels, and business models in the clean cooking sector. This work is essential for RBF program developers as they determine demand and supply side subsidy levels while also identifying additional opportunities to reduce costs to consumers. This work will build upon the pioneering recent work by MECS, EnDev, ESMAP, and other partners to advance stakeholder’s understanding of how best to use RBF for clean cooking.
Background of Organization
The Clean Cooking Alliance works with a global network of partners to build an inclusive industry that makes clean cooking accessible to the three billion people who live each day without it. Established in 2010, CCA is driving consumer demand, mobilizing investment to build a pipeline of scalable businesses, and fostering an enabling environment that allows the sector to thrive. Clean cooking transforms lives by improving health, protecting the climate and the environment, empowering women, and helping families save time and money.
The objectives of this assignment are as follows:
- Develop a cost-effective and widely usable framework and methodology for calculating unit economics across a representative group of stoves, fuels, business models, and country contexts based on priority areas of the RBF agenda. This includes the incorporation of any carbon credits that may be applied.
- To collect critical cost and revenue data from market stakeholders across a variety of business models and contexts, through a mix of interviews and surveys in order to test the usability of the unit economics framework and methodology for calculating the unit economics for each archetype
- To capture data and findings in a well-structured report and accompanying PowerPoint deck and to conduct a webinar for CCA staff on key findings. The firm should also develop the unit economics framework and methodology into an easy-to-use tool for use by market stakeholders. The firm may also be asked to present at the 2022 Clean Cooking Forum in Accra, Ghana, which will be held from October 11-13.
Scope of Work and Deliverables
To produce unit economics for a representative group of stoves, fuels, business models, and country contexts based on priority areas of the RBF agenda.
Activity 1: Develop framework and methodology for calculating unit economics
- Work with CCA’s RBFA team to identify business models and country contexts to prioritize for analysis
- Develop framework and identify necessary data to collect from market stakeholders.
- Validate approach with RBFA team and select group of advisors
- Deliverable: Unit Economics Framework for each selected archetype; unit economics calculation tool to promote alongside findings
Activity 2: Data Collection
- Design interview and survey materials for collection of cost and revenue data
- Establish data protection and anonymization plan
- Develop list of stakeholders to reach out to in partnership with RBFA team
- Launch outreach and collection process
- Deliverable: Survey and interview materials and stakeholder outreach list
Activity 3: Analysis and Report Development
- Synthesize data from surveys and interviews into agreed framework
- Review key findings with RBFA team and agree on report structure
- Gather key findings into a well-structured report and accompanying PowerPoint presentation
- Present findings at internal webinar and at the 2022 Clean Cooking Forum
- Deliverable: Well-written report on research findings and accompanying PowerPoint; completed framework and analysis
Project Period of Performance
This assignment will be performed between July – November 2022. A preliminary presentation of the methodology and research findings must be ready for presentation at the Clean Cooking Forum, which will take place from October 11-13 in Accra, Ghana. All final deliverables must be submitted by November 14th, 2022 validated by inputs generated at the Clean Cooking Forum.
Firms should have the following experience:
- Understanding of the clean cooking sector and its accompanying business models
- Understanding of results-based financing and other innovative financing mechanisms
- Experience developing unit economic analysis and other economic studies in the clean cooking and/or energy sector
- Existing relationships with sector stakeholders, including companies, investors, and development partners a plus
- Experience authoring innovative and strategic reports for clean cooking and/or energy sector
|07/12/2022||Proposal review and scoring|
|07/13/2022||Consultant(s) selected and notified via email|
|08/04/2022||Kickoff meeting with selected Consultant(s)|
A detailed budget in US Dollars must be submitted with the proposal. Budget should include both pre-tax and net of tax values. The budget should include direct costs (Personnel, Fringe Benefits, Travel, Sub-Agreements, Equipment, Supplies, etc.), as well as indirect costs (overhead). For indirect costs, please indicate a list of expenses covered by the indirect rate. For all direct cost, please include assumptions that were made to arrive at line-item costs (e.g. 2 trips @ $1,500/trip = $3,000 or 20 staff hours @ $40/hour = $800).
If a bid has a mathematical discrepancy, the Alliance may correct the discrepancy and notify the Consultant of the adjustment. In such circumstances, the Consultant may choose to withdraw their bid.
The budget should not exceed 100,000 USD.
The Clean Cooking Alliance will review all written proposals and may request a phone or in-person interview and/or updated submission to address questions or provide clarification. CCA will use the following criteria in the evaluation.
|Evaluation criteria||Score (1-5)|
|Approach: e.g the analytical framework and methodology answering the project’s key questions and deliverables|
|Subject matter expertise: e.g experience working with emerging markets and the field of global development|
|Project management: e.g achievable action plan that will deliver the project on time and on budget|
|Capabilities and experience: e.g demonstrated firm experience with similar projects|
|Value: e.g the proposed pricing is within budget|
|Value for money: the proposed pricing demonstrates a competitive price and good value for the money|
Intent and Disclaimer
This RFP is made with the intent to identify a Consultant to deliver results as described in this RFP. UNF/the Clean Cooking Alliance will rely on the Consultant’s representations to be truthful and as described. The Clean Cooking Alliance assumes it can be confident in the Consultant’s ability to deliver the product(s) and/or service(s) proposed in response to this RFP.
If the Clean Cooking Alliance amends the RFP, copies of any such amendments will be sent to all respondents to the proposal.
Proposal Guidelines and Requirements
- This RFP is open to multiple partners and is a competitive process.
- Proposals received after 11:59pm ET on July 10, 2022, will not be considered.
- The price provided should be in US dollars, and should contain both pre-tax and net of tax values. If the process excludes certain fees or charges, the applicant must provide a detailed list of excluded fees with a complete explanation of the nature of those fees.
- CCA prefers a single point of contact who manages deliverables. If the execution of work to be performed by the Consultant requires the hiring of sub-contractors, the Consultant must clearly state this in the proposal. Sub-contractors must be identified and the work they will perform must be defined. Subcontractors are subject to vetting and approval of UNF/CCA.
- CCA will not refuse a proposal based upon the use of subcontractors; however, we retain the right to refuse the sub-contractors you have selected.
- Provisions of this RFP and the contents of the successful responses are considered available for inclusion in final contractual obligations.
Format for Proposals
Proposals must include applicant signature as well as a signed declaration form. Proposals must include the full legal name of applicant, as well as legal formation and ownership structure (e.g. incorporation certification, tax status and ID, etc.).
Contracting and Compliance
CCA will negotiate contract terms upon selection. A copy of the contract terms and conditions will be provided upon selection. All contracts are subject to review by the UN Foundation’s Business Services and Budget Reporting team. The project will start upon the complete execution of the contract. The contract will outline terms and conditions, scope, budget, and applicable flow down terms. Selected recipient(s) must comply with CCA, United Nations Foundation, and funder compliance requirements. The selected recipient(s) must also undergo detailed legal, financial, and commercial due diligence.
The Consultant understands that the Clean Cooking Alliance has chosen to solicit an RFP for consulting services, and that the Consultant’s response does not guarantee that the Clean Cooking Alliance will enter into a new contract with the Consultant or continue any current contract(s) with the Consultant.
The Consultant agrees that Clean Cooking Alliance may, at its sole discretion:
- Amend or cancel the RFP, in whole or in part, at any time
- Extend the deadline for submitting responses
- Determine whether a response does or does not substantially comply with the requirements of the RFP
- Waive any minor irregularity, informality or nonconformance with the provisions or procedures of the RFP
- Negotiate with all Consultants UNF deems acceptable
- Issue multiple awards
- Photocopy the responses for evaluation/review
This RFP is not an offer to contract. The Clean Cooking Alliance assumes no responsibility for Consultant’s cost to respond to this RFP. All responses become the property of the Clean Cooking Alliance.
The Consultant, by submitting a response to this RFP, waives all right to protest or seek any legal remedies whatsoever regarding any aspect of this RFP.
The Consultant represents that it has responded to the RFP with complete honesty and accuracy. If facts provided in the Consultant’s response change, the Consultant agrees to supplement its response in writing with any deletions, additions, or changes within ten (10) days of the changes. The Consultant will do this, as necessary, throughout the selection process.
The Consultant understands it may receive proprietary and confidential information from the Clean Cooking Alliance during the RFP process (“Confidential Information”). The Consultant and the Alliance agree to not use Confidential Information for any purpose other than the Consultant’s participation in the RFP process, and to not reveal Confidential Information directly or indirectly to any other person, entity, or organization without the prior written consent of the other party. The Consultant and CCA further agree to exercise all reasonable precautions to maintain the proprietary and confidential nature of Confidential Information where it can best demonstrate its value and capacity to delivery ecosystem-wide, meaningful value.
Grounds for Exclusion
Material misrepresentations, including omissions, may disqualify the Consultant from a contract award.
Submissions will be rejected in the Clean Cooking Alliance’s sole discretion if it finds that the Consultant has engaged in any illegal or corrupt practices in connection with the award.
The Consultant will be excluded from participation for the reasons below. By submitting a proposal in response to the RFP, the Consultant confirms that none of the below circumstances apply:
- The Consultant is bankrupt or being wound up, is having their affairs administered by the courts, has entered into an arrangement with creditors, has suspended business activities, is subject of proceedings concerning those matters, or is in any analogous situation arising from a similar procedure provided for in national legislation or regulations.
- The Consultant or persons having powers of representation, decision-making or control over them have been convicted of an offence concerning their professional conduct by a final judgment.
- The Consultant has been found guilty of grave professional misconduct; proven by any means which CCA can justify.
- The Consultant has not fulfilled obligations relating to the payment of social security contributions or taxes in accordance with the legal provisions of the country in which they are established, or within the United States of America, or those of the country where the contract is to be performed.
- The Consultant or persons having powers of representation, decision-making or control over them have been convicted for fraud, corruption, involvement in a criminal organization or money laundering by a final judgment.
- The Consultant makes use of child labor or forced labor and/or practice discrimination, and/or do not respect the right to freedom of association and the right to organize and engage in collective bargaining pursuant to the core conventions of the International Labour Organization (ILO).
Principal Point of Contact
Lindsay Umalla is the primary point of contact for this assignment. Please reach out to firstname.lastname@example.org email address with any questions.
Please submit any questions and/or proposal materials related to the Request for Proposals to email@example.com with the subject line “Proposals for Unit Economics Framework and Analysis.”
The deadline for submission is July 10, 2022, at 11:59pm ET.