RFI: Eligible Enterprises Operating in Ghana and Nigeria (CCA)
COOKING INDUSTRY CATALYST – VENTURE CATALYST
Request for Information (RFI) – Eligible Enterprises Operating in Ghana and Nigeria
ABOUT THE CLEAN COOKING ALLIANCE
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 environment, empowering women, and helping consumers save time and money.
COOKING INDUSTRY CATALYST OVERVIEW
Launched in 2020, the Cooking Industry Catalyst (“CIC”) is a global industry development program being managed by the Clean Cooking Alliance (CCA). Its aim is to demonstrate that financial returns and impact can be achieved through technological and business model innovation, and that, combined with a conducive enabling environment and consumer demand, these impacts and financial returns can be achieved at scale. The program reflects years of lessons learned by companies, investors, governments, and CCA itself.
CIC is delivering a range of company-, consumer-, and ecosystem-level interventions to catalyze investment into scalable businesses through three components:
- CIC-Venture Catalyst: Venture-level engagements to support companies to increase their capacity to raise capital, expand and grow their operations, and develop or improve their products.
- CIC-Market Catalyst: Ecosystem-level engagements, including financing vehicles and structures; advice for investors, policymakers, and other players; sector promotion and convening through CCA- or 3rd party-hosted events; market intelligence and analytical tools; and other public goods or semi-public resources.
- CIC-Demand Catalyst: Consumer-focused awareness and demand creation initiatives to promote the purchase and usage of clean cooking technologies in specific geographic markets.
CIC-VENTURE REQUEST FOR INFORMATION
This RFI is to solicit information from eligible companies in Ghana and/or Nigeria interested in being qualified for future support under the CIC-Venture Catalyst program. This call is open to companies already operating or registered in these markets including joint ventures and/or partnerships with international players, and foreign companies with operations in these countries.
The CIC-Venture program has been designed to identify, select, and support companies with commercial, financially viable business models to deliver products with social and environmental impacts to underserved communities in developing countries. It aims to enable such businesses to accelerate their investment-readiness and the likelihood that they become successful champions of the still nascent clean cooking industry.
There are four primary criteria against which CCA will evaluate any information submitted, in order to short-list companies for due diligence.
- Business Model: The program seeks for-profit entities with business models to design, manufacture, sell, or finance cleaner and more efficient cooking solutions. Multi-product last-mile distributors, microfinance institutions, off-grid solar companies, and other players seeking to expand their consumer offering to include clean cooking solutions are welcome to submit information. Companies with models reliant on grants for long-term viability are unlikely to be selected.
- Organizational Maturity: The program seeks companies beyond the “proof-of-concept” stage. Companies should have a technology and business model, with revenues generated and a full-time management team and existing operations. However, highly innovative solutions still in development may be considered, either for the CIC-Venture Catalyst program or referral to partners with a focus on early-stage research and development.
- Product: Information will be accepted from any company delivering a high-impact solution through a scalable model, however, we will prioritize higher performance solutions per the ISO framework (ISO 19867-1:2018) for clean cookstoves and clean cooking solutions including biogas, ethanol, electricity, LPG, biomass pellets, briquettes, improved biomass stoves and other cooking solutions. We will prioritize solutions that are likely to achieve a minimum ISO Tier 3+ for efficiency and emissions (CO and PM2.5). The Venture Catalyst program will fund the costs of ISO testing for manufacturing companies who make to the final shortlist and meet the qualification criteria on other criteria. In this regard, all respondents should be willing to have their products tested under the ISO framework (where applicable) if selected into the program.
- Geographical Focus: Ghana and Nigeria. This is a follow-on RFI that is specifically aimed at expanding the Venture Catalyst portfolio in Ghana and Nigeria based on strategic considerations for the program. Only submissions from companies in these countries will be considered in this RFI. Future calls for other countries and regions will be release as the program continues.
CIC-VENTURE CATALYST SUPPORT
Companies that are ultimately selected, the first step of which is to submit information to this RFI, will be added to the portfolio of companies in the Venture Catalyst Program (please refer to Venture Catalyst web page to view current VC portfolio companies and examples of the types of projects that have been funded under the program) that formed the first cohort with the opportunity to access:
- Advisory support and grant funding: projects co-developed by the CCA Ventures team and companies may relate to a range of needs including, but not limited to: product development; impact monetization; sales; gender strategy; people and culture development, market entry and expansion pilots, feasibility studies, operational due diligence and investment readiness.
- Enhanced visibility and credibility with investors and sector decision-makers: companies selected into the program will comprise a cohort of innovative businesses that CCA will promote as sector pioneers in conferences, webinars, and other public fora, and in bilateral engagements with the investment community, donors, policymakers, and other decisionmakers. Participation in the program will be an important asset for all companies seeking to raise their profile and position for commercial investment.
NB: The CIC-Ventures program does not and will not make direct equity or debt investments in selected companies. Any submissions seeking direct investment from CCA will be disqualified.
CIC-VENTURE CATALYST RFI PROCESS AND TIMELINE
- December 20, 2021: RFI released and open for responses
- By January 31, 2022: RFI submissions are received.
- By February 15, 2022: Shortlisted companies are notified.
- February 2022: Due diligence (DD) is undertaken by CCA team.
- By March 1, 2022: Companies that successfully complete DD are admitted to the program.
- Thereafter, throughout the course of the program:
- Selected companies work with a relationship manager in the CCA Ventures team to co-create concept notes for projects that fill critical gaps which reflect company priorities.
- Concept notes are evaluated by a committee consisting of CCA management and external experts; modifications may be requested as appropriate.
- Approved concept notes are developed into full, costed proposals that are undertaken in collaboration with the company, CCA and, third party expert advisors (where required); project management responsibility is held by the CCA relationship manager and the company’s designated project manager.
- Upon conclusion of the project, a case study or other learning material may be developed to ensure visibility for the progress achieved by the company, and to ensure publicly relevant lessons learned are shared with sector participants to promote the sector and raise visibility on innovation.
- Future projects may be developed and approved depending on the success of the first project. Multiple consecutive projects are possible with each CIC-Venture portfolio company.
Portfolio companies can remain in the program without a specific end date, depending on the value perceived by the company and CCA’s analysis of its further requirements. The company’s participation will be reviewed by CCA and company on a semi-annual basis. The CIC-Venture Catalyst selection process and this RFI will be reposted on a periodic basis to allow for new companies, including new market entrants and companies exhibiting demonstrable progress, to be considered or re-considered for admission.
The RFI phase of the CIC-Ventures selection process will be open from December 20, 2021 and submissions are due by January 31, 2022 at 6:00pm EDT. Applicants are asked to submit the following relevant company informational materials already prepared, but specifically at least the following:
- Company Information: Pitch deck, and/or management presentation, and/or business plan that clearly articulates the business model and the company’s alignment to the clean cooking sector value chain.
- Financials: Recent historical financial statements (audited if available) and/or management accounts and/or financial projections that provide an overview of the business’ financial position if it is a going concern, or provide a basis on which the viability of the business model can be assessed.
- Indications of required support under the VC program: A cover letter from the company’s founder(s)/management indicating some initial ideas around the support that the company requires aligned to the information provided in the CIC-Venture Catalyst Support Section of this RFI.
Applicants should submit their applications online using the Application Portal. Potential applicants that meet the eligibility criteria are welcome to send any queries regarding their application submission to firstname.lastname@example.org.
INTENT AND DISCLAIMER
Applicants agree that CCA may, in its sole discretion:
- Amend or cancel the RFI, 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 RFI
- Waive any minor irregularity, informality or nonconformance with the provisions or procedures of the RFI
- Negotiate with all Consultants that UNF deems acceptable
- Issue multiple awards
- Photocopy the responses for evaluation/review.
- This RFI is not an offer to contract. Alliance assumes no responsibility for Applicant’s cost to respond to this RFI.
All responses become the property of CCA. Applicants, by submitting a response to this RFI, waive all right to protest or seek any legal remedies whatsoever regarding any aspect of this RFI. Applicants represent that they have responded to the RFI with complete honesty and accuracy. If facts provided in the Applicants’ response change, the Applicants agree to supplement their responses in writing with any deletions, additions, or changes within ten (10) days of the changes. applicants will do this, as necessary, throughout the selection process. Applicants understand that any material misrepresentation, including omissions, may disqualify it from consideration for selection. Applicants understand they may receive proprietary and confidential information from CCA during the RFI process (“Confidential Information”). Applicants agree to not use Confidential Information for any purpose other than its participation in the RFI process and to not reveal Confidential Information directly or indirectly to any other person, entity, or organization without the prior written consent of CCA. Applicants 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. This RFI is made with the intent to identify Applicants as described. CCA will rely on the applicant’s representations to be truthful and as described. If CCA amends the RFI, copies of any such amendments will be sent to all respondents to the proposal.