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Win up to USD 350,000 with The Swiss Re Foundation Entrepreneurs for Resilience Award

Our 2020 award will focus on innovative solutions for climate-smart agriculture[i], including crop and livestock production as well as aquaculture. We’re looking for business-minded organisations that provide tools, technologies and approaches enabling smallholder and/or medium scale farmers in low-income communities to carry out agricultural activities in a way that is both environmentally sustainable and socially beneficial.

Opportunity Focus Areas:

  • Entrepreneurship.
  • Innovation.
  • Management.
  • Finance.

Required Languages


Eligible Countries


Program Period

  • Application deadline: 16 Sep 2019.
  • Selection of the top 12 candidates: 7 Nov 2019.
  • Oral interviews: 8 Nov 2019 – 10 Jan 2020.
  • Selection of top 6 candidates: 30 Jan 2020.
  • On-Site due diligence: 31 Jan -03 Apr 2020.
  • Selection of 3 finalists: 23 Apr 2020.
  • Award ceremony (tbc):  May/June 2020.

Eligibility Requirements (Criteria)

We encourage enterprises that fit the above-described scope and meet the following criteria to apply:

    • Level of maturity:
      Are established as formal start-ups, growing and on a clear path to full or partial financial sustainability (eg if only some operations are commercially based) but still dependent on grants (or other support) to improve their business model and/or reach full financial sustainability
    • Innovation and technology focus:
      Leverage technology or an innovation in product or service delivery to deliver value to smallholder and/or medium scale farmers in low-income countries.
  • Mission and purpose:
    Have a strong social purpose while using commercial mechanisms to achieve sustainability and scale.
  • Target group:
    Serve smallholder and/or medium scale farmers involved in crop production, livestock production, and/or aquaculture. Low-income and resource-constrained farmers should be a clear focus and priority and/or represent more than 30% of people served. Candidates should have a deep understanding of their end users’ specific circumstances and address the social and climate-related challenges they face.
  • Geography:
    Ideally, operate in low-income communities.
  • Candidates should have the following team members available to participate at the following stages:

The founder(s), for a one- to two-hour interview between mid-November 2019 and mid-January of 2020 (top 12 candidates).

The management, to receive representatives of the Swiss Re Foundation for two days of on-site due diligence between February and early April 2020 (top 6 candidates).

At least one founder, for coaching sessions between April and May 2020 to prepare a pitch for the face-to-face event and award ceremony (3 finalists).

The team, to collaborate with the Swiss Re Foundation on preparing a brief video about the enterprise in the second half of April 2020 (3 finalists); the video must be ready no later than three weeks before the award ceremony.

At least one founder, to make an in-person pitch for the enterprise in May/June 2020 (tbc).

  • Ventures that address one or more of the following areas are welcome to apply: Climate mitigation and resource conservation; climate adaptation and risk management; increased productivity and food security; improved revenue opportunities for farmers; financial inclusion of farmers. A more detailed description of the approaches targeted by the award can be found in the appendix “Scope“.

Opportunity Cost


  • The total prize money of USD 700,000 is divided among the winner (which receives up to USD 350,000) and the two runners-up.
  • Finalists will be contacted individually to arrange travel and accommodation (the costs of which will be defrayed by the Foundation).

How to Apply

First Step: Complete the online questionnaire.

Second Step: Submit the questionaire

Apply Now

More Details

Know more about this opportunity:

Official Website

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