Senior Business Advisor (SBA) – NORAD

at Technoserve
Location Based in SNNPR (Butajira) with 50% Regular travel within assigned duty station, Ethiopia
Date Posted November 8, 2021
Category Agriculture
Business Administration
Job Type Full-time
Currency ETB


I.                    About TechnoServe


TechnoServe is a leader in harnessing the power of the private sector to help people lift themselves out of poverty. A nonprofit organization operating in 29 countries, we work with hard working men and women in the developing world to build competitive farms, businesses, and industries. By linking people to information, capital, and markets, we have helped millions to create lasting prosperity for their families and communities. Our work is rooted in the idea that given the opportunity, hardworking men and women in even the poorest places can generate income, jobs and wealth for their families and communities. In East Africa, we operate in Ethiopia, Kenya, Rwanda, Tanzania, and Uganda.  Across the region, we implement a range of large-scale value chain interventions, agribusiness programs and entrepreneurship/economic empowerment projects. With more than four decades of proven results, we believe in the power of private enterprise to transform lives.


II.                  About the Project


TechnoServe and GreenPath propose an ambitious, three-year project to catalyze the growth of Ethiopia’s export sector through efficient, inclusive, and regenerative market systems with Ethiopian small-scale farmers. Through sustainable, smallholder-sourced high-value exports, Ethiopian small-scale farmers will access higher income generating opportunities and lucrative, premium export markets, contributing to more resilient and improved farming livelihoods, particularly for women and youth. We envision a climate-resilient and inclusive horticulture export sector that strengthens partnerships between small-scale farmers and export enterprises, allows small-scale farmers to produce high-value export crops with access to climate-smart irrigation technology, and responds to end-market consumer demand for regenerative grown products. Although small-scale farmers have the potential to supply growing global consumer demand for sustainable products, Ethiopia’s business climate excludes small-scale producers from meaningfully participating in export value chains even when this is central to the mission of an export enterprise due to limited incentives for commercial exporters to overcome the various framework impediments to smallholder sourcing. These include limited enterprise knowledge on successfully identifying and engaging small-scale farmers, limited small-scale farmer access to affordable irrigation, unregistered high-value export seeds only allowed for production on commercial farms, promotion of environmentally damaging conventional horticulture practices to smallholders, expensive and costly certifications that discourage smallholder expansion.

III.                Position Description


The Senior Business Advisor (SBA) will provide technical assistance on innovative rural finance mechanisms for irrigation technologies and targeted new crop registrations to reduce barriers to smallholder sourcing. SBA will coordinate and assist evidence-based solutions for climate-resilient, regenerative agricultural practices and lay the groundwork to meet growing consumer demand for smallholder-sourced. The SBA will identify and directly provide technical assistance to smallholder out grower farmers to grow regenerative grown products. Identifying appropriate farmers and geographies to increase the likelihood of farmer adoption and the development of mutually beneficial relationships between enterprises and farmers. The Senior Business Advisor will coach and train smallholder out grower framers, BA, Partners’ staffs.  Analyze entrepreneurial and irrigation production options.  The Senior Business Advisor will facilitate linkages to buyers, irrigation input providers, distributers, financial institutions and other key market actors as well as ensure ongoing learning, knowledge exchange and capacity building.


IV.                Duties and Responsibilities

ü  Organize smallholder irrigation farmers into out growers' groups

ü  Coordinate smallholder/out grower farmers in export crop production supply chains that are market-oriented and high-margin

ü  Provide technical support to irrigation smallholder out-grower farmers with export crop selection.

ü  Provide Agronomic and market technical support to established out grower groups

ü  Determining suitable geographies in collaboration with partners and organizing them.

ü  Assist farmers with the identification of efficient irrigation technologies and applications.

ü  Assist BAs with identification and mobilization of high-potential farmer on irrigated high value export crops

ü  Provide expertise advise on coordinating buyer-farmer relationships to create viable linkages to improve the business climate

ü  Collect data and assist with analysis on demos to support evidence-based horticultural seed registration, seed permissions, and licensing.

ü  Assist smallholder irrigation farmer on on-farm water management

ü  Support market-responsive crop registration, allowing small-scale farmers to grow new high-value export crops

ü  Assist smallholder outgrower to access climate-smart, water-efficient irrigation technology thru Greenpath and develop work modality.

ü  In collaboration with the market analyst, identify potential financial sources for outgrower smallholder farmers.



              Training and Coaching

ü  Assist Business Advisors(BAs) and Farmer Trainers(FT) in identifying market as well as business knowledge gaps in irrigation production;  

ü  Coach and give on-the-job support to outgrower farmers to build their capacity around on farm water management, and marketing

ü  Assist export oriented irrigation crop outgrower farmers to make choices on major irrigation crops to be cultivated and technologies applied;

ü  Support preparation of irrigation crop calendar and follow up its implementation;

ü  Advise on market oriented irrigation crop production including postharvest management;

ü  Lead formal training of Business Advisors, Development Agents (DAs), out grower farmers, irrigation cooperatives;

ü  Promote and support enhanced gender and youth mainstreaming;



               Facilitate relationships between market system actors

ü  Act as a link between export crop outgrower irrigation farmer, exporters, support service agencies and other market system actors;

ü  Facilitate linkages with financial lending institutions

ü  Assist irrigation agriculture input supply chain plan and distribution chain linkages;

ü  Observe full training to farmers

ü  Follow up training’s standard and quality, give feedback and coaching to BAs, and FTs

ü  Check attendance form, cross check with number of farmers seen as present. Ensure reported data is accurate.

ü  Check demo plot status, complete form and give feedback to BA& FTs

            Stakeholder Management

Under the guidance of the PM;

ü  Create a good working relationship with stakeholders;

ü  Holding meeting with respective stakeholders including GreenPath;

ü  Meet with BAs  and outgrower groups every week or as the condition may be;

ü  Supervise and support BAs and FTs to mobilize outgrowers at the Kebele level.



ü  Improved capacity of commercial exporters & accelerated process for increasing sourcing from smallholder farmers, with a particular focus on women

ü  Increased access to smallholder appropriate, climate-smart, water-efficient irrigation technologies by commercial exporters

ü  Business climate for smallholder permission to produce high-value, exportable crops & access to seeds improved

ü  Development of label & business collective for smallholder-grown, regenerative agricultural products & pathway to scale supported

ü  Provided all the necessary technical support to Out-grower schemes that required high-touch support with farmers, and export enterprises in the intervention areas,

ü  Assist other irrigated export crop market-related deliverables within the NORAD project activities, as needed

ü  Carry out ongoing market data collection and analysis;

ü  Assist the production or translation of training materials into appropriate regional languages;

ü  Develop and translate training materials to relevant regional languages under the guidance of the Market Analyst and Project Manager

ü  Other deliverables as assigned by PM


           Work planning, Reporting and Learning

ü  Under the guidance of PM and in consultation with M&E officer develop and maintain work plan,

ü  Assist documentation of progress, outcomes, challenges and lesson learned; for example, document outgrower production market success stories and best practices;

ü  Identify and share knowledge with key stakeholders and TNS team;

ü  Facilitate partners and external guests visiting respective target areas;

Job Requirements

ü  MSc/BSc Degree in: Agronomy, Horticulture/Crop Science, Business Administration, Agricultural Economics/Cooperative, Rural Development, Agricultural Extension, other irrigation and business-related studies (with minimum 3 years of experience for MSc and 5 years’ experience for BSc)

ü  Experience on outgrower farmer organization, Irrigation Water User Association management, Irrigation Cooperative organization;

ü  Ability to work according to a work plan and meet deadlines;

ü  Fluency in; English, Amharic, and one of SNNPR languages;

ü  Willingness and experience serving remote SNNPR woredas areas(Butajira);

ü  Ability and willingness to ride a motor bicycle (attach a renewed license);

ü  Knowledge on Gender responsive irrigation implementation tools and techniques



Applying Instructions

Qualified and interested applicants should Click here to apply for this position and submit a cover letter resume as a single document (either Word or PDF) by November 13,2021. Applications will be reviewed and considered as received/on a rolling basis. Please identify the position for which you are applying in the subject line. Only applicants meeting minimum qualifications will be contacted. Please note that we are not accepting CVs that are not sent through the indicated link.



       The position does have a duration of 18 months, with the possibility of an extension  

TechnoServe has the right to cancel this advertisement. Women are highly encouraged to apply


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