With support from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, TechnoServe is undertaking a major initiative to help small-scale coffee farmers in East Africa double their incomes. TechnoServe business advisors focus their efforts in four areas: agronomy and training to provide farmers with practical knowledge that will increase yields; installation of wet mills to produce washed coffee; training in business management and finances; and the establishment of market linkages between growers, exporters and roasters.
In 2010, the IFC announced the opening of a loan guarantee facility in Ethiopia to support TechnoServe’s Coffee Initiative. The guarantee will allow Ethiopia’s Nib International Bank S.C. to provide up to $30 million in loans to coffee farmer cooperatives by the year 2013, ultimately benefitting thousands of farmers. The loans will provide much-needed capital for investment in new equipment and are expected to increase farmer income by as much as 30 percent.