Webinar series Financing Smallholder Agriculture for Rural Transformation (FINSMART) –3. Financial Services to Small and medium agro-enterprises (SMAEs)

Thursday, November 26, 2020

Time:  9.00 am CET/3.00 pm Bangkok time, Duration: 75 min


The success of doing business with SMAEs lies in understanding the whole value chain of agriculture, target markets, and making financing judgement based on less than perfect information.

Hosted by  Asia and Pacific Rural and Agricultural Credit Association (APRACA), CABFIN Partnership and  FAO Technical Network on Sustainable Value Chains Development and Finance, in collaboration with  The Chinese Academy for Financial Inclusion (CAFI), the webinar will provide ground level examples on the good practices which will allow the participants to understand the nuances of strong enterprises and to appreciate the innovations in financial delivery systems and risks mitigations including promoters risk and asymmetry in information in this sub-sector lending space.

The webinar will bring together selected actors in the agri-SME finance space in the Asia-Pacific region to discuss practical experiences, innovations and good practices related to: (i) strengthening agri-SMEs towards bankability and investor-readiness position; (ii) pathways for facilitating finance through the formal financial system; (iii) innovative financial instruments that could be leveraged; (iv) new business models in agri-value chain paving the way for new transformative models in agri-SME financing. Though the focus will be on the Asia-Pacific region, sharing experiences from outside the region will add value and enrich the discussions.

The expected outcome of the webinar series is to (a) contribute and highlights the issues and challenges of the region to the ongoing global dialogue and (b) to support the financial institutions, national governments in the region to undertake the right strategies and measures to deal with the on-going pandemic and its aftershock.

Areas to be covered during the dis-cussions/interactions:

·Developing and facilitating finance to SMAEs’ through banking system in the Asia-Pacific region.
·Risk sharing and reduction through innovations in SMAE financing using cash flow methods and non-traditional collateral, guarantees and hedging.

The webinar will discuss:

  • What are the main issues and challenges that Agri-SMEs are posing both under pre and post COVID-19 presents and the financing business affected?
  • How are financial institutions are supporting Agri-SMEs in the face of the COVID-19 fallout.
  • How can innovative financial instruments/products/services (including digital financial services) could be leveraged to support Agri-SMEs in times of crisis?
  • How are the new business models in agri-value chain and market forces paving the way for new transformative models in Agri-SME financing?



This webinar will feature active players in the Agri-SME finance and will discuss their experiences on the current challenges and successes in scaling up finance for SMAEs, and opportunities for innovations in the time of COVID-19. The list of the distinguished speakers are:


1.Ms. Marise Blom – Chief Operating Officer, SCOPEinsight, Utrecht, Netherlands

Marise brings over 30 years of diverse and robust experience with a wide array of businesses from large multinationals to start-ups to Funds. For the past seven years, has been leading the high performing, professional team at SCOPEinsight to excel.  Prior to working with SCOPEinsight, she was COO/CFO to an emerging market investment fund, managing director of a start-up IT company, and executive director of a financial communications firm. All these experiences prove to be relevant in her quest to transform the agricultural sector in emerging markets through the professionalization of agribusinesses. Marise holds an MSc Economics degree from Groningen University in the Netherlands.

2.Mr. Tim Liu – Executive Director and Senior Research Fellow, Chinese Academy for Financial Inclusion (CAFI), China

Tim has over a decade of experience in microfinance, financial inclusion and inclusive growth. Prior to CAFI, he worked at ACCION International as a lead specialist, and a core member of a microfinance training program funded by World Bank Institute and Asia Development Bank Institute in 2008-2014, and also served as a member of the Expert Committee for China Banking Association (Citi Group) Micro-Entrepreneurship Award 2011-2015. Tim has rich experience of working in provincial government and later employed at Sumitomo Corporation South China as a regional head. In 2017, Tim was granted a scholarship by Harvard Business School for Strategic Leadership Program of Financial Inclusion.


3.Mr. Chab Kongmon, Senior Vice President, Bank for Agriculture and Agriculture Cooperatives (BAAC), Thailand

Chab is the Senior Vice President of Deposit Department, Bank for Agriculture and Agricultural Cooperatives (BAAC). BAAC is the Lead Bank to provide agriculture and Small and Medium Agro-Enterprises (SMAEs) financing in Thailand. Before getting into the present position he serves BAAC for about 30 years in different capacity from, Senior Vice President of Branch Administration Department Central Region, Senior Vice President of Policy and Strategy Department, Senior Vice President of Loan Department, Senior Vice President of Entrepreneur and Institution Credit Department. During his tenure in the executive position, he has introduces many innovative ideas regarding to financial services to SMAEs


The webinar will be moderated by: Dr. Prasun Kumar Das, Secretary General, Asia-Pacific Rural and Agriculture Credit Association (APRACA), Bangkok, Thailand.

Prasun is currently leading the Asia-Pacific Rural and Agricultural Credit Association (APRACA) as its Secretary General based out of Bangkok, Thailand. Prior to this assignment he worked as the Project Manager of IFAD regional grant project, Rural Finance specialist in FAO, Associate Professor (Agribusiness), Research Director in DFID regional grant project. He also held Senior position in public sector commercial bank and consultant advisor/expert on rural and agricultural development to the Government of India. Prasun holds a Doctoral Degree in Agricultural Sciences and MBA with specialization in Financial Management and is a certified professional in banking and finance.