The AfDB and Phatisa Partnership
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A major initiative made possible by the Phatisa-Meridian partnership was the Productivity Improvement Program for Smallholders; instrumental in mobilizing the AAF’s TAF to provide funds and the necessary expertise to roll out the outgrowers' program in Malawi through Meridian’s existing network of retailers in the country. Farmers Worlds, part of the Meridian Group, has hired 60 salesmen/women termed ‘agronauts’ to operate out of Meridian’s (> 100) retail outlets and reach 12,000 farmers in the central and southern regions of Malawi. Phatisa is a sector-specific fund manager with committed investments from Sierra Leone in West Africa to Mauritius in East Africa. This reflects a total of nine portfolio companies across a diverse range of agri and food-related businesses. The African Development Bank (AfDB) has backed several initiatives to support their Feed Africa Strategy, such as Africa-based Phatisa, which invests in food and agri-related businesses in Africa that show strong growth potential.