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Agribusiness Specialist

Agribusiness Specialist


NCBA CLUSA is currently seeking three qualified candidates for the position of Agribusiness Specialist for an upcoming program in Malawi. S/he will lead a systematic identification and selection of Producer Organizations (POs) that will participate in an incubation process and the development of Productive Alliance (PA) Strategies. S/he will be experienced in supporting the commercialization of agriculture through farmer producer groups at the Primary level and Secondary/Marketing Cooperative level. S/he will have specialized skills in working with and understanding agribusiness/agro-processors’ sourcing needs and successfully helping POs build commercial relationships with them, including the formation of purchase agreements. This program will emphasize a Learning and Adapting approach. The candidate should be knowledgeable in integrating smallholder farmers into value chains and market development indicators, data collection, and M&E and supporting a learning agenda, in addition to being an experienced trainer and agribusiness specialist. The positions will be based in rural areas within the the South, Central and Northern regions..



  • Lead development and implementation of Productive Alliance (PA) Strategies – business clusters including POs, input suppliers, buyers, and financial institutions – to guide the program’s efforts in PO capacity building;
  • Hosting workshops including PO members, Emerging Farmers, government extension, input suppliers, agribusinesses, and other private sector actors to identify common areas for potential investment to concentrate program activities;
  • Responsible for developing and managing PA cluster database of buyers, input suppliers, and other private sector partners;
  • Work closely with PO Specialists in supporting market assessments, meetings between POs and buyers/inputs suppliers, and PO Business Plans that directly address market needs (e.g. product standards, food safety, certification, aggregation, logistics, transport, and other value chain needs identified)
  • Work with program staff and Productive Alliance partners to identify PO “aggregation points” and areas for last mile infrastructure with high potential for trade, investment, joint ventures and commercialization of production;
  • Design and deliver “on-the-job” training to help POs negotiate commercial agreements with buyers and establish vertical alliances with networks of input suppliers and buyers that increase market access;
  • Review DAES and other donor and government program activities underway within village clusters that may support PA formation;
  • Facilitate PO/buyer meetings, match-making, and purchasing agreements using well-designed Business Plans and create the foundation for long-term commercial relationships;
  • Facilitate meetings and relationships between POs and retailers, seed companies, agrichemical companies, fertilizer companies, equipment, processor, machinery, irrigation, warehousing, post-harvest technology, engineering services, custom-hire and after sales service providers;
  • Facilitate co-investments by POs, agribusiness, and other investors/donors in joint business ventures, including processing facilities as well as producer organization equipment upgrades, mechanical shellers, aflatoxin solutions, improved storage, value addition, packaging, and product innovation, among other areas;
  • Work with the program staff on interpreting results and presenting findings, recommendations, and lessons learned for publications, quarterly reports, program events/workshops, and when responding to periodic NCBA CLUSA HQ or donor requests.


  • Bachelor’s Degree, with a minimum of 5 years’ experience with donor funded agriculture programs and 6 years’ experience in helping farmer organizations commercialize agriculture;
  • Demonstrated knowledge and skills in business cluster development and integrating smallholder farmers/POs into value chains;
  • Highly experienced in working with agribusinesses and agro-processors in Malawi and helping them identify and source production through farmer organizations/POs;
  • Experience in developing manuals, training and assisting POs forming commercial agreements (setting terms including volume, quality and payment) as well as building long-term commercial relationships with input suppliers and buyers;
  • Experience in helping POs design, negotiate, and execute Business Plans, resulting in commercialized production;
  • Experience in building networks of seed companies, agrichemical companies, fertilizer companies, equipment, processor, machinery, irrigation, warehousing, post-harvest technology, engineering services, custom-hire and after sales service providers;
  • Ability to work with people and willingness to support and train others;
  • Very high degree of social, political and cultural sensitivity;
  • Reporting writing and data analysis skills;
  • Strong written/oral communication;
  • Ability to travel to project sites nationwide.

NCBA CLUSA is an equal opportunity/affirmative action employer with a commitment to diversity.  All individuals, regardless of personal characteristics, are encouraged to apply; all qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, national origin, political affiliation, sexual orientation, gender identity, marital status, disability, protected veteran status, genetic information, age, and legally protected characteristics for non-merit factors. 



To apply, please email your CV and cover letter indicating the position(s) and region(s) to which you are applying.


Applications will be accepted through the closing date of Friday, 27th March, 2020. Interviews will be conducted on a rolling basis. Only those applicants who qualify will be contacted. No Phone Calls will be accepted. Women and minorities are encouraged to apply.

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