Our social impact

The land used by Phata to grow sugarcane has been contributed by 1,352 farmers who have formed the Phata Cooperative that uses a successful business model in the development of communities.
Lift in income
Coop members are guaranteed a minimum annual payment by Phata and the scheme will allow for annual distribution of dividends, as is already demonstrated in the phase 1.
Food security
With the inclusion of Phase 2, the food crops area has expanded to 77ha to grow beans, maize, vegetables and rice in addition to fish farming, orchard management and reforestation. Farmers will be provided with training and access to inputs.
The Coop finances several initiatives in local communities, notably a revolving credit facility for its members. Income uplift from dividends will allow new members to open new businesses in the region
Real lives
I’m one of many people in the nearby village, who are employed by the Phata co-operative to harvest sugar cane. In the past, if I was lucky, I would get seasonal work but even that depended on the rain. Crops are now grown on irrigated land and there is work year round. I have a steady income, which goes a long way to support my extended family.
"I'm a single mother of two. My pay helps take care of the kids' food, hospital and school needs and allows my mother to take care of the family."
The Challenges

Phata  is a sugarcane cooperative in the impoverished Shire Valley in Southern Malawi. AgDevCo has supported it since 2013 with funding for its first years, helping the cooperative improve its management and financial systems and raising capital. The success of this first phase lead Phata to start developing a proposal to replicate the scheme in a second phase. However despite its positive results and impact, the Coop is not able to attract medium term development instruments from local commercial banks, at a time where the sugar market worldwide experiences some difficulties.

Our Approach

AgDevCo decided to provide a larger share of the funding plan than for phase 1. Its two facilities will finance both fixed capital expenditures and working capital requirements. The scheme will benefit from a large grant from the EU and the structure, using Agricane ( as the manager of the program, will remain unchanged, having proved its strength. AgDevCo’s investment has been instrumental in increasing the impact of Phata among local communities, providing employment, income, food and access to credit for them. 

Our Impact
  •   Annual income uplift for 1,352 farmers who are developing from subsistence to sustainable farmers.

  •  Allocation of 77ha for local food crop production.

  •   Replication of a successful and innovative business model.

  • Coop members have invested their proceeds into businesses that benefit local communities.


Committed Investment
We believe we can make more impact by looking for new ways to tackle poverty in the regions where we work.
If you believe your business meets our investment criteria, we want to hear from you.
Contact us