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(ToR)-Consultancy to Understand the Small and Micro Enterprise (SME) Support Ecosystem in the Western Province of Rwanda

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SPARK develops higher education and entrepreneurship to empower young, ambitious people to lead their fragile and conflict-affected societies into prosperity.

Terms of Reference: Consultancy to Understand the Small and Micro Enterprise (SME) Support Ecosystem in the Western Province of Rwanda

Small and Micro Enterprises (SMEs) remain a vital engine for the growth of the Rwandan economy. These enterprises drive growth and innovation and create job opportunities especially for the youth who make up about 46% of the current working age population (Rwanda Labor Force Survey, 2020) in the country. The SME’s growth is however constrained by factors such as poor management, lack of training, lack of access to finance, lack of business development services, information asymmetry, poor infrastructure among other factors. The negative effect of the Covid-19 disease has been felt most deeply by the SME’s and therefore efforts to support their survival and building resilience is needed. This will help stem the negative economic systemic impact brought about by the pandemic.

Urbanization will be a key driver for the achievement of the national goal of creating 1.5 million productive jobs by 2024. The growth of secondary cities is a constituent plan of the strategy to have 35% of Rwandans living in urban areas by 2024. The role of SME’s in supporting growth of jobs and incomes in cities outside of Kigali will continue to be important.

Stichting SPARK (hereby referred to as SPARK) promotes higher (vocational) education and entrepreneurship in the countries it operates and works largely with Small and Micro Enterprises in the Sub Saharan Africa (SSA) region  https://spark.ngo/sub-saharan-africa/.

SPARK wishes to hire a consulting firm to carry out a study to understand the Small and Micro Enterprise (SME) support ecosystem in the Western Province of Rwanda, what initiatives to prioritise and what market actors and businesses to work with.  Through the application of a Market System Development (MSD) approach SPARK aims at providing Covid-19 Recovery support to transformative SME’s in the Western Province of Rwanda by addressing constraints in capacity building, access to finance and building resilience. SPARK is already conducting an assessment of Microfinance Institutions in the Western Province that can support in the provision of financial services to selected SME’s. The two studies will therefore shape our engagement both on the supply and demand side.

The Objective of the Consultancy

SPARK therefore seeks to implement a program that will unlock systemic constraints to the survival and growth of SME’s while creating job opportunities for youth.

This consultancy will therefore:

a. Identify key actors in enterprise development in the Western Province, their current priority initiatives and how SPARK can leverage this. 
b. Identify key sectors to engage in and existing market players that can provide sustainable market based solutions to constraints that would be holding back industry competitiveness and increased benefits to SME’s.
c. The above objectives a). and b). should also employ a youth entrepreneurship and job creation lens 
d. Identify the existing COVID-19 related support programs to SME’s 
e. Support in the selection of sectors from which to draw the 500 targeted SME’s 
f.  Development of a selection criteria for transformative enterprises
g. Review and revise the current Theory of Change and Results Framework to ensure that intended outcomes are achieved.

Eligibility of the firm:

a. The firm must have practical experience in carrying out scoping and market studies related to SME or Enterprise Development in Rwanda and the East Africa region
b. The firm must demonstrate understanding of the Market System Development Approach for Enterprise Development
c. The selected firm must demonstrate expertise in past evaluation of MSD programs. Reference to at least two programs will be required. 
d. Experience in carrying out research, convening and facilitating discussions that influence policy is required. 
e. Practical experience working in the Rwandan market is a must 

Expected Deliverables

a. Report on the requirements outlined under the Objectives of the Assignment. 
b. Selection criteria for transformative enterprises that SPARK can engage with 
c.  A revised Theory of Change and Results Framework 
d.  A report in Word and Summary Presentation

Proposal Evaluation

The bidding firm should provide:

a.  A Technical Proposal clearly showing the methodology and tools that will be applied together with a detailed Work Plan
b.  A Financial proposal in United States Dollars (USD) should be provided with clear professional fees indicated for the personnel and other costs. 

The consultant should be aware of current restrictions imposed in Rwanda in an effort to contain the Covid-19 pandemic.

 Evaluation Criteria

The following criteria will be applied in selecting the consulting firm:

Technical Evaluation

% Score

The firm must have practical experience in carrying out scoping and market studies related to SME or enterprise development in the East Africa region especially Rwanda

15

Demonstrated expertise in past evaluation of at least two MSD programs

15

Experience in carrying out research, convening and facilitating discussions that influence policy is required.

15

Technical strength of the proposed team

15

 

 

Methodology and Work Plan

 

Quality of the approach presented in line with the ToR

5

Quality of the work plan and proposed management of the project

5

Technical Evaluation Score

70

Financial Evaluation Score

30

 Quotations and Submission

Interested firms should submit their proposals (both technical and financial) not later 3rd of August 2021 at 5:00 pm on e-mail addressed to rwanda@spark-online.org with a clear Subject Line: Consultancy to Understand the Small and Micro Enterprise (SME) Support Ecosystem in the Western Province of Rwanda

Only successful bidders will be notified.