What We Have Achieved

Since inception in 2012 to 31 March 2018, the ZADT CREATE Fund has managed to disburse a cumulative total of US$85.9 million . Financial Products through which this was processed included; Generic Working Capital and CAPEX, Climate Smart Agriculture, Risk Sharing products and Note Issuances. More than 200 agribusinesses have benefitted from the funding through 333 loans meaning that some borrowers accessed the fund more than once. 

Annual disbursements and placements since Inception in 2012 to 31 March 2018

There continues to be an inverse relationship between number of loans and average loan sizes. The number of loans issued annually has been steadily declining against an increase in average loan size. Disbursing banks seem to continue prioritizing bigger loans more as a strategy to manage costs and returns.

Cumulative disbursements from Inception in 2012 to 31 March 2018

Since inception to 31 March 2018, cumulative disbursements have increased significantly over the years. The greatest increase having been experienced in 2014 where an increase of about US$20 million was recorded.  The cumulative number of loans has been decreasing significantly as old clients have moved on and new borrowing entities have mainly accessed bigger loans.

Commodities supported through ZADT CREATE facility Since Inception to 31 March 2018

Table above presents a distribution of major value chains supported through loans disbursed by banks to value chain actors from inception in 2012 to 31 March 2018. More than 50% of the loans in this category fell within the livestock sector namely (beef, dairy, poultry, and stock feeds). Support to the dairy value chain still remains very insignificant both in terms of number of facilities and value. Only seven dairy facilities were supported through the banks. Significant support has also gone to funding of maize production, trading and processing in various communal areas of Zimbabwe.


Though support to the sugarcane ranked high in terms of loan amount, the number of smallholder farmer beneficiaries (plot holders) was not that high compared to other commodities which had even smaller values of loans. Sugarcane smallholder farmers cultivate larger pieces of land and the commodity is more capital intensive. It is also important to note that each sugarcane smallholder farmer is more of an SME in that each employs several people on both permanent and casual basis.

Smallholder farmers linked to funded intermediaries - Cumulative Since Inception to 31 December 2017

As far as the cumulative since inception position is concerned, as at 31 December 2017, a total of 420,643 smallholder farmers had been supported. These were made up of 408,957 benefitting through linkages with funded VCAs whilst 11,686 were accessing credit directly through MFIs. The cumulative figure includes both repeat and new smallholder farmers reached since inception to 31 December 2017.

Fund Impact on Smallholder Farmers- Highlights from the 2017 Longitudinal Sentinel Study

The Trust conducted a longitudinal study in 2017 to determine the impact of the Fund on smallholder farmers. The Sentinel Survey is an impact assessment conducted in order to quantify the effect of the Fund on farmers’ agricultural production, asset accumulation, income, food and nutritional security. The sampled farmers were from eight value chains supported through the Fund.


The study results revealed that the value chain financing facility accessed by agribusinesses and smallholder farmers through the selected financial institutions contributed to improving the welfare (livelihoods) and income of farmers. The CREATE Fund also improved smallholder farmer’s access to credit, particularly for women.

Women participation in value chains supported through funded VCAs

Female participation in the credit facility programs from different value chains. The results indicate that women were more dominant compared to their male counterparts. A total of 51.6% of the smallholder farmers that accessed the CREATE facility through funded agribusinesses were women. This resonates with the Sustainable Development Goal  (SDG 5) of promoting gender equality and women empowerment.


Women were less involved in tea (29%) and in sugarcane production (26.2%), indicating that women are not yet actively involved in these value chains, see Figure 6. As such there is need for programs and interventions which also empower women in these value chains so that they can also benefit from the from the high incomes. Sesame value chain was dominated by women (80.6%) with only about 20% males having borrowed. Sesame production is labour intensive and involves several conditions that make the crop less attractive to men e.g. exposure to birds which makes it require more attention and monitoring.

Distribution of districts where VCAs funded in 2017 were operating

The map shows districts where Value Chain Actors funded in 2017 were operating.  The distribution indicates that the Value Chain Actors borrowing from the CREATE Fund are operating in over 80% of rural districts in Zimbabwe. This shows that the Fund has reached out to a greater portion of smallholder farmers in Zimbabwe.

Distribution of commodities supported by Value Chain Actors funded in 2017