Experiences of SME business development


The Agro Business Centre (ABC) stimulated the development of small and medium-sized enterprises (SME) with high growth potential by supporting them on management consulting, access to funding, but also providing technical and organisational supports, as well as support on their marketing, communication and market research.

968 SME were supported by the ABC team of SNV Benin, amongst them Jardin des Oliviers and NYC FIFA.

The ‘ONG Jardin des Oliviers’ is a farm school that aims to train, produce, support and assist young people, associations and groups in the sustainable agriculture sector. Located in the commune of Avrankou, the support and follow-up of the ABC project team allowed this company in difficulty to:

  • Get a loan of 25 million FCFA (around €38,000) refundable in 18 monthly payments with a grace period of 6 months

  • Build a building with a capacity of 2,000 laying hens

  • Provide Benin's largest supermarket with fish as well as chicken and quail eggs

  • Increase its client portfolio

  • Increase monthly turnover from 2 to 3.5 million FCFA (from €3,00 to €5,300), a 84% growth rate

  • Employ 35 people, including 19 women, compared to 28 of whom 12 women at the start of the project intervention

  • Respect all credit repayment deadlines

The young Director, Emmanuel Houmasse, is proud to have achieved his ambition and glad that his company is doing better today, 'the funding has allowed us to become better known through our production and this has created jobs'. His parents who dissuaded him from taking up the family business are stunned by the results and performances; his brothers who doubted his success now would like to work in the company.


Supported by her husband, Charlotte Clémence Noulekoun started an agri-business in 2002, NYC FIFA. Specialising in the processing of palm kernel into oil and derivatives, this company was in desperate need of working capital to build up a sufficient stock of raw materials and to meet current expenses. Unable to meet the demand of its customers in the local, national and sub-regional market, the promoter asked for the support of the ABC project to accompany her in the search for financing and the follow-up of her project. This allowed her to:

  • Obtain 8 million FCFA (€12,200) of repayable credit in 17 monthly installments without delay;

  • Increase monthly turnover from 6 to 8 million FCFA (€9,000 to 12,200), representing a 32% increase;

  • Employ 28 people in total, versus 17 before;

  • Increase the number of women employed from 4 to 9;

  • Respect the repayment dates of her credit.

Although the interest rates applied and the delays of deferred can be even more adapted, Charlotte is very happy that she was able to respect her commitments and intends now to consolidate her relations with the bank, which continues to trust her.