Agris receives €490,000 Technical Assistance facility from Proparco, through FISEA+, to boost climate resilience and social impact. 

The funding will boost the growth and resilience of Maris’ investments into food production, via Agris – a specialist horticultural group – and sustainable forestry in South Sudan via Equatoria Teak Company. It is a Technical Assistance (TA) facility under the FISEA+ initiative, dedicated to supporting micro, small and medium-sized enterprises in Africa. It is owned by Proparco’s parent company, the French Development Agency (AFD). 

“This funding will make our businesses more resilient and impactful,” says Charlie Tryon Maris CEO. “More resilient to economic and climate shocks and more socially impactful through training opportunities and greater inclusion of women into our workforces.


The facility will fund projects that enable us to scale our companies across East Africa faster and with less risk, by building internal capacity, developing talent and leadership potential and measuring our impact better. It will open up new opportunities for local communities, for example with the installation of a coffee mill at Equatoria Tea Company, our sustainable forestry operation in South Sudan, where we are supporting local smallholders to grow high-quality, speciality coffee. The mill will facilitate in-country value addition giving smallholders access to international markets.”

The funding follows FISEA’s US$ 12 million investment into Maris’s diverse portfolio of climate-aligned business in 2022. 

“We are delighted to be able to support Maris in these strategic and exciting challenges,” says Manal Tabet, Deputy Head of Technical Assistance & Blending Unit (ATM) at Proparco. “Encouraging the agri-food sector in Africa to develop and strengthen its position in value chains while adopting practices that are in line with our impact objectives at the same time, such as including gender issues or better management of natural resources, aligns with our technical assistance goals as a development bank.”

Wellspring Development advisors assisted Agris to secure the TA funding under AFD’s Choose Africa initiative. Choose Africa, makes all the tools of the AFD Group (Agence française de développement and its private sector financing arm, PROPARCO)  available to African start-ups, microenterprises and MSMEs to finance and assist them at the various stages of their development, particularly through local partners supported by the Group.

For more information contact Yaron Cohen

About Maris

Maris is an investment holding company with more than 100m USD under management, across nine sub-Saharan African countries and five strategic divisions. Since 2009, Maris has started-up and built a portfolio of more than 20 SMEs across 11 countries in East and Southern Africa, supporting thousands of jobs. Women represent 40% of total employment, which qualifies Maris for the #2XChallenge, a global gender finance initiative.

More information can be found at:

About Proparco

Proparco, a subsidiary of Agence Française de Développement Group, has been working with the private sector for over 45 years for a more just and sustainable world. With an international network of 23 local offices, Proparco works closely with its partners to build sustainable solutions in response to environmental and social challenges in Africa, the Middle East, Asia and Latin America. Proparco benefits from sector-based expertise as well as a wide range of financial solutions tailored to the different stages of business development, notably thanks to its Digital Africa subsidiary, and its Propulse technical assistance offering designed to scale up the impacts and performance of its partners. Proparco’s new “Acting together for greater impact” Strategy 2023-2027 enables, strengthens and amplifies the different ways in which it works with its partners. To learn more: 

More information can be found at: and @Proparco LinkedIn

About FISEA+

In 2009, the AFD Group created the FISEA facility to support economic growth and the creation of start-ups and MSMEs on the African continent. As part of the Choose Africa initiative, FISEA+ was launched at the beginning of 2021. With an investment capacity of EUR 210 million and a technical assistance budget of EUR 21 million, this initiative invests in high-impact funds addressing four key strategic priorities: support for SMEs, the emergence of social businesses, the development of a sustainable private sector in fragile countries, and support for start-ups specialising in digital innovation.

FISEA+ Technical Assistance (TA) aims to provide expertise and know-how tailored to the needs of fund managers and MSMEs in their portfolio through three types of projects: “Responsibility”, “Performance” and “Impact”.

About Wellspring Development

Wellspring works with development funders, governments, investors, and agribusinesses to develop programmes, assess projects and investments, measure impact, and drive business environment reform. Their mission is to support our clients and partners to design and deliver market-led solutions to issues across agricultural value chains and contribute to development impact at scale. Over the past 14 years, they’ve helped facilitate over £600m of investment into agricultural and food businesses, research and market development projects alongside our partners. They advise private sector firms to attract more Technical Assistance (TA), grants and concessional finance, and to develop a pipeline of sustainable, inclusive agribusiness or forestry investments or strategies.

More information can be found at

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