About us & more

Business for Development
 purpose

At Business for Development our purpose is to help business achieve sustainable development for enhanced outcomes.

 

Our vision is to leave a legacy of sustainable businesses in the communities where we operate.

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woman holding a hen

Principles

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Innovative & Inclusive

Applying market-based solutions with measurable impact. Embracing all members of society, including our differences – from culture, gender, to ideology – encourages creative problem solving and innovation.

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Entrepreneurial & Sustainable

Challenging conventional wisdom, testing assumptions, bridging sectors, and embracing change to take measured risks and develop sustainable pathways to livelihoods.

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Genuine & Grounded

When it comes to engaging with clients, partners, and community members, authenticity and practicality is paramount in empowering generations to come.

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Empathetic & Compassionate

Seeking to understand the needs of everyone we work with. Seeing things from their perspective means designing and implementing projects suitable for their community.

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Open & Ethical

Remaining open-minded and curious when designing solutions to address systemic causes of poverty, while guided by our moral compass.

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Enabling Transformation

Transformation cannot be realised without execution. We work on the ground tenaciously, questioning the status quo and exploring the systemic changes needed to create new opportunities.

Principles in Action

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We strive to improve farmer LIVELIHOODS, RESILIENCE and FINANCIAL INDEPENDENCE… not just increase incomes.

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We develop PARTNERSHIP ECOSYSTEMS, including community, business, government, research, and public and private funders.

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We work in ASIA-PACIFIC, AFRICA, and AUSTRALIA and we need to understand the SYSTEMS impacting these regions.

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If we’re to achieve our VISION, we need to develop scale beyond individual projects.

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AG-TECH and a DATA-DRIVEN APPROACH are priority enablers for us to maximise our impact.

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Our primary lens is RURAL POVERTY; therefore, our primary industry is AGRICULTURE.

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We consider the ENTIRE VALUE CHAIN when reviewing options and apply an INCLUSIVE and COLLABORATIVE approach.

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We take an all-encompassing perspective with a focus on ECONOMIC, ENVIRONMENTAL, and SOCIAL impact.

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We are ACTION ORIENTED (because nothing happens in the absence of activity), EMPATHETIC and COMPASSIONATE.

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We use MARKET-DRIVEN approaches, implement sustainable business models, and have CLEAR EXIT STRATEGY to ensure lasting impact.

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We take time to UNDERSTAND THE CULTURE AND COMMUNITIES we work with. With humility, sincerity and without ego, we serve our stakeholders to solve rural poverty.

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We bring the voice of the community to life through STORYTELLING based on FACTS.

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Our IMPACT and INFLUENCE are determined by our PEOPLE and FINANCIAL resources.

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We design and implement programs, following our ENGAGEMENT MANAGEMENT APPROACH.

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We are RESULTS ORIENTED and ACCOUNTABLE for our actions. We apply the DO NO HARM doctrine.

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We implement MONITORING AND EVALUATION protocols to track sustainable impact in line with SDG and CORPORATE STANDARDS.

Our Evolution

Established to advocate for the Millennium Development Goals

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Began working in partnership with business

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Shifted from primarily government to private sector funding

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Secured our first implementation programs

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Name change to reflect the Sustainable development goals

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Expanded geographic reach

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Commenced our first digital enablement trial

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Continued scaling impact beyond COVID-19

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2007

Advocating

2010

Turning intentions into action

2014

Delivering programs and localising teams

2020 & beyond

Scaling for impact

2007

Established to advocate for the Millennium Development Goals with the support of World Vision and other Board members. Seed funding was provided by various organisations including the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade. B4D subsequently held Australia’s first Inclusive Business Summit in 2008, with over 150 delegates in attendance.

2009

Began working in partnership with business leaders, taking them in-country to meet communities and co-create community inclusive value chains. We also started undertaking feasibility studies designed to shift business models by achieving food security and agricultural development in smallholder farming communities.

2013

Shifted from primarily government to private sector funding, demonstrating sufficient belief in the community inclusive business model.

2014

Secured our first pilot/implementation programs in Kenya (Kwale Agribusiness Program) and Papua New Guinea (Wonderland Agristock Limited). Kwale Agribusiness Program subsequently secured a Business Partnership Platform grant (BPP) in 2016, which supports partnerships between the Australian Government (Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade) and inclusive businesses to create both development impact and sustainable commercial returns through core business.

2015

‘Business for Millennium Development’ became ‘Business for Development’ to reflect the introduction of the Sustainable Development Goals.

2017

Expanded our geographical reach with programs/project activity in Papua New Guinea, Kenya, India, Mozambique, Indonesia, the Philippines, Vietnam, and Thailand.

2019

Commenced our first digital enablement trial using an application to track the first mile of agricultural production (smallholder farmer to processor). Learnings from the trial and the pathways it unlocked, such as traceability and mobile learning, prompted us to explore digitally enabling all programs.

2021 onwards

Our investment in establishing a strong foundation with the right people (including in-country teams), systems, and processes paid off as COVID-19 tested the resilience of organisations worldwide. This enabled us to expand into South Africa. We have continued developing our portfolio of programs, adding the Mpumalanga Winter Wheat Pilot, Pacific Island Tuna project and Lihir Island Agribusiness in 2021 and 2022.

Advocating

B4D was established to advocate for the Millennium Development Goals with the support of World Vision and other Board members. Seed funding was provided by various organisations including Australia’s Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT).

Turning intentions into action

B4D continued advocating business models that are inclusive, gaining the interest of early adopters. We began working in partnership with several businesses, undertaking feasibility studies designed to shift business models by achieving food security and agriculture development in smallholder farming communities across Asia-Pacific and Africa.

Delivering programs and localising teams

Advocacy was embedded in our approach as program delivery intensified, with several feasibility studies progressing to execution – a critical transition point for programs.

Scaling for impact

The past few years have seen a shift in mindset from ‘startup’ to ‘scale’ as our programs matured. Investments have been made to ensure our organisation has a strong foundation of the right people, culture, systems and processes to support the next stage.

Business for Development started as Business for Millennial Development in 2007 with a vision to motivate Australian businesses to implement strategies in their operations to support the United Nations Millennium Development Goals. Since then, Business for Development has expanded our remit beyond advocacy to include executing feasibility studies, implementing and scaling programs and conducting research.

Below outlines our history, where we have been and where we are going.

2007 Stage 1 Advocating
2007 Established to advocate
for Millennium
Development Goals
2009 Partnering with
business
2010 Stage 2 Turning intentions into action
2013 Funding shifts from
government to private
2014 Stage 3 Delivering programs and localising teams
2014 First implementation
program
2015 Renamed Business for
Development, SDG
aligned
2017 Geographic
expansion
2020 Stage 4 Scaling for Impact
2021 Scaling in country
beyond COVID-19
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  • Credentials

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