Trade in Global Value Chains Initiative (TGVCI)

TGVCI is an innovative challenge fund which supports projects/initiatives that will help achieve better employment opportunities, working conditions and social outcomes for workers and smallholder farmers.

This guidance was withdrawn on

This fund is now closed.


The aim of TGVCI is to support projects that lead to better economic and social benefits for workers and smallholder farmers and facilitate a more holistic approach to these issues by bringing together relevent stakeholders including private companies, government and civil society.

TGVCI provides co-financing support and targeted technical assistance to build momentum through coalitions of civil society groups, government and private sector companies and support them to undertake projects that aim directly to deliver social and economic benefits to workers and small holder farmers and in the process play a part in building a more sustainable and resilient business model for the future.


The programme is expected to run 2 rounds of grant funding. First call for proposals took place in September 2013 and approved projects from this call are being implemented. The implementation period typically ranges from 1 to 1.5 years. Second call for proposals is scheduled for June / July 2014. TGVCI provides grants ranging from £50,000 to £750,000 but projects must demonstrate that they meet the strong criteria for funding and provide evidence of value for money throughout the life of the project.

Criteria for TGVCI applicants

Bids must be led by a private sector enterprise or entity (the sponsor) that is either a retailer or a manufacture brand with an established share of the global market or is working with such an enterprise in partnership to implement the project. The sponsor in its bid must demonstrate its capacity and financial stability and must also be able to contribute a minimum of 50% of project. Contributions must make up at least 50% of the total cost of the project and that contribution must be no less than 50% cash based. The project partners i.e. other relevant stakeholders may invest some new resources in it and may benefit from it. TGVCI supports projects in Kenya, South Africa (in the horticulture sector) and Bangladesh (in the garment sector). Grant funding requested must:

  • be for a project to test an innovative concept not a general request for finance for a business or for an organization
  • demonstrate how workers/smallholder farmers or communities are likely to benefit (socially and/or economically) on a sustainable basis and result in their upgrading
  • demonstrate clear commercial relevance and potential scale up

The project should:

  • involve an intervention that would be unlikely to be addressed by the private sector without the support of the TGVCI
  • complements, rather than duplicates, the work of others

The sponsor and relevant stakeholder must have at least one member resident in the country selected for intervention. Projects should not have negative impacts on other businesses or activities and should also consider their impact on the local environment.

How to apply

There is a 2-stage application process to apply for the scheme:

  • stage 1: applicants submit a concept note
  • stage 2: applicants successful at the concept note stage will be invited to submit a full project (proposal) application

The funding is being distributed through two rounds of proposals, first one was conducted in 2013 and the second one is scheduled for summer / autumn of 2014.

Timetable for 2013

Activity Start End
Project concept note submission phase 15 June 15 July
Concept clincs and project proposal submission phase 1 Aug 1 Oct
Internal review of full applications 1 Oct 15 Oct
Independent panel review of full applications 15 Oct 30 Oct
Due diligence and contractual details phase 1 Nov 30 Dec
Contracts signed with grantees 1 Dec 31 Dec
Approved projects start Jan 2015  

Links to guidance and the application templates which you will need to make an application are provided below.

Please read the guidance documents carefully before commencing your application.

  • guidelines and eligibility criteria
  • concept note template

Contact information

For more information about TGVCI, please contact the TGVCI fund manager:

Steve Homer, TGVCI Team Leader, Cardno Emerging Markets,

Office: +44 1844 216500 Fax: +44 1844 261593

Suite 3,
Oxford House,
Oxford Road,


website: Trade in Global Value Chains Initiative (TGVCI)

Published 31 October 2013