WCS Global Initiatives

What CEDP Supports

Beginning in 2013, Conservation Enterprise Development Program selects on a competitive basis a new slate of 3-6 promising projects each year. These projects can be brand new concepts, or already existing enterprises that have not yet reached their full potential. The slate ranges across the early-stage development spectrum. 

In 2015, CEDP is running a competitive award program to provide eligible conservation enterprises and concepts with the following:

  • One feasibility study or business plan for a concept stage enterprise
  • One award of in-kind capacity building support or a small scale grant (up to US$20,000) for an early stage enterprise
  • One to three awards of in-kind support to enterprises in preparing for and accessing external impact investing loans from partner organization

Use of Funds

CEDP expects enterprises to leverage funding to increase conservation benefits and improve financial sustainability. Applicants must demonstrate a clear link between the enterprise’s operations and improvement of biodiversity outcomes in area of operations.

Above: Members of the Ubwizabwa Nyungwe Beekeeper Union participate in a workshop as part of consultant-led participatory business planning process through CEDP support. Photo Credit: WCS

    Progression of Support

    CEDP is focused on the early stages of the enterprise life cycle –when there is the greatest need for support- from concept up through helping enterprises access external loans at the growth stage. Credit: WCS


    Areas of Support

    ● Capital investment (including infrastructure and equipment)  
    ● Working capita  
    ● Capacity development  
    ● Financial Training (including Loan Preparedness)  
    ● Marketing and certification  
    ● Business plans  
    ● Monitoring and evaluation  
    ● Feasibility studies  
    ● Technical assistance

    Loan Preparedness Support

    CEDP accepts Expressions of Interests on a rolling basis from WCS field staff for support to growth stage conservation enterprises looking for impact investing loan funding

    This support includes:

    Diagnostics: One-day comprehensive business process assessment to collect data about each enterprise’s administration, finance, management, and production systems and processes. Enterprise staff work with consultants to co-create work plans based on identified areas of managerial or process risks.

    Financial Training: Training on accounting, financial planning, risk management, and financial statement analysis.

    Loan Application Preparation: Up to 10 days of training on how to prepare a loan application.

    Impact Metrics: WCS field staff review and monitoring of enterprise conservation and social impacts.