Conexsus, USAID and PPA: Partnership to Develop Community Businesses

Over three years, their initiative aims to improve business management

January, 2023The future holds many opportunities for small farmers and extractive communities. This business ecosystem is able to generate wealth, conserve forests, and sustain the planet. However, it still requires support to organize itself, gain scale, and ensure economic viability with a view to generating impact.

Considering the key role played by local organizations for the development of a resilient economy in the Amazon, Conexsus has partnered with the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) and the Partnership Platform for the Amazon (PPA) to develop more sustainable community businesses in the region. 

"One of the main challenges in protecting the Amazon and conserving biodiversity is related to fostering sustainable economic alternatives for the 28 million Brazilians who live in the forest. We believe that one of the best pathways toward conservation is to work with the private sector and promote entrepreneurship. Initiatives such as this one with Conexsus help lay the groundwork for these businesses to grow,” said Ted Gehr, USAID/Brazil director.

PPA project manager Juliana Simionato said that “programs that support community businesses in the Amazon—both in the market and traction stages, such as Conexsus—are key for the development of the entire ecosystem (…) In addition to the economic and institutional strengthening of these businesses, this partnership will help to develop structuring actions to bring together different actors and reinforce value chains, generating permanent results in biodiversity conservation and improving the local population’s quality of life,” she added.

Over three years, the partnership will develop 100 socioenvironmental impact community businesses in the Amazon through solutions aimed at improving management and capitalization, in addition to supporting the mapping, design, and conception of solutions that contribute to activating regional business ecosystems.

For Pedro Frizo, socioenvironmental program coordinator at Conexsus, “strengthening the work carried out by these organizations is essential for the consolidation of sociobiodiversity chains that are both socially and economically inclusive and environmentally responsible.”

The initiative is supported by the Alliance of Bioversity International and CIAT and the Norwegian International Climate and Forest Initiative (NICFI).

Learn more here.