For the 2nd year supported by WISIONS, Nexus for Development will bring together ecosystem actors for a discussion on accelerating entrepreneurship in Asia through access to finance. 

The free two-day workshop will strengthen the entrepreneurial capacity of sustainable energy, water, and sanitation enterprises in Asia by fostering mutual understanding and improved collaboration between entrepreneurs and financiers. 

Note that social enterprises based outside of Yangon can apply for a stipend to offset travel costs. Applications should be submitted as soon as possible will be considered on a rolling basis. If interested, please apply by sending a short introduction of yourself, justification for financial support and estimated costs to with “Application for LIFT Yangon Travel Support” in the subject line.  Applications will be considered on a rolling basis until the 8th of February.


Tuesday, February 26, 2019

for Social Entrepreneurs delivering sustainable energy, water, and sanitation solutions

Training on advanced financial topics and peer-to-peer knowledge exchange for sustainable energy, water and sanitation social entrepreneurs.

  8:15     –     Registration  

  8:45     –     Welcome

  9:00     –     Peer to Peer Learning

Participants – representing enterprises providing clean energy, water, and sanitation solutions across Asia – will have an opportunity to network and share best practices. The session will include facilitated round table discussions on topics such as collecting money from customers/financing end users, after sale services, and entering new markets. 

11:00     –    Adjusting your pitch and financials to meet investor criteria

Speaker: Jessica Aung – Investment Manager (Myanmar Representative) DEG – German Investment and Development Company

Trainers will share insights into financier’s due diligence process. Attendees will learn more about what financiers look for in investable businesses. Participants will increase their understanding of financier investment criteria and how to speak the language of finance to effectively present their businesses to investors.

12:15     –    Lunch

13:30    –    Pros and Cons of different financial types, tools and products

Speaker: Robbert Groenen – Director Myanmar One to Watch

At what growth stage should an enterprise utilize debt vs equity financing? What are the benefits and disadvantages of accepting first-loss capital, project or results-based financing?  In this training, entrepreneurs will learn more about which financial products are appropriate for their businesses and gain insights into what question should be asked of financiers when negotiating loan terms.

15:15     –    Optimizing Cash Flow Management 

Speaker: Mo Hom Noon – Business and Financial Analyst One to Watch

A refresher course on cash flow management. Trainers will do a deep dive to help participants understanding how much money is flowing in and out of their business, money trends and how to prepare for an enterprise’s financial stability.

16:30     –    Closing 

Group discussion to reflect on lessons learned and how these trainings can be applied the following day during the joint Nexus and ANDE Workshop.

Wednesday, February 27, 2019

for Social Entrepreneurs, Financiers, and Intermediaries

Co-hosted by

Joint Workshop by ANDE & Nexus to support the scale and effectiveness of entrepreneurship in Myanmar and Asia with a focus on access to finance. Launches of ANDE Myanmar Entrepreneurial Ecosystem Snapshot and Nexus’ Finance Solutions Mapping. See all registered participants (list will be updated on a weekly basis)


   8:30     –     Registration

   9:00     –     Welcome

   9:15     –    Leveraging Innovative Finance Together: Financial Solutions Mapping launch and Discussion

Speaker: Jennifer Louie – Executive Director Nexus for Development

Which financial tools, types and products are available to entrepreneurs interested in scaling their businesses? Where can financiers from across Asia publicise their financial products to sustainable energy, water and sanitation entrepreneurs? Nexus for Development designed the Finance Solutions Mapping, an interactive tool that helps entrepreneurs working in this sector better identify and access innovative finance. By providing an overview of more than 100 financial schemes available to this group of entrepreneurs, the mapping aims to be a centralized resource for both entrepreneurs and financiers operating in Southeast Asia.

The mapping was a key output of Nexus’ Leveraging Innovative Finance Together programme launched in January 2019 to promote opportunities for direct dialogue between entrepreneurs and financiers on accelerating entrepreneurship in the region through access to finance. In addition to the live demonstration of the Finance Solutions Mapping, we will look at the challenges and perceptions of knowledge gaps for both entrepreneurs and financiers, and ask stakeholders to share their experiences during implementation. We will discover together how to replicate success stories and different ways to promote more transparent dialogue.

10:45     –    Demystifying Financier’s Approaches to Risk

Moderator: Jennifer Louie – Executive Director Nexus for Development

Panelists: Dondi Hananto – Partner Patamar Capital, Nathalie Risteau – Co-founder and Director Mandalay Yoma Company Ltd., Peter Crowhurst – Chief Executive Officer British Chamber of Commerce in Myanmar, U Saw Dino Ku – Executive Director A-Bank

From 2007-2017, Development Finance Institutions (DFIs) and private Impact Investors such as family offices, corporations, foundations, and development banks have deployed more than USD 12 billion of impact capital across Southeast Asia (GIIN, 2018, Landscape for Impact Investing in Southeast Asia). As the pool of impact-driven financiers continues to diversify and grow, how do approaches to risk vary across these actors and emerging markets in Asia.

What do financiers consider when determining their tolerance for risk? What are the tools and strategies available to help mitigate financier’s concerns, particularly for entrepreneurs implementing perceived high-risk projects or technologies. During this session we will ask a panel of both financiers and entrepreneurs to share their insights and respond to these questions. We will then break into small group discussions to foster direct dialogue between workshop attendees for further discussions on different perspectives and strategies to mitigate risk.

12.15     –    Networking Lunch

13:30     –    Aligning on Impact: Entrepreneur Spotlights and Interactive Discussion

Opening Speaker and Judge: Brianna Losoya – Senior Impact Analyst ANDE

Speakers: Francesco Carocci – Project Manager OTAGO, Mila Bedrenets – Deputy CEO Solar-Home, Rachel Pringle – CEO Hydrologic

Judges: Geoff Revell – Managing Director of WaterSHED Ventures, Margarita Manzo – Senior Investment Manager Nexus for Development, Peter Witton – Director & Co-Founder Anthem Asia

As financiers continue to look beyond financial returns towards driving meaningful social and environmental outcomes, how are entrepreneurs monitoring, quantifying and communicating their impact? What are the best methodologies and strategies available, and how can entrepreneurs utilize these frameworks to effectively communicate their outcomes while meeting financier expectations?

The session will present global trends, frameworks, and metrics for impact measurement, and then invite select entrepreneurs to take the stage with short impact-focused pitches on how they monitor, quantify and communicate their outcome. A panel of expert judges, representing a variety of diverse financiers, will then provide real-time feedback to entrepreneurs.

In an interactive group Q&A, we’ll then ask the audience to share their own perspectives on the topic and spark a conversation on various expectations and challenges in presenting their outcomes to key stakeholders. This session will promote more direct dialogue and increased understanding among stakeholders to demystify how people and organizations working in this ecosystem defines, measures, and communicates impact.

14:30     –    ANDE Myanmar Entrepreneurial Ecosystem Snapshot Launch

Learning Lab Facilitator: Courtney Savie Lawrence – Head of Exploration UNDP Asia Pacific Regional Innovation Centre

What financial and nonfinancial support is available for entrepreneurs in Myanmar’s Entrepreneurial Ecosystem? Which organizations are actively supporting entrepreneurship in Myanmar and what kind of support they provide?

ANDE will share key findings, gaps, and opportunities identified from the survey, which has been completed by over 200 Myanmar entrepreneurial ecosystem players. These organizations include investors, capacity development providers, business development support, professional service, and technical assistance providers, government agencies, to name a few.
During the session, we will showcase initiatives on the ground that highlight lessons learned and partnership opportunities to help bridge the existing gap in Myanmar and across Southeast Asia.

16:15     –    Looking forward: Working Session with all ecosystem actors

What’s next? What’s the role for each actor to play in Entrepreneurial Ecosystems in Myanmar and across Asia? What steps can we take collectively and individually to create real change? This working session aims to reflect back and look ahead together. The format will be structured in an interactive dialogue where we co-create a common roadmap to identify an action plan to build collaboration among actors in Myanmar and across Asia.

17:00     –    Closing remarks


Jessica Aung

Robbert Groenen

Jennifer Louie

Nathalie Risteau

Mila Bedrenets

Mo Hom Noon

Margarita Manzo

Francesco Carocci

Brianna Losoya

Rachel Pringle


Sule Shangri-La Yangon
#223, Sule Pagoda Road

This workshop is made possible with support of WISIONS

For futher enquiry, please contact directly Asha Harvey.

AVPN Myanmar Social Investment Summit 2019 will take place on the 26th of February in parallel with Nexus’ day of capacity building with entrepreneurs. The Summit will bring together a diverse group of funders and resource providers from Myanmar and the Asian region to discuss collaborative and outcome-focused social investment strategies and opportunities. Nexus’ workshop agenda will complement the AVPN Summit by promoting solutions-based discussions, market connections and increased understanding within the entrepreneurial ecosystem. We invite Summit attendees to join us on the 27th to leverage the back-to-back events.