Portfolio Manager, East Africa

Reports To: General Manager, East Africa
Job Type: Full-time
Location: East Africa
Start Date: Immediately
Contact: Please apply by using the form below.

About Root Capital

Root Capital invests in the growth of agricultural enterprises so they can transform rural communities. These businesses purchase crops such as coffee, cocoa, or grains from smallholder farmers. With growth, they become engines of impact that can raise incomes, create jobs, empower women and young people, sustain peace and preserve vulnerable ecosystems.

Root Capital supplies these businesses with vital resources: access to capital, trade and technical partners, financial training, and conservation practices. We work in hard-to-serve geographies where others don’t. To date, we’ve loaned $1.2 billion to improve the lives of six million people in farming communities.

Position Overview

The Portfolio Manager in East Africa is responsible for developing business and managing a portfolio of clients; analyzing loan applicants using rigorous financial, environmental, and social criteria; presenting loan analysis to Root Capital’s internal and external credit committees for decision; closing loans, including ensuring complete documentation; monitoring existing loans to ensure timely repayment; as a client relationship manager, coordinating all Root Capital activities within his/her portfolio (such as training and technical assistance on financial management).


Business Development (20%)

  • Develop a pipeline of qualified loan candidates in East Africa (mainly Rwanda, Uganda, and Kenya). Develop networks of referrers, including value chain actors, technical assistance providers, and trade associations. Present Root Capital’s credit offerings to and invite loan applications from qualified businesses.
  • Assess client’s credit and advisory needs and recommend appropriate mix of Root Capital services
  • Actively manage and maintain a pipeline of loan opportunities.

Underwriting and loan closing (30%) — with support from the Nairobi-based credit analyst

  • Collect information about loan applicants as specified by Root Capital’s credit policies
  • Ensure that all proposed loans meet Root Capital’s criteria for credit quality and security
  • Perform due diligence to verify client information, including conducting site visits and management interviews
  • Conduct financial, operational, and management analysis of applicant companies, working with the credit analyst in Nairobi
  • Work closely with Credit Administration in relation to transactions involving third-party lenders. Communicate and negotiate terms as required.
  • Prepare credit memos, present analysis, and make credit recommendations to Root Capital’s credit committees for decision-making, following Root Capital’s credit underwriting policies and processes
  • Apply Root Capital’s social and environmental impact criteria. Support Root Capital’s portfolio servicing personnel to close loans, including ensuring proper documentation.

Client Relationship Management (30%) — with support from the Nairobi-based credit analyst

  • Monitor active loans, working with the credit analyst, to analyze client performance, track compliance with covenants and reporting requirements, and develop risk ratings.
  • Lead communication with Root Capital clients to address identified deficiencies in active loans. In heightened risk situations, collaborate with Risk Manager to devise and implement a collections strategy.
  • Manage customer service by facilitating and coordinating with Credit Admin. and Treasury for all loan servicing needs and resolving customer issues as they arise.

Management and development of Credit Analyst (10%)

  • Set work plans and performance expectations, and provide ongoing and timely performance feedback to credit analyst
  • Ensure credit analyst has the information, resources, tools, and support to be effective and motivated.

Advisory Services (10%)

  • As necessary, collaborate with the Advisory Services Manager in Nairobi to address financial management weaknesses of prospective and existing clients as necessary by facilitating training provision through qualified local consultants
  • Help to develop a training plan, and work with local trainers to ensure effective implementation.

Education and Experience

  • University degree in Business Administration (MBA), finance, economics, or related field, or equivalent experience is desirable
  • More than 7 years of experience working in agricultural, commercial, and/ or SME finance, in Kenya and/ or elsewhere in eastern and southern Africa. Lending experience with strong credit skills or investment analysis is necessary.
  • Management experience a plus
  • Experience with small and medium enterprise (SME) or agricultural lending is desirable.
  • Professional experience or academic qualifications related to agricultural value chains is desirable

Required Skills

  • Strong interpersonal, negotiation, and presentation skills.
  • Ability to work under pressure, establish and maintain deadlines, and coordinate with multiple people across the organization.
  • Strong experience with Microsoft Word and Excel is necessary. Additional knowledge of financial software is a plus.
  • Strong interest in the field of social impact investing. Passionate about supporting the advancement of Root Capital’s mission of growing prosperity in rural communities in Africa.
  • Willingness to travel to rural areas of East and Southern Africa.
  • Excellent communication skills (verbal and writing) in English. Fluency in Kiswahili is also desirable.
  • Highly organized and high attention to detail.
  • Proactive, service-oriented attitude.
  • Authorized to work in Kenya

Apply Now

To apply, please fill out the form below and upload your resume and cover letter in the appropriate spaces.

Root Capital provides equal employment opportunities (EEO) to all employees and applicants for employment without regard to race, color, creed, religion, sex, national origin, ancestry, active military or veteran status, age, physical or mental disability, medical condition, pregnancy (which includes pregnancy, childbirth, medical conditions related to pregnancy and childbirth, and breastfeeding and expressing breast milk), sexual orientation, gender, gender identity, gender expression, genetic information, or any other characteristic protected by law. Root Capital is committed to creating a dynamic work environment that upholds our leadership principles of: empowerment, equity, integrity, service, and transparency.

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