A Sidley pro bono team helped myAgro, an Emerging Enterprises Pro Bono Program client and an inspiring social enterprise, with the drafting of their third series of working capital facilities. myAgro helps to transform the lives of small-scale farmers in Mali, Senegal, and Tanzania by alleviating poverty. The enterprise provides business solutions for farmers living in remote places, including financing through layaway savings for farm inputs, distribution of seed and fertilizer, and providing training on agricultural techniques.
The credit facilities are one part of furthering myAgro’s North Star of supporting one million smallholder farmers by 2026, and the investments went toward securing inputs and fertilizers for the 2022 farming season. Securing seeds and fertilizers is an essential element of myAgro’s mission. The funds received from the working capital facilities mitigated the pandemic’s impact on price increases and the delivery of critical farming supplies, bringing hope to smallholder farmers in a time of international distress.
Anushka Ratnayake, the Founder and CEO of myAgro, said: “The Sidley team helped myAgro to react quickly to the global supply chain crisis. With Sidley’s legal support, myAgro will be able to support 200,000 farmers in 2022 by providing food security and increasing their incomes by 35%.”
“The Sidley team is proud to play a small part in myAgro’s continued growth as it powers toward its one million farmer goal,” said Global Finance partner Annie Wallis, who led the team. “We are gratified to have served myAgro and their seemingly simple, yet incredibly impactful mission for many years, and look forward to our continued partnership.”
In addition to Annie Wallis (Chicago), the Sidley pro bono team comprised Nathan Howell (Partner, Investment Funds, Chicago) and Andrew Adair (Senior Managing Associate, Global Finance, Chicago) who worked alongside a cross-office team of lawyers on the matter as part of the firm’s Emerging Enterprises Pro Bono Project, which is based in Sidley’s Geneva office and is celebrating its 10-year anniversary in 2022.