Credit: Jeremy Stenuit, Unsplash
Supporting entrepreneurial ecosystems through the COVID-19 crisis and recovery.

The effect of COVID-19 on economies around the world has been unprecedented. While evidence on this impact is only beginning to emerge, it is clear that the economic damage has been particularly severe for SGBs in developing economies. Given the importance of SGBs to economic growth and job creation, supporting these businesses—and the organizations that support them—must be a critical part of the global recovery.

ANDE's COVID-19 Response

To best support our members and the overall SGB sector during the ongoing crisis, ANDE is continuously working to understand our members’ evolving needs and adjust our programming to best serve those needs. ANDE provides relevant resources and a platform for sharing adaptation strategies through our communications channels and this resource page. We facilitate peer learning through more than ten events to date in our COVID-19 webinar series (contact ANDE for password), and explore ongoing learning and action opportunities for the network.

COVID Response Alliance for Social Entrepreneurs

ANDE and more than eighty leading global organizations have joined the COVID Response Alliance for Social Entrepreneurs, founded in April 2020 to help mobilize support for social entrepreneurs and to raise awareness of the vital role they play – during the crisis and beyond. The Alliance was initiated by the World Economic Forum’s Schwab Foundation for Social Entrepreneurship and Yunus Social Business with support from the GHR Foundation. Since its inception, the Alliance has sought to pool knowledge, experiences and resources to further its individual and collective firing power in support of social entrepreneurs who are acting as first responders to the crisis throughout the world.

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R3 Coalition

ANDE has joined the Response, Recovery, and Resilience Investment Coalition (R3 Coalition), launched in May 2020 with the goal to streamline impact investing efforts that will address the large-scale social and economic consequences of COVID-19. This initiative is managed by the Global Impact Investing Network and will focus on surfacing and showcasing investment opportunities – particularly those related to health interventions and access to capital – for investors seeking new COVID-related investments. The R3 Coalition will also share learnings, insights, and resources with the wider investment community to inform and support longer-term economic recovery and resilience efforts.

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ANDE COVID-19 Briefs

"After more than two years of living with the acute challenges of the COVID-19 pandemic, the small and growing business (SGB) sector is now facing a longer-term reality that affects not only business operations but also how these businesses measure and communicate their impact. The SGB sector is at a critical junction in the pandemic where organizations need to reflect on how hastily crafted impact measurement and management (IMM) solutions may or may not fit into their longer-term IMM strategy.

For these reasons, the purpose of this brief is to:

Highlight the unique IMM challenges faced by Sub-Saharan African SGBs due to COVID-19;
Guide entrepreneurial ecosystem builders in adapting their IMM systems within the context of the new COVID-19 reality; and
Provide tailored resources to enable entrepreneurial ecosystem builders to further adapt their IMM systems to best support entrepreneurs in the «new abnormal.»"

"The effect of COVID-19 on economies around the world has been unprecedented. While evidence on this impact is only beginning to emerge, it is clear that the economic damage has been particularly severe for SGBs in emerging markets. This issue brief summarizes initial evidence regarding the impact of COVID-19 on SGBs and the SGB support sector more broadly in emerging markets. Read the brief, which summarizes current risks, impacts, and needs so that organizations and individuals who support SGBs can ensure more effective interventions.This report was prepared as part of the Aspen Partnership for an Inclusive Economy, with generous support from the initiative’s founding partner Mastercard."

"In May 2020, ANDE released an issue brief summarizing initial evidence from the first phase of the crisis in March and April 2020 regarding the impact of COVID-19 on SGBs and the SGB support sector more broadly in emerging markets. As the crisis and its effects on the sector continue to develop, we are working to keep updating information with new data and insights. This addendum to the brief presents new data collected in May-June 2020 from ANDE members regarding their needs, actions they are taking, and updated impressions of the impact that the crisis is having and will have on the sector."

June 9, 2020

As American small businesses continue to be squeezed by the fallout of the COVID-19 crisis, it is increasingly clear that the approximately $659 billion already committed by Congress won’t be enough. It is similarly unlikely that unprecedented spending by governments will be enough to turn back the tide in Europe and elsewhere. But as bad as things are for the private sector in the wealthiest nations, an even greater disaster looms over the small and growing businesses that represent the economic engine of the developing world—with no bailout in sight.

May 26, 2020

In emerging markets, the COVID-19 crisis presents an even greater economic challenge than in the United States. The American economy was the strongest in the world before the crisis. Even now, under widespread stay-at-home orders, US unemployment has risen to only 20%, whereas most emerging market countries started the year with formal unemployment rates well above 20%.

May 19, 2020

The Aspen Network for Development Entrepreneurs (ANDE), a membership organization for small and mid-sized enterprises in emerging markets, is a member of the Alliance and the R3 network launched by the Global Impact Investing Network (GIIN). When the pandemic hit, ANDE looked for ways to support its members — which naturally meant reaching out to other organizations. Randall Kempner, ANDE’s Executive Director, is cautiously optimistic that the networks will make a difference, even if just to share best practices.