Senior Manager, Strategic Partnerships
Root Capital Inc.
Cambridge United States
Application deadline 09/04/2023
Type of Position Full-time
Education Requirement High school/GED

Reports To: Chief External Affairs Officer
Job Type: Full-time
Region: Africa – Central America & Mexico – South America – United States
Location: Remote based in the US, Costa Rica, Mexico, Peru, or Kenya
Start Date: Immediately
Contact: Please apply by using the company site.

About Root Capital

Agriculture is the key to unlocking a better future for billions of people. But while rural families help sustain the world, they struggle to sustain themselves. Root Capital is a nonprofit social impact investor that puts its money where others don’t – in underserved agricultural businesses.

We provide financing and business training to agricultural enterprises in the “missing middle” – those that are too big for microloans but too small for commercial lenders. As these agricultural businesses succeed and scale, they become engines of impact that help farming families, communities, and economies to flourish.

Founded in 1999, we are the largest social investor in agricultural businesses. As both a lender and a nonprofit, our unique model allows us to go where other financiers don’t and support agricultural enterprises so they can succeed and grow. Our world-class team of experts identifies, partners with, and invests in agricultural entrepreneurs in Africa, Asia, and Latin America.

Over 23 years, Root Capital has invested $1.8 billion in 800 agricultural enterprises, proving these under-served businesses are bankable and investable. We have shown that access to finance helps these enterprises succeed and fuels the economy. Root Capital’s investments and essential business and finance trainings have impacted 10 million farming families through job creation, financial security, and climate resiliency. Headquartered in Cambridge, Massachusetts, we currently have offices in Costa Rica, Mexico, Nicaragua, Colombia, Peru, Ghana, and Kenya.

Position Overview

The Senior Manager, Strategic Partnerships (Senior Manager) is responsible for establishing, cultivating, and stewarding a strong network of relationships with relevant and influential stakeholders from the private and public sectors globally, who have the capacity and inclination to support the realization of Root Capital’s mission and vision. They will be responsible for partnerships that support delivery of our multi-year organizational strategy and annual plans, multiply the impact of our investment/lending and business advisory work, create value for our clients, and support the achievement of key performance indicators for our investors and other funders.

The Senior Manager will contribute to the development and delivery of high-impact initiatives and collaborations that elevate Root Capital’s ability to serve the emerging needs of agricultural businesses. They will be a critical partner and strategist for colleagues across the organization and will lead on the creation of an organizational partnership strategy. The partnership strategy development and ownership will require engaging with and understanding the full inventory of Root Capital’s activities, including: our investment/lending and advisory work; our business development, investor relations, and philanthropic resource mobilization needs; and our innovation, learning and field building work, designed to ensure a just, equitable and resilient mid-market agricultural sector. Priority partnerships arising from this new strategy are expected to include companies directly involved with or in adjacent industries to agriculture, innovative finance, and key value chains, as well as with nonprofit peers, entrepreneurial academic centers and innovative thought leadership and convening groups. Organizations (and some individuals) operating at the intersection of agriculture, innovative finance, climate, gender, technology, and next generation skills development will also be considered priorities for Root Capital’s partnerships ecosystem.

An important element of the Senior Manager’s role will be to bridge internal organizational needs and capabilities at Root Capital with significant agendas and developments externally, ensuring a focused coherence and relevance for all existing and potential partnerships. This is a unique opportunity to build a meaningful platform for Root Capital’s partnerships with external stakeholders to amplify our sectoral leadership, influence value-chain actors, and support the leverage of varied resources to realize our mission and vision.


Partnership Development and Management – 70%

    • Lead a collaborative process to formalize and then steward Root Capital’s partnership strategy, in service of the organizational vision / mission.
    • Identify areas of overlap and convergence between partners at a sectoral as well as organizational level, and how they can be structured into Root Capital’s product and service design, as well as supporting resource mobilization and communications needs, with significant inputs from the Chief Strategy Officer, Chief External Affairs Officer, and Chief Business Officer.
    • Use Root Capital’s established portfolio management approach to build a pipeline of potential partnerships, progressing them through a moves management framework based on strategic need as well as leveraging tactical opportunities.
    • Conduct research into potential and current partners to ensure the opportunity pipeline remains viable and impactful.
    • Work within Root Capital’s established relationship management framework to function as the primary relationship manager (PRM) for a portfolio of existing and potential strategic partners, overseeing a mapping exercise for each and coordinating with Root Capital colleagues to optimize relationship management.
    • Represent Root Capital’s vision, impact, and strategy with external partnership stakeholders, including at bi-lateral meetings, relevant industry and sectoral conferences and forums etc.
    • Design an active program of engagement for existing and potential partners that addresses specific goals of existing relationships as well as presenting inherent opportunities at Root Capital for potential partners.
    • Remain knowledgeable of sector trends and issues (e.g., value chain, program design, thought leadership and academic currents etc.) to inform internal stakeholder and partnership development strategy.
    • Alongside external partners, foster a culture of open dialogue and learning that emphasizes Root Capital’s thought leadership across various issues and domains.

Cross-Functional Collaboration – 30%

    • Develop and design shared value opportunities that align external stakeholder objectives with Root Capital’s mission-critical program plans and priorities, collaborating with key internal stakeholders from across the organization including (but not limited to), the Strategy and Client Services teams.
    • As defined in the partnership strategy and based on criteria co-developed with the Strategy and Client Services teams, lead the identification of new potential partners and the triaging / prioritization of partnership inquiries.
    • Centralize the tracking and management of partnership leads and opportunity development across departments; act as a resource for Roots Capital staff across the organization regarding partnership best practices and lessons learned.
    • Collaborate with Investor Relations and External Affairs colleagues, responsible for resource mobilization, to represent the full spectrum of opportunities available for partnership with Root Capital (i.e., a “funding +” approach).
    • Participate in and support the delivery of an impactful thought leadership strategy in collaboration with the Marketing & Communications and Strategy teams.
    • In collaboration with the Client Services and Strategy teams, understand and develop specific market partnership propositions that contribute to Root Capital’s aim of being the lender of choice for mid-market agricultural businesses, and supports the market’s client acquisition, lending, and value chain goals.
    • Perform other relevant duties as assigned.

Skills & Experience

    • At least 6 years of experience in creating and managing substantive partnerships on behalf of a dynamic for-profit or nonprofit organization.
    • Record of successful cross-sector shared value partnership identification and creation.
    • Demonstrable understanding and evidence of sophisticated client relationship strategy and management.
    • Comfortable directly pitching/soliciting significant partnership opportunities with senior executives.
    • Experience of engaging and guiding senior executives and high-level volunteers, e.g., Board members, in cultivating and managing relationships with different partner types.
    • Experience working with relevant domains including: international development; agricultural; impact investing; climate/conservation; youth engagement; and/or gender inclusion.
    • Experience working in the coffee sector and/or other value-chain dependent industries and engaging a diversity of stakeholders across those value chains (e.g., buyers, importers, roasters, cooperatives, producers) will be considered a plus.
    • A polished communicator; able to craft and articulate nuanced, sophisticated cases for support to diverse, global audiences and constituents.
    • Analytical mindset, comfortable working with quantitative and qualitative data and information, with the ability to construct and understand relevant narratives arising from their analysis.
    • Understanding of, and experience working with complex CRM databases (Salesforce preferred), including data entry, usage, reporting and analysis functionality.
    • Proficiency in the full suite of MS Office products.
    • Ability to see the “big picture,” think strategically, and translate strategy into targeted goals and actions.
    • Demonstrated ability to maintain positive, collaborative, productive relationships with staff at all levels, and skilled at guiding different stakeholders, teams, and departments towards consensus and understanding around partnership opportunities and fulfillment.
    • A commitment to Root Capital’s mission.
    • Ability to travel domestically and internationally.
    • Fluent English language skills essential for the position, with Spanish language proficiency (written and spoken) preferred but not critical to the role.
    • Authorized to work in US, Costa Rica, Mexico, Peru, or Kenya.

How to Apply

More information about Root Capital is available at Applications are accepted on a rolling basis. Candidates are encouraged to apply using the form below as soon as possible, making sure to include a resume and cover letter that describes your interest, qualifications, language abilities, salary requirements, and how you learned of the position. Finalist candidates will be required to provide at least three work-related references.

U.S applicants: Root Capital Inc. participates in E-Verify and will provide the federal government your I-9 information to confirm that you are authorized to work in the U.S. For more information, see here. Learn more about your right to work.