CSA: Evolutionary Aquaponic Technology And Training

Conservation South Africa (CSA)
Please note: this opportunity closing date has passed and may not be available any more.
Opportunity closing date: 
Friday, 4 December, 2020
Opportunity type: 
Call for proposals


Conservation South Africa (CSA), is a local affiliate of Conservation International (CI). CSA is committed to helping societies adopt a more sustainable approach to development, one that considers and values nature at every turn and improves human well-being through the conservation of healthy ecosystems and the goods and services they provide. CSA seeks to influence policy, develop markets, engage the private sector, and support communities to develop and implement conservation based economic growth models and longterm human wellbeing.  

CSA is seeking to appoint a service provider to assist with compiling a business plan for an Aquaponics pilot in our Kruger to Canyons landscape. CSA and our pilot partner “Be the Change Africa” have created a separate for profit social enterprise to facilitate the sale of the fresh produce and fresh water fish grown Aquaponically in the commercial pilot. The social enterprise is called Evolutionary Aquaponic Technology and training (EAT) Fresh Pty. Ltd.
Aquaponics is an innovative technology that uses fish in a closed soilless system to grow agricultural crops using only 2-5% of the water required by traditional soil-based farming. This technology and pilot are particularly relevant for water scarce communities adversely affected by a changing climate. The inherent possibilities for ending hunger and addressing extreme poverty by creating small but profitable food production businesses are extremely pertinent for the South African context.

CSA and Green Economic Development

Most economic development opportunities in small towns and villages in the rural areas of South Africa are linked to the natural environment, and small, medium, and micro enterprise development (SMMEs). Opportunities for ecotourism, agriculture, and natural product value chains are significant.  Renewable energy and technology for conservation are also increasing areas of potential for small towns in South Africa and these projects require management and technical skills that should be sourced from the local area. Part of this pilot seeks to demonstrate the potential of Aquaponic technology to stimulate climate smart agriculture for green economic development and food security in South Africa in poor water scarce communities.
Services to be provided:

  • Detailed financial modelling to form part of a broader business plan for Evolutionary Aquaponics Technology and training (EAT Fresh) Pty Ltd.
  • Summarised user friendly business plan showing the viability of the commercial Aquaponics  pilot and for profit enterprise with projected infrastructure cost, operational cost, profit and income streams and projected breakeven points, as well as a breakdown of the profit share and community arrangements and the for profit social enterprise structure.

Scope of work:

The commercial pilot will be constructed in 2021 on communal land that will be made available by the Mnisi Tribal Authority and Mpumalanga Department of Education next to Acorns to Oaks Comprehensive High School in Acornhoek Mpumalanga.
The information must include but is not limited to a budget forecast and financial projections detailed below focusing on existing fresh produce and fresh water fish markets. The service provider should limit the financial projections to the growing and sale of cucumbers, colour peppers (red, green and yellow), cherry tomatoes and fresh water fish. The model must explain that the choice of produce and fish has been predetermined based on a rapid assessment of the Acornhoek and luxury lodge market and produce that is most in demand in the area.  
Using all the available materials including the EAT Fresh proposal, budgets, market assessments, local costing for materials for the construction as well as competitive pricing for the produce and fish, and any other relevant data, research or case studied the service provider is expected to develop a detailed business plan with a well thought out financial model.  
Budget forecast:

  • How much money do we need to get the business off the ground?
  • Capital infrastructure costs versus ongoing operational costs (grant funding has been secured and will be used for the infrastructure costs).
  • How much money is needed on a monthly basis for operational costs and possible sources (short term grant funding versus long term profit to be generated from the sale of fresh produce and fresh water fish).
  • Ongoing costs related to employing staff to run the commercial hub and training centre.
  • How long do we think it will take to break even?
  • Once we break even how will we spend the income generated e.g. percentage of profits reinvested into the social enterprise for operational costs, maintenance training etc. and what percentage will be shared amongst shareholders or community trust members.

Financial Projections:

  • Financial goals and expectations based on market research.
  • Anticipated revenue streams for first 12 to 24 months.
  • Annual projected earnings for year 2,3, 4 etc.

Skills Required

  • The service provider must be suitably qualified to undertake the analysis (economist or development specialist with relevant knowledge and skills.
  • Have a proven track record of producing high quality economic analysis, development assessments or business plans in the South African context for small to medium sized businesses.
  • Familiarity with the Mpumalanga province and rural development context in South Africa is beneficial as well as knowledge/experience in the agriculture sector and Aquaponic technology.

Consultancy Deliverables and Budget

  • A full financial model and business plan for EAT Fresh Pty Ltd.
  • User friendly simple business plan summary
  • The total budget should not exceed R50 000.00

Duration of Services

To be determined by the service provider. The service provider should allow for draft submission, review, comments on draft and finalization and sign off final documentation.  
Application Process and Submission Deadline

The application should include a written quotation that includes a cost breakdown for the delivery of the services (please note that this business plan is donor funded and thus reasonableness of the cost will be a factor in selection of the successful proposal due to budget constraints).
Interested service providers should submit a written quotation csaprocurement@conservation.org by 4 December 2020. The successful service provider will be vetted by CSA / Conservation International for procurement purposes, must comply with said procurement procedures and must submit an invoice to CSA upon completion of the business plan to facilitate payment.
Applicants who have received no response within 3 days of the closing should kindly assume that their bid was unsuccessful. CSA reserves the right not to appoint a service provider if the applicants do not meet the required standards.
Delivery Date of Final Business Plan
31 January 2021
Available Resources and Right Access

The service provider will have access to project personnel, in-house developed materials such as the Aquaponics proposals and budgets and the market study conducted in 2017 to identify potential fresh produce and fresh water fish markets in the Kruger to Canyons biosphere and any other relevant reports as identified during the consultancy.

By accepting this invitation to quote, you agree to keep in confidence all information provided to you, whether written or oral, in relation to the organization’s business generally which is not already in the public domain, to use it only for the purposes of this EATt Fresh business plan and for no other reason and not to disclose any of the said information to any third party.

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