Green Superstar Impact SMEs Competition 2021

An opportunity for impact-driven SMEs to increase environmental impact!


Did you participate in Oxfam’s SME or start-up development program in Egypt, Pakistan, Nigeria, Somaliland, Uganda, or Vietnam? Do you have the ambition to increase your environmental impact and have an innovative green idea to make your business more environmental-friendly? Or are you looking to scale-up an environmentally-friendly product, service, technology, or production process? 

Then please apply to our competition and maybe your business will become the next Green Superstar Impact SME!

Oxfam will launch a Superstar Impact SME competition in 6 countries including Egypt, Pakistan, Nigeria, Somaliland, Uganda, and Vietnam. In each country, winners will be awarded grant funding and technical support* from our local partners to implement the project and be featured in a short movie to promote their business idea. Oxfam will provide a total of EUR 35k per country for grants and technical support. With this competition, we want to support impact-driven SMEs that have the ambition to increase their environmental impact either by:

  • Introducing environmentally-friendly practices into their existing business model, for example increasing the use of renewable energy, reducing water-use, introducing recycled materials, reducing waste, innovate a product to extend its lifetime, or introducing farming practices that halt the loss of biodiversity and land degradation.
  • Scaling-up an environmental-friendly product, service, technology, or production process,for example, expanding a solar energy service to a new area or adding production capacity for a recyclable or organic product. If you have a circular business model, scaling this will also fit this competition.

Through the competition, Oxfam aims to learn what it takes to create and scale-up an environmentally-friendly business and see some great examples of impact-driven business, the Green Superstars!

*Please contact the Oxfam office and the local partner organization in your country for more information on the exact amount of grant funding and the type of support that will be awarded in the competition.

To apply, your company needs to meet the following minimum requirements**:

  • Previous participant in either i) Oxfam’s SME Development project in Uganda or Vietnam; ii) the Work in Progress! project for Egypt, Nigeria, or Somalia (Somaliland)***; iii) Empower Youth for Work project in Pakistan.
  • Registered commercial company in Egypt, Pakistan, Nigeria, Somaliland, Uganda, or Vietnam.
  • Meet the requirements of an ‘impact-driven company’: namely: i) the business has ‘impact’ as their mission or key driver; ii) the business resolves a societal issue, not through charity, but through their business model; iii) the entrepreneur has a ‘social heart’, clear motivation and vision on impact.
  • The proposed project focuses on increasing environmental impact by introducing environmental-friendly practices into the existing business model or scaling-up an environmental-friendly product, service, technology, or production process.
  • The company is not in any way involved in activities such as arms, tobacco, alcohol, and gambling industries, registered in so-called tax-havens, or involved in environmental or human rights abuses or corruption.
  • Grant funding should be matched at least 50% with an own contribution of the applicant (cash and/or in-kind).
  • The proposed project can be implemented in the period of April to August 2021.
**Additional local requirements can be provided per country. Please contact the Oxfam office or the local partner organization in your country for more information.
*** In Somalia (Somaliland), companies outside the Oxfam program are also invited to apply. 

Competition process and planning

This competition is by invitation only for businesses that participated in Oxfam’s projects in Egypt, Pakistan, Nigeria, Somaliland, Uganda, or Vietnam.

Step 1: Application

Candidates can apply by completing the application form. The application is only complete, in combination with a venture profile on VC4A. If you don’t have a venture profile yet, you will be asked to create this in the first step when clicking on the “Apply” button at the top of the page.

Please download the budget template below, as you will be asked to upload this in your application form. The deadline for applications is the 15th of February end of the day.

Step 2: Selection

A local jury scores all applications and invites the best applicants to pitch their company and proposal. Winners will be announced before the 29th of March, after which grant contracts will be processed.

Step 3: Implementation

Projects will be implemented from April until August 2021.

Environmental impact

We encourage applicants to make use of the United Nations Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) framework to target, define, and assess the environmental impact of their company and proposal. Examples of SDGs that focus on increasing environmental impact are:

Would you like to have more information on environmental impact and the SDGs or circular business models? Please check out a description here.

Assessment criteria (applicant is scored on this)

  1. Social/environmental impact (35%): The Impact SME has a clear vision and strategy for social and/or environmental impact. It has good potential to grow and scale the impact. This is also shown in numbers (staff data and social indicators). Impact on women and youth, in particular, is an added value.. Environmental impact is important, clearly essential.
  2. Feasibility and relevance of proposal (25%):The proposed project is described clearly and is relevant in increasing the environmental impact of the Impact SME. It is viable and feasible to implement the project in a short time-frame. The budget and own contribution are realistic.
  3. Strength of team/entrepreneur (25%): The team has the qualifications and experience to manage and implement the project successfully. Motivation and ideas are clearly communicated. The team has unquestionable integrity. Having a significant number of women and youth on the team is a plus.
  4. Growth potential of the business (15%):The Impact SME addresses a clear market need with a unique product or service. It demonstrates innovation. There are a clear business model and a realistic growth strategy. The financial figures (historic and projections) show good performance and potential.

Eligible and non-eligible activities for funding

  • Business support services (e.g. consultants/experts on scaling, sales, operations, investments, social impact)
  • Investments (machines or equipment needed to scale-up)
  • Business development costs (e.g. test or launch new products, market study)
  • Visibility costs (brand design, promotional materials, trade fairs)
  • Scaling of impact (process redesign, sustainable production, fair trade certification)
  • Purchasing and rent/leasing of land or buildings/facilities;
  • Bank charges, cost of guarantees, and similar charges;
  • Overhead costs such as office supplies, support staff, management;
  • Value and registration costs of intellectual property rights.

Download the Superstars project budget template:

Budget Template


February 24, 2021
Program dates Jan 4 - Apr 30, 2021
OrganizerOXFAM Impact SME’s Development Programme
Targets Egypt, Nigeria, Pakistan, Somalia, Uganda, Vietnam
Sectors Sector agnostic
SDG (7)
11. Sustainable Cities and Communities, 12. Responsible Consumption and Production, 13. Climate Action, 15. Life on Land, 6. Clean Water and Sanitation, 7. Affordable and Clean Energy, 9. Industry, Innovation and Infrastructure



Shahruh Technologies (Private) Limited
Transforming Through Technology & Innovation
Pakistan Agribusiness, Agritech, Information technology
Agrona for Manufacturing and Trade
We make wood without cutting a single tree
Egypt Agribusiness, Furniture, Manufacturing
Gamification app with iot Supply chain system to waste management
Egypt Waste management and recycling
Cyber Tor
Secure the World form Black Hat Hackers
Pakistan Artificial intelligence, Computer software, Educat…
Raasty wohi, Soch Naye
Pakistan Educational services, Environmental services, Wate…
Pad-Up Creations
Period with pride
Nigeria Medical equipment and supplies, Pharmaceuticals, S…
Plastic Venture
Plastic Venture is a new startup that turn waste plastics into bricks
Somalia Business services, Environmental services, Manufac…
Manal and CO with a new PROJECT initiative Cantex
A nature to nature concept
Pakistan Manufacturing, Packaging, Waste management and rec…
Bullale Organic Farming
Live life simply and simply live”.
Somalia Agribusiness
Denim core
Denim goods manufacturer from rejected fabric stocks.
Pakistan Clothing and textiles production, Manufacturing
GO5 Packaging
A Uganda free of single use plastic polythene bags
Uganda Manufacturing, Packaging
Chanja Datti Ltd
At Chanja Datti, we promote circular economy through recycling!
Nigeria Manufacturing, Waste management and recycling, Wat…
Gorilla Summit Coffee Development Limited.
Agricultural Raw Materials and Credit at your Fingertips
Uganda Agribusiness
Giving Life to Innovations !
Pakistan ICT, Information technology, Software as a Service
Merlin Sight (Pvt) Ltd
SEER, ability to see the future
Pakistan Agritech, Artificial intelligence, Water utilities
Sustainable Future for Generations to come
Pakistan Information technology
Wadani Milling Factor
Somalia Agribusiness, Food production
Recyclepoints Limited
Waste Recycling, Social Benefits, Circular Economy, Sustainability
Nigeria Environmental services, Sanitation, Waste manageme…
Chitosan Egypt
Middle East & africa's Leading Chitosan solutions providers!
Egypt Agrichemicals, Biotechnology and medical research,…
The Cattlerz
Delivering Satisfactions
Pakistan Animal farming, Food production, Renewable energy
E- Bag powered by Glometrics Private Limited
Greener and Cleaner Tomorrow
Pakistan Clothing and textiles production, Packaging, Waste…
Destiny Farms Limited
We are a growing integrated poultry producer firm in Uganda
Uganda Agribusiness