Investment Associate – Grounded Investment Company

Full Time
  • Full Time
  • Nairobi

Grounded Africa

Investment Associate – Grounded Investment Company

About Grounded Investment Company

Grounded Investment Company (GIC) invests in African food processors who have the potential to become world leaders in producing regenerative organically grown ingredients for global markets. Our mission is to make farming more profitable for African farmers, enabling them to transition to regenerative farming systems while achieving returns for investors. We focus on a key leverage point in the food system: the processing industry.

We typically invest in entrepreneurs who are deeply embedded in their communities, working hard to turn every penny into something valuable. These entrepreneurs might be found in tea hills and spice fields, and our approach to finding, investing in, and supporting them is highly proactive and creative. Once we identify a potential partner, we work closely with them to evaluate both partnership and investment potential, guiding the opportunity through our investment process. Post-investment, we provide intensive, hands-on support to help scale their businesses and deepen their impact.

Role Overview

We are seeking a highly motivated Investment Associate to join our team, preferably based in Nairobi. This role involves comprehensive research to identify optimal investment opportunities across various value chains, supporting the development of our investment pipeline, and managing our portfolio. The successful candidate will also support portfolio activities, ensuring robust growth and impact. We are looking for someone with the potential to advance into a senior position, thereby significantly enhancing our investment team’s capabilities.

Key Responsibilities

Market Research

  • Conduct data collection and research into agricultural value chains, including thorough market research and competitive analysis.
  • Collaborate with the team to identify high-potential opportunities in markets, such as spices, teas, and herbs, that exhibit a strong strategic fit and hold significant impact potential, particularly in terms of smallholder competitive advantage.
  • Work closely with the investment team to provide meaningful recommendations based on data analysis and field visits.

Deal Sourcing and Evaluation

  • Source and assess potential investment opportunities that align with our impact goals.
  • Conduct due diligence on investment prospects, analyzing financial viability, potential risks, and social impact metrics.
  • Support the development of financial models, risk assessments, and investment memoranda for our Internal Impact Committee.

Performance Monitoring

  • Monitor the financial and operational performance of portfolio companies.
  • Track key performance indicators (KPIs) and report on deviations from established benchmarks.

Candidate Profile

  • A bachelor’s degree is required.
  • Minimum of 3 years of relevant work experience.
  • Strong analytical and quantitative skills; comfortable with numbers.
  • Excellent attention to detail and a high degree of accuracy in data analysis.
  • Strong communication skills with the ability to present complex data in a clear and concise manner.
  • Proficiency in Microsoft Excel and data visualization tools.
  • Proactive and self-driven with a demonstrated ability to work independently.
  • Ability and willingness to travel.
  • Preferably based in Nairobi, but candidates located in Southern or East Africa will also be considered.
  • Experience operating in an African business environment.
  • Experience in financial and investment analysis as well as financial modeling skills.
  • Experience in the agricultural/food processing/export sector would be beneficial.
  • A sense of humor and a positive outlook on life and teamwork.

Do you meet most but not all of the above requirements? We strive to create a diverse, inclusive, and authentic work environment. If you are interested in this position but your curriculum vitae does not perfectly match every single qualification, we encourage you to apply anyway.

Additional Information

You will become part of a dynamic and unique international team. A fair remuneration package will be offered to the successful candidate, in accordance with experience. We offer opportunities to learn and develop on the job, and we are flexible and promote a healthy work-life balance.

Application Process

Suitable candidates are invited to apply by submitting their CVs and a short motivation letter to jobs@grounded.co.za. If you have not heard from us within 10 working days, please consider your application unsuccessful. Feel free to circulate this document within your network to any suitable contacts.


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Sample Cover Letter for an Investment Associate

[Your Name]

[Your Address]

[City, State, Zip Code]

[Email Address]

[Date]

Hiring Manager

Grounded Investment Company

[Company Address]

[City, State, Zip Code]

Dear Hiring Manager,

I am writing to express my interest in the Investment Associate position at Grounded Investment Company as advertised. With a strong background in market research, financial analysis, and investment evaluation, coupled with my passion for sustainable agricultural practices, I am excited about the opportunity to contribute to GIC’s mission of transforming African agriculture.

In my previous role at [Previous Company], I conducted in-depth market research and competitive analysis across various agricultural value chains, identifying high-potential investment opportunities. My ability to analyze data, develop financial models, and present complex information clearly has enabled me to support key investment decisions effectively. I am particularly drawn to GIC’s commitment to regenerative farming and its impact-focused investment strategy, which aligns with my values and professional goals.

I am confident that my proactive approach, analytical skills, and dedication to making a meaningful impact in the agricultural sector make me a strong candidate for this role. I look forward to the possibility of discussing how I can contribute to GIC’s continued success.

Thank you for considering my application.

Sincerely,

[Your Name]


How to Be a Successful Applicant for the Investment Associate Role

  1. Understand the Company’s Mission: Familiarize yourself with GIC’s focus on regenerative agriculture and impact investing.
  2. Highlight Relevant Experience: Emphasize your experience in market research, financial analysis, and investment evaluation.
  3. Showcase Analytical Skills: Provide examples of how you have successfully analyzed data and presented findings.
  4. Demonstrate Passion for Agriculture: Share your interest and any relevant experience in the agricultural sector.
  5. Customize Your Application: Tailor your resume and cover letter to reflect GIC’s values and mission.
  6. Prepare for Technical Questions: Be ready to discuss financial modeling, risk assessment, and due diligence processes.
  7. Show Your Proactive Nature: Highlight instances where you took initiative and led projects.
  8. Communicate Clearly: Ensure your application materials and interview responses are clear and concise.
  9. Be Ready to Travel: Express your willingness to travel and adapt to various working environments.
  10. Exhibit a Positive Attitude: Show your enthusiasm for the role and the positive impact you wish to make.

Possible Investment Associate Interview Questions With Answers

1. Can you describe your experience with market research in the agricultural sector?

Example Answer: “In my previous role at [Your Previous Company], I conducted extensive market research on various agricultural value chains. I analyzed market trends, competitive landscapes, and identified high-potential opportunities in the spice and tea sectors. This involved data collection, field visits, and collaborating with stakeholders to provide actionable insights.”

2. How do you approach financial modelling and investment analysis?

Example Answer: “I start by gathering comprehensive data on potential investments, including financial statements, market trends, and risk factors. I then use financial modelling techniques to project future performance and assess viability. My approach includes sensitivity analysis to understand potential risks and impacts, ensuring thorough and reliable evaluations.”

3. Can you give an example of a successful investment you were involved in?

Example Answer: “At [Your Previous Company], I was part of a team that invested in a smallholder tea processing company. I conducted due diligence, developed financial models, and helped draft the investment memorandum. Post-investment, I monitored their performance and provided strategic support, which led to a 30% increase in production and a significant expansion of their market reach.”

4. How do you ensure effective communication of complex data?

Example Answer: “I focus on clarity and simplicity when presenting complex data. Using data visualization tools like Excel and Tableau, I create intuitive charts and graphs that highlight key insights. Additionally, I tailor my presentations to my audience, ensuring that I explain technical terms and focus on the most relevant data points.”

5. What strategies do you use to identify high-potential investment opportunities?

Example Answer: “I employ a combination of market research, networking, and field visits to identify high-potential opportunities. I stay informed about industry trends and collaborate with local experts and stakeholders. This proactive approach helps me uncover unique opportunities that align with our impact goals.”

6. How do you handle challenges and setbacks in investment projects?

Example Answer: “I approach challenges with a problem-solving mindset. I analyze the root cause, consult with team members, and develop a plan to address the issue. For instance, in a recent project, unexpected regulatory changes affected our investment timeline. I worked with our legal team to navigate the new regulations and adjusted our strategy to mitigate risks.”

7. Can you discuss a time when you had to work independently on a critical project?

Example Answer: “In my previous role, I was tasked with conducting a solo due diligence on a potential investment in the herb sector. I gathered data, conducted field visits, and developed a comprehensive report. My independent analysis was instrumental in our decision to invest, and the project has since yielded excellent returns.”

8. How do you stay updated with industry trends and developments?

Example Answer: “I regularly read industry publications, attend conferences, and participate in webinars. Additionally, I network with professionals in the field to exchange insights and stay informed about the latest trends and innovations in the agricultural and investment sectors.”

9. How do you balance multiple projects and priorities?

Example Answer: “I prioritize tasks based on their urgency and impact. I use project management tools to organize my work and ensure that I meet deadlines. Regular communication with my team also helps in aligning priorities and managing expectations effectively.”

10. Why are you interested in working with Grounded Investment Company?

Example Answer: “I am passionate about GIC’s mission to support African farmers and promote regenerative farming systems. The opportunity to work with innovative entrepreneurs and make a significant impact aligns perfectly with my career goals and values. I am excited about the chance to contribute to GIC’s vision and growth.”


Wishing you the best in your application! Our website is committed to attracting and retaining the best employees from all races and backgrounds in our continued effort to become a better development partner. We are an equal opportunity employer and do not charge any application/recruitment fee, whether refundable or not.


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