Introducing Frontier Market Scouts
So what is the Frontier Market Scouts program at MIIS?
Introduction and Overview
The Frontier Market Scouts Program is being developed by the Monterey Institute of International Studies, the Sanghata Institute for Social Entrepreneurship and Investment, and an expanding network of international partners.Â Its objective is to realize the concept of a self-sustaining ecosystem for social enterprise development and investment in low-income countries by with entrepreneurs in the â€œmissing middle,â€ those ventures that are too large to receive microfinance funds and too small to attract traditional venture funding. Â The programÂ pilotÂ takes placeÂ Â January through August of 2011.Â
The pilot begins with a 90-hour training program at the Monterey Institute in January for over a dozen individuals who have been selected as the first cohort of Scouts.Â In February, they will be placed with social venture enterprises in a number of countries for four to six-month assignments and will return to Monterey in August, where they will participate in a capstone team learning program.
The Scouts have been selected from a pool of students with a solid background in business and management, an enthusiasm for applied, immersive learning, and a strong belief in enterprise and market development as a means to a sustainable improvement of living standards.Â Their assignments will vary based on the partner organization with which they are matched, but each will work directly with indigenous entrepreneurs with an overarching goal of generating high-quality deal flows for social impact investment.Â Â Â Â
The Training Program
The January training program was delivered by experienced professionals in the social and commercial venture investment industries.Â Monterey Institute faculty have partnered with these individuals on the pedagogical elements of their offerings, with the final curriculum consisting of the following courses:
- Understanding social investors (15 hours)
- Managing small and growing businesses in frontier markets (30 hours)
- Investing in social enterprises in frontier markets (15 hours)
- The art of learning from failures (15 hours)
- Professional preparation for the challenging frontier market environment (15 hours)
Once the Scouts have completed the training,Â tenÂ willÂ Â complete an assignment tied to one of several partner organizations, including GrayGhost Ventures, Wazobia Investments, and Root Change.