For Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) | Take-a-Stake


Take-a-Stake aims to turn the cross-cutting challenges of water, sanitation, hygiene (WASH), waste, and linked sectors, into opportunities via investment and advisory support for entrepreneurs, especially small and medium enterprises (SMEs).

SMEs, a subset of private sector companies, are commercially viable businesses, typically from 5 to 250 employees and looking for investments ranging about from €20,000 to €2 million. They have strong potential for growth–creating economic, social, and environmental benefits. SMEs are best suited to serve the needs of the emerging poor, establishing a new middle class, and providing basic goods and services. Take-a-Stake is currently active in India, Kenya, and Uganda.

Learn more about our expertise in innovative financing.

Our goals

Mobilise investments in SMEs to strengthen and upscale the supply and value chain of WASH and waste services

Within the diverse SME segment in the three countries, Take-A-Stake targets the ‘missing middle’ of small businesses. In many cases, these small businesses lack access to capital. Take-a-Stake is addressing this gap by:

Offering a mix of investment instruments

Raised from public and private entities.

Build capacity with local businesses

Working with local partners to provide technical assistance and capacity building.

Mobilise co-investments via collaborations

With local and international financial institutions and banks, aiming to prove the investment case for the tricky WASH and waste sectors.

Building blocks

Our activities to support small and medium enterprises (SMEs)

Our Take-a-Stake programme is mobilising investments for local entrepreneurs. Activities to support this include:

  • Conducting studies on the WASH and waste sectors to understand the dynamics, investment risks and opportunities, and the potential impact of the fund via its investees.
  • Identifying and analysing 100+ financially sustainable small and growing businesses (SGBs) that need more than €100 million in capital to expand and increase their impact.
  • Building relationships with potential investors and co-investors.
  • Starting to build impact measurement and portfolio management tools.


The outputs from this project will be utilized in other WASTE projects. This programme is a pilot for a potentially full-scale investment fund. Once successfully incubated, we presume the lifespan would be at least 10 years to contribute to sustainable regional economic growth and employment.

The Take-a-Stake programme is active from 2021-24.

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This project is funded by SIDA

With the following partners involved:

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Ysb logo1 black e1639637130954
Ysb logo1 black e1639637130954
Ysb logo1 black e1639637130954
Ysb logo1 black e1639637130954
Ysb logo1 black e1639637130954
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Are you interested in the project and would like to receive more information?

You can also visit the Take-a-Stake website for more information.