Afbeelding: Vacancy Operational Director

Job opening: Operational Director

Looking for a passionate leader with 7+ years of operational experience in managing teams in the field of banking/lending and impact investment. She/he will co-design the strategic direction of the newly established SME Impact Fund II, build the investment teams and set up the new country offices in Kenya and Uganda. Later, the operational director will also be responsible for the operations of SME Impact Fund’s country offices in Tanzania, Kenya, and Uganda.



Founded in 2013, SIF is a pioneering impact-first fund supplying nearly 100 rural agri-businesses in Tanzania with loans and technical assistance, altogether disbursing EUR 15 million in small ticket, local currency loans in food commodities. By doing so SIF has enabled a total of 3,000 jobs in agri-business and impacted the lives of 20,000 smallholder farmers, delivering best in class cost-effective impact. Over the past 9 years SIF has successfully built a very committed, local investment team with a multi-cultural background in Tanzania whilst growing a sustainable investment portfolio.

Now, after successfully gaining extensive experience in financing and growing agri-SMEs in food commodities in Tanzania, SIF II is well-positioned to triple its fund size. It will scale up its operations and outreach by expanding to other East African countries i.e., Kenya and Uganda while still serving the same SME-segment. By doing so, it will realize its vision to create a sustainable and inclusive finance model for missing middle agri-SMEs in Africa.



The Operational Director will shape and lead the three country teams, each consisting of a country manager, investments officers and back-office staff. Furthermore, impact & technical assistance (TA) officers are seconded from the TA-foundation to country teams and functionally, report to country managers. She/he will be responsible to successfully build and manage an EUR 20 million loan portfolio and help agri-SMEs to grow their business, create jobs and generate impact on smallholder farmer level.

SIF seeks a talented, entrepreneurial, purposeful, and experienced professional who will lead the country teams in realizing its ambitious goals. The position of Operational Director is vital to the success of SIF and works closely together with the Managing Director of SIF.



  • Co-design and implement SIF’s expansion strategy in East Africa.
  • Build and lead dynamic teams of impact investment professionals.
  • Create a management culture of result orientation and taking responsibilities.
  • Design product offerings geared toward the needs of the agri-SME market.
  • Formulate the sales and marketing strategy.
  • Initiate and coordinate the development of new business.
  • Strengthening working relations with relevant actors and organizations and participate in important networks.
  • Set and achieve growth targets aligned with SIF’s ambition.
  • Enhance operational efficiency through IT-systems and processes.
  • Represent the country teams in the Regional Investment Committee meetings.
  • Take initiatives to increase costs efficiency.



  • Master’s degree in banking, business, accounting, or relevant field.
  • 7 - 10+ years of professional experience. Relevant experience may include retail and/or SME Banking, acquisition, loan restructuring and debt collection.
  • 5+ years’ successful management experience in an operational setting within a bank, fund or financial institution.
  • Excellent ability to enhance and implement work processes and IT systems.
  • Fluent in English.



  • Experience with agri-business and/or SME assessments in East Africa.
  • Proven ability to manage diverse teams.
  • Knowledge of gender lens investing.
  • Fluent in Swahili.



  • Entrepreneurial people manager.
  • Highly motivated initiative-taker.
  • Excellent verbal and written communication skills.
  • Executive with strong can-do attitude.


SIF has an open culture and short lines of communication where input and initiative are appreciated. SIF is committed to equal employment opportunity regardless of color, race, religion, gender and disability.



A competitive package including comprehensive benefits is offered.



SIF can support a work permit for this role. However, citizens or permanent residents of East Africa are preferred. This position involves regular travelling in East Africa.



15th of October 2022



Preferably December 2022


Are you a loyal and dynamic professional with a passion to help agri-entrepreneurs grow their business in East Africa and create impact? 

Then send your cover letter and CV to Allert Mentink via email:

Note! A cover letter is required. 



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