Last updated February 13, 2012

Partner Description:

KOMAZA is a social enterprise founded on converting Africa’s drylands into productive family farms in the eastern part of Kenya. The organization equips local farmers with the supplies and training they need to plant fast-growing trees on their unused land. This generates income for their families and creates a sustainable wood supply for local markets.

KOMAZA operates through village-based farmer networks, where it identifies interested farmer groups and offers them financing to purchase inputs and tools -- like seedlings and fertilizers. This enables farmers to turn unproductive land into valuable tree farms. They can then reinvest the profit they earn to start their own businesses, pay school fees for their children, or build better homes. To date, KOMAZA has supported the planting of over 4,600 tree farms run by families in rural Kenya.

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Kenya's vast unmet demand for wood products presents an opportunity for farmers to plant their way out of poverty. By uniting growers and wood customers, KOMAZA helps farmers generate more income while breaking the cycle of environmental degradation.

Kiva lenders’ flexible, risk-tolerant capital enables KOMAZA to offer affordable financing to farmers, and to scale faster as an organization to impact more people.

A unique lending approach:

KOMAZA contracts each farmer to plant a half-acre of 250 trees on their dry, degraded land. Once the trees have been in the ground for six years, the organization begins harvesting annually. It purchases all of the farmer’s trees and sells them as high-margin wood products, providing the farmer with new income and enabling KOMAZA to recover its costs.

The trees then grow back, yielding decades of harvests and life-changing income from a single planting. Since 2006, KOMAZA has averaged 250% annual growth, reached thousands of farmers, and planted more than 1.1 million trees.

See the story of Ruth and Raphael, KOMAZA farmers, here:

Watch a video about the organization’s work in the field here:

KOMAZA does not require any direct financial investment from farmers. This model allows the organization to target very poor farmers who do not have extra cash on hand to purchase inputs, but it also means that KOMAZA must secure upfront funding to finance tree farms. Kiva capital will address this need.

Kiva's current President, Premal Shah, is married to the President of KOMAZA, Ayesha Wagle. Premal was not involved with Kiva's decision to partner with KOMAZA, as he does not sit on Kiva's Investment Committee or make any decisions related to KOMAZA's funding on Kiva.

Media courtesy of KOMAZA.

Repayment Performance on Kiva

    This Field Partner All Kiva Partners
  Start Date On Kiva Jan 23, 2013 Oct 12, 2005
Total Loans $500,000 $590,831,750
Amount of raised Inactive loans $0 $819,825
Number of raised Inactive loans 0 696
Amount of Paying Back Loans $499,000 $116,310,325
Number of Paying Back Loans 153 123,737
Amount of Ended Loans $1,000 $473,701,600
Number of Ended Loans 2 601,061
Delinquency Rate 0.00% 4.21%
Amount in Arrears $0 $3,160,641
Outstanding Portfolio $435,000 $75,153,836
Number of loanDelinquent 0 14,150
Default Rate 0.00% 1.13%
Amount of Ended Loans Defaulted $0 $5,347,284
Amount of Ended Loans $1,000 $473,701,600
Number of Ended Loans Defaulted 0 16,817
Currency Exchange Loss Rate 0.00% 0.09%
Amount of Currency Exchange Loss $0 $536,853
Refund Rate 0.90% 0.77%
Amount of Refunded Loans $4,500 $4,537,625
Number of Refunded Loans 1 5,064

Loan Characteristics On Kiva

    This Field Partner All Kiva Partners
  Loans to Women Borrowers 60.90% 74.18%
Average Loan Size $500 $418
Average Individual Loan Size $500 $655
Average Group Loan Size $3,343 $1,828
Average number of borrowers per group 6.7 8
Average GDP per capita (PPP) in local country $1,800 $3,430
Average Loan Size / GDP per capita (PPP) 27.78% 12.20%
Average Time to Fund a Loan 3.94 days 5.6 days
Average Dollars Raised Per Day Per Loan $126.92 $74.74
  Average Loan Term 119.23 months 10.35 months

Journaling Performance on Kiva

    This Field Partner All Kiva Partners
  Total Journals 65 295,934
  Journaling Rate 0.00% 42.37%
  Average Number of Comments Per Journal 0.00 0.08
  Average Number of Recommendations Per Journal 0.00 1.87

Borrowing Cost Comparison (based on 2011 data)

    This Field Partner Median for MFI's in Country All Kiva Partners
  Average Cost to Borrower N/A 36.00% PY 33.27% PY
  Profitability (return on assets) N/A 0.5% -1.45%
  Average Loan Size (% of per capita income) N/A 56.00% 40.88%

Country Fast Facts

Field Partner Staff

Ellie Taylor
Erin Tyburski