Social Venture Fund Internship – Mercy Corps

By March 27, 2018 No Comments



 May – August 2018 (Flexible)


INTERNS SUPERVISOR & CONTACT INFORMATION: Head of Venture Growth or Managing Director, Social Venture Fund


Mercy Corps responsibilities

For the duration of this internship assignment the intern will receive:

  • $670/mo stipend
  • Airplane tickets
  • ISOS Emergency Med-Evac Coverage
  • Access to all investment documents, online tools, entrepreneurs, and Mercy Corps stakeholders necessary to complete the assignment
  • Access to all of Mercy Corps’ online tools, materials and communications

Intern responsibilities

Intern will remain responsible for all costs associated with:

  • Travel
  • Visa
  • Housing accommodations
  • Medical insurance
  • Immunizations
  • All other costs associated with this internship


Mercy Corps is a global nonprofit organization that empowers people to survive through crisis, build better lives and transform their communities for good.

Mercy Corps sees complex global challenges as an invitation: to pioneer paths out of poverty, to forge new partnerships, to create solutions that break through entrenched challenges. But the traditional grant-based model of funding international development can be limiting. It rarely promotes the flexibility and experimentation required to test new models — models that could deliver social benefit to millions of people in the developing world.

Mercy Corps’ Social Venture Fund provides early-stage financing and post-investment support to accelerate the growth of scalable, self-sustaining businesses that improve people’s lives in an enduring way. We do this by pairing our deep, on-the-ground insight into local customs and markets with a unique blend of capital and targeted business expertise.

Capitalized by philanthropic contributions, we structured the Mercy Corps Social Venture Fund so that our highest-potential emerging ventures receive the early-stage support needed to learn, adapt and grow.

The Social Venture Fund Internship involves working with the Social Ventures Team on post-investment support, pipeline development, and due diligence.  Based in Nairobi, Kenya, the SVF Intern will work with the Venture Growth Unit to provide post-investment support to portfolio companies operating in East Africa. In coordination with the Head of Venture Growth, the SVF Intern will define, scope and engage with portfolio ventures to provide technical assistance, strategic or operational advisory, or other focused support.  She/he will assist in pipeline development by identifying and analyzing promising social enterprises that are developing innovative solutions to global development challenges that meet SVF investment criteria. She/he will source and contribute to due diligence and, when possible, assist in deal structuring and execution.

Venture Growth

  • Post-Investment Support: The intern will provide post-investment support to East Africa portfolio companies.
  • Based on portfolio company needs, Venture Growth priorities, and skillset, the intern will work with portfolio company founder(s) to scope project(s) and deliverables during the first phase of the internship.
  • The intern will work on a key strategic or operational concern for the portfolio companies to help the company grow and achieve its impact potential and financial targets. The intern will work closely with the portfolio company’s management. The intern will engage internal Mercy Corps resources, and external partners (board members, co-investors, etc.) to leverage support as needed.
  • Depending on how the fund and the start-ups evolve, the projects and deliverables may also evolve.

Pipeline Development & Due Diligence

  • Sourcing: The intern will identify prospect companies through networking with founders, co-investors, incubators, accelerators and other ecosystem stakeholders.
  • Landscaping: The intern will support the mapping of investment opportunities in specific priority sector(s) for the SV Fund.
  • Due diligence: The intern will review and analyze business plans, financial models, and investment proposals. The intern will evaluate investment opportunities in terms of entrepreneur potential, market validation, impact potential, and alignment with Mercy Corps’ priorities and capabilities. The intern will make recommendations on investment opportunities to the Social Venture Team and Investment Committee, as applicable.
  • Deal structuring and execution: The intern will assist in preparation of investment memoranda, and other deal documentation and structuring, as applicable.
  • Deliverables: Sector landscape document and strategy recommendations, updated prospect database, due diligence reports, investment memoranda, etc., as applicable.


The intern will work closely with the Mercy Corps Social Venture Team throughout the period. The intern will participate in weekly Social Venture team calls.

The intern will also coordinate with Mercy Corps program and regional leadership in East & Southern Africa Region.


Through the internship, the intern will acquire:

  • Exposure to Kenyan/East African entrepreneurial ecosystem, tech sector, investors/venture capital, and government and policy actors.
  • Experience in investment landscaping, sourcing, and analysis.
  • Experience in post-investment support and portfolio management.
  • Exposure to innovation in the development sector.
  • Experience researching and landscaping a specific sector in East Africa region.


  • Strategy recommendations
  • Kenya investment prospect database
  • Due diligence reports and investment memorandums


  • MBA or equivalent experience
  • 5 years experience developing businesses either in management consulting, finance or as part of an enterprise.
  • Direct experience in the management and operations of a business and a successful record of implementation.
  • Entrepreneurial mindset
  • Experience with development of a business from early stage conceptualization through scale
  • Strong financial modeling, business planning, due diligence, competitive analysis, and valuation skills and experience
  • Excellent problem-solving skills and ability to get things done
  • Strong strategic thinking skills.  Able to navigate complex environments and develop a clear, focused, and ambitious vision.
  • Prior demonstrated interest in creating positive social impact
  • Ability to work collaboratively, build trust and facilitate change in organizations
  • Experience working across a distributed team

Mercy Corps interns and volunteers represent the agency both during and outside of work hours and are expected to conduct themselves in a professional manner and respect local laws, customs and MC’s policies, procedures, and values at all times and in all in-country venues.

Diversity is powerful. To achieve transformational change, we seek out team members with different origins, beliefs, backgrounds and ways of thinking. Diversity helps us unlock complexity.

Please find more information here.

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