Application Process
Due Diligence​
Funding Award
Monitoring & Reporting
Funding Processes

Funding Processes

Prospero works through “intervention partnerships”, arrangements whereby we work with private and public sector organisations on joint projects that fit both parties’ strategic objectives.

Prospero offers support to our partners in form of co-investment of a combination of resources, time, money and effort to introduce new products, services or business models in a specific focus sector market or value chain. While our partner invests in the hope and expectation of future profits and financial returns to shareholders, Prospero invests for development returns which mostly focus on; new or more secure jobs, supporting people to cope with effects of climate change, promoting a green economy and increasing income opportunities for Zambians.

There are four types of intervention partnerships, two of which involve financial support, and two of which are non-financial.

Financial support

Investment Grant

Prospero provides financial support to our partner to incentivize investment and offset some of the risks of business innovation.

Technical Assistance Grant

Prospero contributes to a partner’s costs of accessing specialist technical expertise during the design and/or implementation of the project.


Facilitation Agreement

Prospero supports partners to make new, beneficial business linkages with suppliers, customers, finance providers, or investors.

Cooperation Agreement

Prospero works alongside the partner to achieve a shared strategic objective

Application Process

Applicant: Submit a concept note

The first step of the application process is for the applicant to submit a concept note (using the Prospero application form) which will give a broad outline of the applicant’s business ideas as well as providing information about the business and business owner.

Prospero: Assess the concept note

Prospero staff screen all concept notes received and applicants with viable and innovative business ideas that fall within our strategic objectives are added to a shortlist. If the concept is unlikely to attract funding, Prospero will inform applicants and explain why the proposed business plan does not fit the Prospero strategy or funding priorities.

Applicant: Submit a Proposal and business plan

Short-listed applicants will be asked to submit a more comprehensive Proposal and Business Plan, including the budget. Prospero staff will provide support and guidance on how to make sure that the Proposal and Business Plan is strengthened to increase the chances of being funded.

Due Diligence​


Funding Award

Monitoring & Reporting


The proposal evaluation and due diligence processes described above are completed in parallel and typically take anywhere from 4 to 6 weeks to complete, depending on the complexity of the proposed project and the ability of the applicant to respond to Prospero’s application requirements.

Applicants should never assume that a proposal will be successful and should not enter into any commitments contingent on the grant award or start to implement the project before the grant agreement has been signed. Any such commitments made by the applicant or any project expenditure incurred by the applicant prior to the grant award being signed by both parties are entirely on the applicant’s account and at the applicant’s own risk.

Due Diligence​

Compliance Due Diligence

Staff from the Grants and Compliance department conduct due diligence to assess whether the applicant’s business meets Prospero’s eligibility criteria. During due diligence, a delivery risk assessment is undertaken to look at the potential partner’s capacity to deliver the proposed project.

Monitoring And Evaluation Due Diligence

Staff from the M&E department assess the applicant’s reporting capacity and identify areas where the Prospero M&E team can offer support. During the M&E due diligence, the project’s developmental results targets are agreed and set.


Project Site Visits

During the selection stage, Prospero staff engage with the applicants whose proposal and Business Plans have been strengthened understand their model and give guidance on the preparation of the Business Plans implementation.

Investment Committee Selection

Final Business Plans are presented to the Prospero Grant Selection Committee who meet and decide whether the proposal and Business Plans delivers value for money and fit the Prospero strategy or funding priorities.

Funding Award​

Assess the proposal

The Proposal and Business Plan is presented to the Prospero Grant Selection
Committee who meet and decide whether or not the project should receive support. In the case of high value projects, the Selection Committee’s decision may be subject to approval by the Prospero Board and/or the relevant funder. Prospero will inform applicants of the outcome of the final selection process, and if the application is rejected will explain why this has happened.

Induction meeting

Successful SMEs are invited for an Induction meeting which is held virtually or physically to review set milestones and targets. During this meeting, the reporting obligations and frequency of reporting are made clear to the SME prior to signing the contract. The company is also informed about the initial baseline survey that will need to be filled in before the disbursement of funds.


The contract/agreement signing is done soon after the Induction meeting and it
formalizes obligations and deliverables committed to by the grantee to meet all
contracting terms and inform disbursement of funds.

Fund Disbursements

Disbursements of funds to the partners are based on milestone achievements, funds are only paid when Prospero has verified that a milestone has been fully completed. Milestone schedules and due dates agreed to at the grant awarding and contracting stage.

Monitoring And Reporting


Grantees are contractually obliged to self-report every quarter using the reporting template provided by Prospero. Grantees are also obliged to send a closeout report after the grant has ended and may be asked to provide reports after the grant period has expired.

Monitoring And Evaluation

The Prospero Monitoring and Evaluation Manager leads monitoring visits to the projects every quarter to verify reported data and assess technical progress towards achieving milestones and targets.