The essential innovation the Challenges Group provides is to simplify the interface between companies, markets and investors. We are able to do this by deploying a robust implementation process, based on nearly two decades worth of experience of enterprise development in emerging economies and bespoke Marketplace technology.


AquarrowYouth skills development

Youth volunteer enterprise support is delivered through the International Citizen Service (ICS). By pairing in country and UK volunteers the Challenges Group is making a difference in some of the world’s poorest communities. The impetus provided by the DFID funded ICS programme is creating a mass in-country, on the ground deployment of young people. With youth contributing to company growth, the enterprises they support reinvest additional income, driving growth and opportunities not just in their organisations but in the social-economic ecosystem as a whole.

The launch of CG: in-country entities , i.e. CG:Zambia, CG:Uganda and CG:Ghana catalyses the impact of this initial work, creating further connections and focused opportunities by connecting these enterprises to public and private sector organisations in the respective countries.

Purple Arrow  Start up – Incubate

Working with partners the Challenges Group has identified two delivery models:

  1. Linking grass roots projects to an SME identified by CW, building on the existing, established partnerships of International Service at community level. Thus, through the support of an ICS team, enabling small organisations who have reached market readiness access to markets, and business development opportunities (Looking up the supply chain).
  2. Identifying local grass roots enterprise projects through an SME determined by CW and deploying an ICS team managed by sister delivery agencies such as international development charity International Service to assess and support its development (looking down the supply chain).

GreenArrowGrowth – Accelerate

Challenges Worldwide, part of the Challenges Group, is a founder member of ACRE (Access to Capital for Rural Enterprises). This is a platform which allows international development charities to provide technical support and access to capital to small and medium enterprises with growth potential.

Businesses within ACRE must be able to demonstrate a clear social and economic impact on their communities and the markets in which they operate.


These processes are underpinned by Technolgy and Research:

Technology iconChallenges Technology


Challenges Marketplace is a safe and secure reporting platform that is provided alongside our consultancy services.

Challenges College   supports quality learning, providing over 900 learning tools including access to Chartered Management Institute training and resources through a cloud based educational technology platform.

Together they:

Unlock follow-on support

  • Senior business mentors help with strategy, aims and objectives Challenges staff, volunteers and senior mentors offer onsite implementation support
  • Challenges consultants offer technical, industry specific consulting
  • The Challenges process supports investment readiness, helping you access the correct form of finance

Unlock access to appropriate finance

  • Small scale grant capital up to £5,000
  • Local Bank Debt External
  • Private Investment (debt or equity available from a variety of investors)
  • Unlock trade links
  • Access to Local and International Trade Partners across commodity and supply chains MNC procurement opportunities


research iconChallenges Research 


Research is critical to ensure that people and technology are deployed in a way that will be most effective in supporting market led approaches to community self reliance – exploring issues of gender, conflict and access to markets, to move from poverty to investment in the countries we operate in.

The Challenges Group works with British and American universities, and with host organisations across the world, to bring students an exciting opportunity to work directly with practitioners in their chosen field. The aim is for students to offer fresh, new thinking whilst learning from those who have been working in the industry for a number of years. This mutually beneficial partnership will not only support host organisations with their own development but also contribute to the students’ knowledge, academic research and employability. This leaflet explains the process more clearly.