TechnoServe South Africa invites your firm to participate in this competitive solicitation of bids to carry out a regular financial audit and report of the TechnoServe project – Technical Assistance Facility for the African Agriculture Fund (AAF) for the financial year (s) ending 2012 (project inception) to financial year end 2016 (to date).

Background and Project Purpose:
The Technical Assistance Facility (TAF), operated by TechnoServe, is a grant-based facility that supports capacity building for Africa Agriculture Fund’s (AAF) portfolio companies aiming to improve linkages between outgrowers and the companies through agriculture value chain projects in communities where the AAF invests. TAF also provides technical assistance to SME agribusinesses invested by the AAF SME sub-fund to help them access and utilize AAF SME Fund investments.

As the TAF Implementing Agency, TechnoServe works with the AAF fund manager teams (Phatisa and Databank) to identify technical assistance (TA) needs of the target groups, develop recommendations for TA support, identify and contract TA providers to deliver this support, and manage the delivery of the TA. It is estimated that TAF, working with AAF, will reach 20,000 smallholder farmers or micro-entrepreneurs in Africa.

The overall objective of the AAF TAF is to support the medium-term economic development of SMEs and small farmers operating in the agriculture in Africa. It will do this by enabling small businesses, small-scale farmers, farmers’ organizations and cooperatives to benefit, either directly or indirectly, from investment by AAF. The project is primarily funded by the EU, managed by IFAD and implemented by TechnoServe with additional contributions from the Italian Development
Corporation, United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO) and the Alliance for a Green Revolution in Africa (AGRA).

As the TAF Implementing Agency, TechnoServe can fund the following types of projects:
• The Agricultural Value Chain (AVC) component represents 80% of TA funds and incorporates a holistic value chain approach.
• The SME Component represents 20% of TA funds and is intended to enable small SME agribusinesses to attract and take full advantage of capital investments from the AAF SME Fund.

General Requirements & Scope of Work:

1. Objectives and scope of the audit

1.1. Financial Report: The first objective is to audit the financial statements of TAF as submitted to IFAD from financial year ending 2012 to date of financial year ending 2016 and to express an audit opinion on whether the financial report is in accordance with IFAD´s conditions for financial reporting as stipulated in the agreement between TAF and IFAD.
Attached as Annex 1.

The audit report should express opinion as to whether or not proper books of account have been kept by TAF and whether the spend report is in agreement with the books of account as well as agreed categories of spend. The auditor should assess if the financial reports of TAF fairly present income and expenditure relating to the project in conformity with the requirements of the donor (IFAD).

The report should also express opinion as to whether or not TAF has established and maintained an internal control structure, necessary to provide reasonable assurance that adopted policies and prescribed procedures are adhered to for the prevention of error and irregularities, including fraud and illegal acts.

1.2. Procurement: The second objective is to confirm whether TAF has adhered to the procurement guidelines as annexed to the agreement. Attached as annex 2. The auditor shall review a sample of procurements to see if procurement policies have been followed and to confirm if the procurements actually took place. This includes confirming suppliers prices are consistent as those in quotes and invoices, that payments to suppliers were actually issued and received, and confirming if goods or services were actually delivered per the documentation.

1.3. Compliance with donor regulations regarding tax: The third objective is to assess the status of TAF regarding VAT payments in South Africa and in turn compliance with the General Conditions of the EU Contribution Agreement that govern the overall TAF grant. We are seeking a professional opinion on including tax payments as ‘eligible’ expenditures against the grant if TAF is confirmed to not be in a position to reclaim taxes in South Africa and applicable regulations authorise coverage of taxes.

2. The reporting
The scope of the audit shall be stated in the report and the methodology used shall be presented.

The reporting shall be signed by the responsible auditor (not just the audit firm) and title.

The reporting from the auditor shall include an audit report report/management letter with audit findings and weaknesses identified during the audit process. The auditor shall make recommendations to address any weaknesses identified. The recommendations should be presented in priority.

Period of performance
The period of performance of any contract resulting from this solicitation is anticipated to begin on 3 April 2017 and conclude in one month by the end of April 2017. Proposals shall detail the estimated length of time required to accomplish all requirements, with detail on individual activity implementation dates, as referenced in the Scope of Work.

Specification of the Auditor

The auditor should:

  1. Be an external, independent and qualified auditor that adhere to the International Standards of Accounting.
  2. Provide authorized public accountants or chartered accountants with competence to perform audits in accordance with international standards issued by IAASB (The International Auditing and Assurance Board).
  3. Have documented resources, knowledge and experience to perform assignment/s within the requested area/s of competence/s.
  4. Have extensive experience of auditing foreign funded development co-operation projects.
  5. Have very good knowledge regarding local procedures, rules and regulation.

Criteria for selection

The evaluation of each response to this RFP will be based on the requirements set out in the solicitation and any addenda thereto. At the sole discretion of TNS, the top proposals may be selected for follow-up questions or to provide an oral presentation.

Technical Proposal – 30%
Project Approach/Methodology
Quality of Work Plan
Project Schedule
Project Deliverables


10 total

Management Proposal – 30%
Project Team Structure and Internal Controls
Staff Qualifications/Experience
Experience of the Firm


10 total
Cost Proposal – 40% 10 total

TechnoServe reserves the right to award the contract to the organization whose proposal is deemed to be in the best interest of TNS and the Donor.

The Organization with the winning proposal will be notified in writing. Those who were not selected may or may not be notified, at the sole discretion of TNS.

Bidding Procedure

Qualifying firms should submit electronic technical and financial proposals, scanned copies of practicing certificates from relevant South African bodies no later than 31st March 2017 to Kirsten Woods, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Terms and Conditions

  1. The Request for Proposal is not and shall not be considered an offer by TechnoServe.
  2. All responses must be received on or before the date and time indicated on the RFP. All late responses will be rejected.
  3. All unresponsive responses will be rejected.
  4. All proposals will be considered binding offers. Prices proposed must be valid for entire period provided by respondent.
  5. All awards will be subject to TNS contractual terms and conditions and contingent on the availability of donor funding.
  6. TNS reserves the right to accept or reject any proposal or cancel the solicitation process at any time, and shall have no liability to the proposing organizations submitting proposals for such rejection or cancellation of the request for proposals.
  7. TNS reserves the right to accept all or part of the proposal when award is provided.
  8. All information provided by TNS in this RFP is offered in good faith. Individual items are subject to change at any time, and all bidders will be provided with notification of any changes. TNS is not responsible or liable for any use of the information submitted by bidders or for any claims asserted therefrom.
  9. TNS reserves the right to require any bidder to enter into a non-disclosure agreement.
  10. The bidders are solely obligated to pay for any costs, of any kind whatsoever, which may be incurred by bidder or any third parties, in connection with the Response. All responses and supporting documentation shall become the property of TNS, subject to claims of confidentiality in respect of the response and supporting documentation, which have been clearly marked confidential by the bidder.


All proposals shall:

  1. Be in the English language.
  2. Contain detailed cost in US Dollar, with applicable Tax/Charges clearly identified.
  3. Provide requested payment terms and conditions.
  4. Describe the qualifications, experience and capabilities of the firm in providing the type of services being request by this RFP. Resumes or CVs of “key personnel” shall be submitted as an attachment.
  5. Include a contact name, email address, and telephone number to facilitate communication between TNS and the submitting organization.
  6. A brief outline of the organization and services offered, including:
    • Full legal name, jurisdiction of incorporation and address of the company.
    • Full legal name and country of citizenry of company’s President and / or Chief Executive Officer, and all other officers and senior managers of the company.
    • Year business was established


End of RFP


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