About BIF

The Business Innovation Facility (BIF) is a five-year (2014 - 2019) DFID-funded market systems development programme that aims to improve the lives of the poor in three countries: Malawi, Myanmar and Nigeria.

BIF works to identify and address constraints in selected markets, providing technical assistance (and some grant funding) to businesses and other market players.

We provide support to develop and replicate business models that make markets more inclusive, resulting in greater opportunities, better access and improved growth for the poor and disadvantaged people who engage in them. 


How we work

The programme follows the Market Systems approach which can be briefly summarised as follows -

  • Undertake market assessments to inform the selection of focus markets
  • Develop in-depth Market Analysis and Strategies
  • Design interventions to address identified constraints
  • Identify partners and co-create projects
  • Select expert consultants to support the delivery of projects
  • Pilot the projects
  • Monitor and evaluate
  • Support adoption, adaption and expansion of the commercially sustainable innovations

In order to expand its global reach, BIF is also launching new funding opportunities for innovative projects, identified through collaboration with private sector companies, which aim to improve the lives of the poor. This funding will be disbursed under two ‘windows’:

  • The Business Partnerships Fund will provide support for projects and new business models, led by multinational companies, with the potential to make markets more inclusive. Read more here.
  • The Company-Led Window applies the Market Systems approach described above but, instead of starting with a focus country, selects markets to investigate based on an alternative entry point: companies that are innovating. Read more here.



BIF has designed a robust results management approach to monitor and measure results in order to prove impact. Capturing key information on the results of interventions also helps to drive programme performance and value for money. The system has been designed in line with the DCED Standard for Results Measurement, which is considered leading practice in the enterprise development field.


BIF Pilot

BIF ran a pilot between 2010 and 2013 which spanned a range of countries and sectors, engaging low-income people through a variety of innovative business models. For more information, visit our Archive.


Development Tracker

BIF's progress is recorded on the UK Government's Development Tracker, which allows you to find and explore detailed information on international development projects funded by the UK Government. The tracker is built using open data published by UK Government and partners, using the International Aid Transparency Initiative (IATI) standard. The IATI standard is an international standard for international development data and allows ready comparison of information from different donors.


We have a zero-tolerance policy to fraud and corruption on our programme. Should you have any queries relating to the management of BIF and/or our policies, please do not hesitate to get in touch with the team using the 'Contact Us' form.


Our Partners