Theory of Change

We provide support services for investment promotion agencies advancing shared value creation in East Africa.

Foreign direct investment (FDI) can be catalytic, mobilizing capital and technology to spur growth, expand productive capacity and diversify economies. Investment Promotion Agencies (IPAs) play an important role in attracting these investments. As an intermediary body between the public and private sectors, IPAs are often the public face of governments seeking to increase investment, promote economic and social development.

SEA & the IPA

This unique, intermediary role of IPAs underlies their importance in not only advancing FDI but also in promoting shared value creation and inclusive socio-economic development through the alignment of key social objectives and private sector opportunity.

Our Mission

“To unlock FDI through public-private collaboration around technology-led upgrading strategies that create shared value.”

The Role of Technology in Investment Promotion

The emergence of modern technologies over the past decade has fundamentally changed the way investment promotion is conducted. When properly utilized, technology can significantly improve IPA performance. Many businesses are conducting their activities online leaving important traces regarding their needs and future moves. With digital marketing methods and modern data analysis, IPAs can access their target groups in a very time and cost-effective way.

SEA leverages these technologies to:

Map the business environment to identify opportunities for shared value creation:

Market Mapping

Market Mapping via a SWOT analysis is the first step toward developing an investment promotion strategy and is a key tool for identifying an initial list of target sectors and underlying clusters that offer potential for investment.

Cluster Analysis

A cluster analysis is performed in order to understand the environment within which these sectors operate and to identify areas of the regional economy where comparative advantages exist and long-term growth through economic upgrading is most viable.

Identify opportunities and align incentives for technology-led upgrading through FDI:

Upgrading Opportunities

After target sectors have been identified and a cluster analysis completed, innovation accounting and comparable sector analysis takes place to identify strategic opportunities for improving cluster competitiveness. 

Align Incentives

After upgrading opportunities within key clusters of target sectors have been identified, an investment promotion action plan must be crafted in order to align key stakeholders around a defined strategy and mutually accepted targets.

Scale and refine promotion strategies through marketing and relationship development:

Marketing & Promotion

After opportunities have been identified and incentives aligned, IPA’s must then disseminate information about the offering in an attempt to create a favorable image of the investment potential. This comes down to marketing activities, such as direct marketing, advertising, investment seminars and missions.

Investor Targeting & Lead Generation

Investor targeting and lead generation are the most sophisticated and challenging activities of an IPA although perhaps the most important. Effectively prospecting and screening investors for 

The SEA System

SEA’s solutions are supported by a data portal to facilitate collaboration around shared value opportunities and targeted private sector HUBs designed to catalyze cluster-specific private sector investment aligned with public sector objectives.

Taken together, the SEA System is designed to act as a socio-economic catalyst by improving the productivity of IPAs through the leveraging of public sector investment initiatives as a platform for stimulating microeconomic competitiveness through private sector investment. 


    SEA provides Investment Promotion Agencies(IPAs) with tools and processes for analyzing, aligning and promoting public investment opportunities to foreign direct investors.


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