Farm Finance Lead

at Mad Agriculture

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Full Time

United States

Closing date: 2020-07-31

Knowledge fields

At Mad Ag we put radical ideals to work. Your consciousness will expand, and never be the same. We see no division between the work of the heart, soul and mind. We crack it all open, with the belief that the power to affect change lies in the interplay between these realms. We troll the depths of human nature and don’t shy away from hard topics. 

We like solving problems by blending the dimensions of agriculture, social psychology, aspirational politics, philosophy, science, carbon cycling, ecology, sacred economics, movement building, markets, poetry, innovation and more. Then, we focus on putting our thoughts and dreams into action. 

Mad Ag is a container for growth and discovery; a community to express your passion, find belonging and meaning; a platform to build your portfolio, and mature hard and soft skills; time and space to find your path; and, an opportunity to expand your community of practice and change. We are excited to help you move boldly in your career and fulfill your dreams of work and play. 

About the Role:

Mad Ag recently launched The Perennial Fund, an alternative bank for farmers. We replace operating loans with the low-cost, flexible capital they need to transition to regenerative. We offer a 10-year note to finance farmers successfully by equipping them with the operating capital to thrive during the 3-year organic transition trough. Our hope is that supportive capital helps invigorate the imagination, liberating farmers from the industrial shackles of debt obligations (i.e. bank requirements for GMO seeds, synthetic inputs, etc.) and enables the transition to regenerative organic agriculture. 

With this capital in place, we then leverage our full system of change to co-create an organic transition plan with farmers at no added cost. We create market offtake and base the payback structure on a farmer’s ability to succeed while paying a share of revenue back to the Perennial Fund that is tailored to each individual farm. The fund is structured to ensure that the success of Mad Agriculture, partners, and the farmers are one in the same. The health of the soil and all people is one and indivisible.

Mad Agriculture’s Farm Finance Lead is an exciting opportunity to be a part of this revolution in agriculture financing. You will be able to standardize our lending practices and principles, working with individual farms to optimize their finances and subsequently the health of our first pilot fund. Your ability to intimately understand the risk profiles of each farm and protect potential downside scenarios will be paramount. You will help farmers build out their balance sheets, income statement, and cash flow, in order to effectively track their revenues and compare them to standard metrics and indices. You know what a Schedule F is and you will build out the systems needed to protect our farmer’s data and confidential information. 

This is the perfect role for an individual at the intersection of farm finance rooted in practical agronomy and crop markets, combining your agricultural and business knowledge to find workable solutions to any financial problems our farmers encounter. A lender that always strives to be a partner to farmers, not an adversary, actively calling on your rolodex of prospective borrowers and existing customers in order to work towards a common regenerative goal.

You Will:

  • Assess, monitor, and report on the financial health of portfolio farms in the Perennial Fund over the lifetime of the fund. 
  • Build financial due diligence, monitoring, and verification systems from the ground up – not bound by bureaucratic, rigid systems
  • Assess the financial health and viability of a farmer’s operation
  • Communicate with farmers, learn by listening and giving space for them to share
  • Monitor and update our risk management policy
  • Conduct extensive farmer due diligence during loan underwriting process
  • Work with farmers to determine appropriate loan amount and credit options for each farm
  • Approve within delegated authority loan structures pricing and conditions on loan transactions
  • Make credit and lending decisions
  • Evaluate the risk in loan transactions and assign a probability of default
  • Prepare credit analysis on assigned portfolio directly or through the use of a credit analyst
  • Standardize the loan collection process
  • Manage existing loan portfolios for the current pilot and future funds
  • Participate in community and industry events
  • Support the Mad Agriculture farm planning team, and work with external crop marketers and agronomists to optimize the transition to organic 

About You:

  • You are deeply committed to regenerative agriculture and the future of our farming systems
  • You are familiar with Midwestern broad acre organic grain farm operations
  • You enjoy getting in on the ground floor of a growing organization
  • You have a minimum of five years of relevant experience with farm financing and lending.
  • You have strong verbal, written and interpersonal communication skills that make you a pro at building trust and developing relationships
  • You’re a self-starter able to function independently and adapt to changing priorities in a start-up, fast-paced environment
  • You are a team player and are excited to integrate with the Mad Ag staff, market experts and partner organizations
  • You like getting on the farm and talking shop 
  • Your curiosity drives lifelong learning
  • You’re excited to change the world of farm finance