About Us

Private sector-led development can fuel sustainable and inclusive growth in emerging economies. Investors can accelerate this development process by bringing in new expertise, technologies and financial resources. TRAIDE supports companies to identify and exploit opportunities, while enhancing positive impacts. The foundation aims to contribute to the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), with a particular focus on decent work and economic growth, living cities and communities, and gender equality (SDGs 8, 11 and 5). TRAIDE has local offices in Rwanda and Ethiopia and envisions to expand to other emerging economies. Our programmes in Africa are supported by the Embassies of the Kingdom of the Netherlands in Addis Ababa and Kigali.

Our Mission

TRAIDE builds local capacity and strengthens the business climate to attract investors and traders. We show entrepreneurs the promise of emerging markets, support them to invest, and help them to make their investment successful and sustainable.

Our Vision

We envision a globalised trade system that contributes to prospering businesses, sustainable environments and thriving communities

Managing Board

Auke Boere


Timon Weitkamp


Timon is writing his PhD proposal and works on the FASIMO project in Mozambique. He is an expert in remote sensing, irrigation and water management. He uses satellite-generated data to retrieve meaningful information about irrigation and agriculture.

Wouter Beekman

Vice Chair

Wouter manages Resiliência Moçambique and IRIPO. He has great expertise in irrigation and hydrology and seeks to expand this (research) portfolio to the other East-African offices.

Our Team

Anniek Elemans

Program Officer

Anniek has a background in tropical agriculture and environmental science. She currently works on the TRAIDE Ethiopia program where she focuses on monitoring and evaluation, responsible business conduct and private sector association support.

Cornelien Smit

Project Officer

Cornelien has a background in Development Economics. Currently, she supports TRAIDE the Netherlands with research on financial instruments and the organization of webinars.

Elham Mohammed Abdi

Project Officer

Currently working as a Business Support Project Officer for the TRAIDE program in Ethiopia, Elham has a business and technology background. She uses her expertise for the creation of business to business linkages, public-private dialogue facilitation and overall trade and investment support.

Evelien Lambooij

Program Officer

Evelien has a background in sustainable development and is specialized in energy and agricultural development in emerging markets, particularly in Rwanda. Her expertise is renewable energy, furthermore, she is supporting the TRAIDE program in Responsible Business Practices and contract-farming projects.

Eveline Massop

Project Officer

Eveline is an agricultural engineer with a background in international development and rural sociology. Currently, she is working on monitoring, evaluating, and learning for several projects, including gender aspects. Besides, she is working on a general MEL system for TRAIDE Foundation as a whole. 

Eyuel Seyoum

Communications Officer

Eyuel has a background in marketing and communications. He is currently responsible for public and media relations. He is constantly looking for new ways to share Traide's activities and reach more people.

Fasika  Yalew

Project Officer RBC

Fasika is a graduate of Addis Ababa University in Project management MSC and Sociology and Social Anthropology BA. She helps businesses understand the Ethiopian context and to invest responsibly. 

Gertjan Becx

Director TRAIDE Foundation

Gertjan is senior expert in agribusiness, tropical agriculture, development economics and building inclusive value chains. He is the Wageningen-based program coordinator of the TRAIDE program in Rwanda and Ethiopia.

Gretta Ishyaka

Communications Officer

Gretta has a background in rural development and agribusiness. She worked as an instructional designer and trainer before joining the TRAIDE Rwanda programme. She mainly focuses on marketing, communications, and building a knowledge management system.

Hemen Sirahbizu

Project Officer

Hemen has a background in economics, business development and RBC. She has a passion for sustainable business and social responsibility. She is currently working as a business support project officer at TRAIDE Ethiopia where she focuses on business opportunity studies, business to business linkages and investment attraction.

Hiwot Tadesse

Project Officer

Hiwot has a background in Economics and Development policy analysis. She is currently supporting the TRAIDE Ethiopia program through Research and data analysis.

Josephine Damstra

Country Director Rwanda

Josephine has a background in international relations, with a focus on the role of the private sector in sustainable development. As Country Director Rwanda, she is responsible for general program management and involved in various projects, often with a focus on water.

Marie Fidele Umutoniwase Ndahimana

Project Officer

Marie Fidele is currently supporting the TRAIDE program in Rwanda. She helps in data collection and the writing of Business Opportunity Reports.

Mauro Jeldres

Project Officer

Mauro has a background in international trade, inclusive value chains and agribusiness. He supports the TRAIDE NL team by researching investment opportunities and facilitating sustainable trade and linkages. 

Sander de Raad

Country Director Ethiopia

Sander has a background in sustainable international business, with over 7 years of experience in Latin-America and Eastern Africa. As the country director for TRAIDE Ethiopia, he is responsible for general program management and is involved in various projects related to attracting Dutch investments, increasing Ethio-Netherlands trade, and supporting established companies.

Saya Berzinji

Project Officer

Saya has a background in International Development. She supports TRAIDE the Netherlands with her expertise in creating valuable connections and partnerships. 

Susanna Cocchini

Program Officer

Susanna is currently supporting the TRAIDE program in Ethiopia, aimed at fostering a trade (rather than aid) relationship between the country and the Netherlands. Her focus is on the Responsible Business Conduct component and the analysis of business opportunities in several sectors, that TRAIDE presents to potential investors.

Thijs Rutgers

Country Director Netherlands

Thijs has almost 10 years of work experience with Africa. He worked in several African countries and his main expertise is building bridges and creating new partnerships.

Titus van Boekel

Project Officer

Titus has a background in Urban and Economic Geography. Currently, he supports the TRAIDE NL team with database compiling, researching investment opportunities, coordinating trade missions and organizing webinars.

Yanna in ‘t Veld

Project Officer

Yanna has a MSc in international economics. Currently, she supports the TRAIDE NL team with database compiling, researching investment opportunities, coordinating trade missions and organizing webinars.

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