The growing number of people living on Earth, as well as increasing competition worldwide due to globalisation and improvements in information and communication technologies, requires an approach to enable small and medium enterprises (SMEs) in developing and newly developed countries to participate and remain in the market. Value chain promotion is a pro-poor, growth-oriented approach that strives to add personal and financial value at every link of the chain, from the first step in production to the sale of a product. Based on literature research, semi-standardised expert interviews and project monitoring, it is attempted to answer how upgrading strategies should be developed for a successful implementation and how challenges and risks have to be coped with. Therefore the usability of strategies such as inclusive business, triple bottom line, cycle of learning, public-private-partnerships (PPP), SWOT and gap analyses, as well as monitoring systems are tested in the main part. Finally, the transferability of supply chain risk management (SCRM) on value chains is researched in order to find solutions from various perspectives.