IIA NEWS IN Kenya

Picking apart Africa’s energy transition, the progress needed to be made, numerous decisions to consider and the need for supportive policy to accelerate efforts – here is Episode 3 of Gaia Says No – Africa, hosted by future Net Zero.

Joining IIA's Director, William Pollen are Dr Amy Jadesimi, Managing Director of LADOL Free Zone in Lagos, Stanley Nyoni, Sustainability and Leadership Advisor, with future Net Zero’s founder, Sumit Bose directing the conversation.

Listen here and please feel free to share among your networks to keep the conversation going!

Read more

AfCFTA gives glimpse of new African destiny

An increasingly insular post-Covid world economy has created the opportunity for Africa to lead the global trade agenda. Economies on the continent must seize it with both hands, writes director of Invest In Africa, William Pollen.

Africa’s debt-laden economies bore the brunt of the global economic fallout from the pandemic, while the continent grappled with its first recession in twenty-five years. Sub-Saharan Africa’s pleas for debt relief were met with scepticism by richer nations, as 30m people on the continent slid into extreme poverty last year.

Yet as richer economies retreat into isolationism, they have failed to coordinate a collective response to the pandemic that considers the needs of poorer nations with less advanced healthcare systems.

Public debt in sub-Saharan Africa has ballooned to 66% of gross domestic product, while debt service payments average 32% of annual revenue, IMF data from 2020 indicates.

But there are reasons to be more optimistic in 2021 and beyond.

Firstly, the birth of the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA) was a timely reminder of where the continent’s priorities lie. Secondly, the drive for greater sustainability – turbocharged by the pandemic – gives Africa a chance to redefine sustainability in an African context and turn it into a competitive advantage.

The AfCFTA- A New Dawn?

Against a backdrop of a record GDP per capita contraction, the continent is feeling the pinch of dwindling export revenues and declining foreign direct investment (FDI). Uncertainty and economic tremors are heightening investor anxiety, who faced with the fight or flight option, have fled with $700bn from developing countries.

Multinationals have reduced, delayed or in some cases cancelled investment into Africa altogether, instead preferring to invest into safer ‘home’ markets.

Africa’s risk profile is in part shaped by the terms dictated by the global north. Though the AfCFTA may not achieve complete emancipation, it gives Africa more influence over its economic ambitions.

Only Africa can realise the substantial opportunities the AfCFTA offers, such as creating homegrown investment, domestic economic expansion, and jobs for its young, ambitious and entrepreneurial populations.

As other countries turn inward, trade over the next decade and a half will boost Africa’s income by $450bn and contribute $76bn to the world economy, underlining its importance to the global trade agenda.

At a bare minimum, better cohesion among Africa’s 55 countries is imperative to driving sustained growth, while leveraging the full potential of a region with a combined GDP of $3.4trn can be a powerful accelerator.

At present, only around 16.6% of goods traded by African countries remain on the continent’s shores.

The AfCFTA will stimulate progress towards a continental customs union, eliminating 90% of trade barriers, facilitating free movement, easing access to markets and trimming red tape, to boost intra-African trade by 50%.  

Effective execution of the agreement will lift an estimated 30 million on the continent out of extreme poverty, as well as develop more supportive, sustainable social systems.

As Covid-19 exposes the fragilities of women’s economic positions across the continent, the AfCFTA will bolster their financial independence. Beyond that, the continent’s burgeoning aspirational youth, increasingly disenfranchised by earning a livelihood in the rural, primary sector will be afforded more opportunities as production and trade benefit from a more efficient value chain.

One of the largest impacts the AfCFTA can imprint on the continent is realising greater value from its wealth of natural resources. Despite having 60% of the world’s uncultivated arable land, Africa is a net food importer, just as the world’s tenth largest oil producer, Nigeria, relies on other countries for its fuel.

Raw materials account for the majority of exports with around 70% of value addition happening off African shores. Technological development, demographic shifts and changing lifestyle trends all support this movement.

As the continent works towards successful implementation of the AfCFTA, it should build an inclusive continental economy on existing foundations, that lifts up small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs).

SMEs account for an estimated 80% of all businesses and even more job opportunities across the continent, making them vital to empowering marginalised members of the community.

The importance of SME success has been highlighted by initiatives led by the likes of the AfDB and Afrexim Bank, to strengthen the implementation framework in their favour. Their efforts will be supported by the first woman and African at the helm of the World Trade Organisation, Dr Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala.

Sustainability – an opportunity within AfCFTA?

Sustainability brings with it commercial advantage, allowing SMEs to be more competitive at home and abroad. However, sustainability in the African business context is largely misunderstood, both domestically and overseas, and often imposed ‘top down‘ as a cost of doing business with big corporates or multinationals.

However, Covid has accelerated the relevance of sustainability to all businesses, big and small, foreign, and domestic.

The importance of governance, environmental impact and relationships with consumers, staff and local communities have all been highlighted by the pandemic.

Paralysed global supply chains further highlighted the value of onshoring, or having local suppliers. When combined with the opportunities the AfCFTA brings, now is a unique moment for African SMEs to redefine what sustainability means to them and then go after it, increasing their competitiveness and market share.

This is not about protectionism or barriers, but the opposite. At a time when global institutions are looking increasingly insular and regional trading blocs are failing to function, the AfCFTA is an opportunity for Africa to lead the global trade agenda.

African countries must not allow it to be dictated by multinationals whose shareholders usually reside outside the continent. It must be their own success story: an African solution to the global challenge of sustainability.

William Pollen is the director of Invest in Africa, a non-profit with the vision to create prospering African economies.

Originally published on African Business, 12 March 2021

Read more

The third and final webinar in our AfCFTA series in partnership with the UK Department for International Trade, explored the challenges and opportunities presented by the Continental Free Trade Agreement was a resounding success. Our impressive panel, made up of Commissioner for Trade & Industry, African Union Commission, Albert Muchanga; HM Trade Commissioner for Africa, Emma Wade-Smith OBE; Head of Research, Africa & Middle East at Standard Chartered Bank, Razia Khan; Founder of AB & David Law, David Ofosu-Dorte; and Head of Grains & Oil Seed Trade at Export Trading Group, Giles Lewis, brought all their experience and expertise to the table making for a fruitful discussion. 

Watch the footage here.

AfCFTA is a $450bn opportunity: The World Bank estimates that the successful implementation of the AfCFTA has the potential to add 450bn USD to Africa’s GDP over the next 10 years. As other nations look increasingly inwards, this is an opportunity for Africa to lead the global trade agenda.

1. Post-crisis recovery: The AfCFTA will play an important role in accelerating economic growth in the longer term and offsetting some of the economic headwinds resulting from the Covid-19 crisis, preventing permanent scarring such as widespread business closures and job losses. Governments and businesses should seize the opportunity to recover in a greener, more sustainable way.

2. Significant progress already made on standardisation and rules of origin: intent to have a ‘Made in Africa’ initiative recognised across the continent in short term future.

3. Infrastructure is key to successful trade: The African infrastructure gap (estimated at between $130 and $170bn per year) is a significant impediment to intra-African trade. Investment in infrastructure and transport linkages is much needed to support the trade framework.

4. Opportunities: Construction (to bridge the infrastructure gap), food / agribusiness, textiles and healthcare opportunities made real by AfCFTA

5. Challenges: SMEs preparedness: More work needs to be done to prepare and encourage SMEs. Surveys show that only 45% of African SMEs are ready to take advantage of the AfCFTA. In order for business of all sizes to reap the benefits of the free trade agreement, clarity, consistency and transparency are essential, as well as collaboration between both public and private sectors. The work of organisations like Invest in Africa will be vital here.

6. AfCFTA creates Economies of Scale that makes Africa a more attractive investment destination: Historically, investor appetite into Africa has been low, due in large part to market size as well as tariff and non-tariff barriers. The free trade area represents an incentive for the private sector to get involved in Africa by creating economies of scale and inspiring private capital flow. AfCFTA can turn the scale ‘on paper’ into a reality and make the opportunity worthwhile for larger investors.

7. Be patient, be persistent, be positive: The last year has shown that when we pull together we can achieve remarkable things (vaccines that used to take 10 years, ready in one year)- AfCFTA won’t be perfect from 2021 but the foundations have already been created, the political will is there, now it is up to the private and public sector to collaborate and support one another to ensure the single greatest global trade opportunity succeeds.

Read more

Job title: Invest in Africa -IIA- (UK)- Account Executive  
 
The ideal candidate will be passionate about breaking into the African business and / or international
development space.

This entry level role is for someone who is looking to build their knowledge and understanding of
working in African investment and /or development sector. Although defined by primarily important but
routine, supporting tasks the role also has great scope for someone with initiative, proactivity and a
desire to over deliver to develop it into a larger role. For example, with direct project accountability and
oversight of the marketing function.

Job purpose  
To provide important operational support to the team of project managers and senior management in
the London office of Invest in Africa. This includes being on top of all the detail of day to day reporting
and back office functions as well as coordinating with colleagues in regional (Africa) offices to ensure
efficient ways of working across all programmes and systems. The role will also require oversight for the
day to day relationship with IIAs marketing agency, including the production of presentations, case
studies and some social media / website activity.
 
 
 Duties and responsibilities  
  

1. Liaise with IIAs African offices/colleagues to ensure coordinated approach across IIAs key programmes
2. Produce regular reports, case studies, impact summaries for use in IIAs presentations and marketing
3. Liaise with all IIAs third party providers and suppliers to ensure all contracts competitive and up to date
4. Manage all ‘back office’ functions (Salesforce, Project Place, travel, insurance, some aspects of finance)
5. Manage relationships with marketing agency to see work is produced on brief, on time and on budget
6. Support the UK team with materials and research
7. Run and manage all IIA UK related events (approx. 3 p.a) 
8. Including the planning yearly calendar of events, guest lists, venue, media etc. 
9. Oversee content management, master contacts database and in time upkeep of the official IIA website 
10. Create and edit some marketing materials including brochures and videos
11. Create and send out the company's quarterly newsletter 
12. Manage IIA’s social media accounts through frequent posts, online promotion  

Qualifications / Experience
•    Degree level graduate, or equivalent 
•    3+ years of business experience preferable 
•    Strong written and verbal communication skills 
•    Strong organisational skills 
•    Able to work to tight deadlines on more than one task at a time (ie multitask under pressure) 
• Must have a natural tendency to take the initiative on work with a proactive mindset 

All applicants must have eligibility to work in the UK and be available to work in London as of April / May
2020.

Please send CV and short covering letter to michael.amaning@investinafrica.com 

Read more

Invest In Africa (IIA-Kenya) in partnership with the Department of Trade, Gender and Youth of the Turkana County Government, International Finance Corporation (IFC), Lundin Foundation, Technoserve, and Tullow Kenya, organized the 2nd annual business forum in Turkana County dubbed, ‘THE TURKANA BUSINESS EXCHANGE FORUM and MSME EXPO 2019.’ This event is a follow-up to last year’s IIA-led event that was held against the background of the Credit Guarantee Scheme (CGS) which has seen IIA-Kenya work with over 125 MSMEs in Turkana through the platform.

The exchange forum and MSME EXPO was conceived as an interactive platform bringing together several actors in the County including County and National Government Ministries and Agencies, private sector entities, business associations, bilateral and multilateral agencies, academia and MSMEs. This interaction aims to position the MSMEs to take advantage of Business Linkage opportunities through networking, showcase MSMEs from Turkana and public-private open dialogue to address key policy issues affecting the business environment in Turkana.


The key objectives of this year’s forum (BEF 2019) were: to provide a platform for multi-stakeholder dialogue – with the Turkana County Government (TCG), on the action areas identified at the previous Business Exchange Forum (BEF 2018) and progress made towards operationalizing the MSME Development Framework; to increase opportunities for public-private partnership for increased investment into Turkana County; to showcase scalable local Turkana businesses for the purpose of creating viable linkages for skills, finance and markets; and to understand the different MSME development initiatives and identify the areas of possible synergies.


This year’s theme is ‘Enhancing MSME Competitiveness for Business Linkages’, focused on the key value chains which carry opportunities in Turkana county. These value chains include; Extractives, Agribusiness, Basketry and Handicrafts, Construction and Fisheries. The other additional areas the forum covered included Refugee Livelihoods and wholesale and retail business.

This year’s forum was attended by 150 participants drawn from the private sector, government, business community, and Media. 43 MSMEs from Turkana County also exhibited at the EXPO. The highlight of this year’s event was the participation of MSMEs from the humanitarian ecosystem from Kakuma/Kaloyebei in Turkana West. IIA’s partners, Kenya Tullow and Equity Bank, facilitated sector discussions on Extractives and Access to finance respectively.

The event was graced by His Excellency, Josephat Nanok, Governor – Turkana County with participation from high-level county ministers. The event brings together several private sector actors, business associations, bilateral and multilateral agencies, academia, the business community, MSMEs and the media.

Read more

Invest in Africa in partnership with SME Advisory Presidency, hosted a breakfast event themed ‘Growing an Inclusive Economy: Creating Linkages for MSMEs within the Big Four Agenda’. The event was aimed at highlighting the important role MSMEs play in the Kenyan economy on its trajectory of industrialization and job creation. We will elucidate the on-going challenges MSMEs face in their business activities and share ideas on how to better support the sector to take advantage of the potential economic power of the MSMEs for the benefit of all Kenyans.

Invest in Africa, celebrating two years of it's online platform unveiled the new identity/name of the platform from the 'African Partner Pool (APP)' to the 'Biashara.Now.' The online technology platform links MSMEs with procurement opportunities available to the private sector across value chains to promote local content and business sustainability.

Speaking during the launch, IIA-Kenya Country Director Wangechi Muriuki said, “ in just two years, we have been able to register 2,250 MSMEs registered on our platform, recruit over 20 partners who have provided 67 tenders worth Kes, 270 Million being won so far by MSMEs. Additionally, over 200 MSMEs have been trained and over Kes, 300 Million of financing unlocked through these partnerships.”

Wangechi added that it is IIA-Kenya’s belief that the new identity will spur increased mutual value and engagements between Buyers, Partners and SMEs as we continue working towards IIA's vision of Prospering African Economies in Kenya.

The event was graced by Honourable Peter Munya, the Cabinet Secretary of Trade Industry as well as representatives from IIA’s partner organizations, academia, policymakers, MSMEs from the IIA platform and other high ranking officials from the bilateral and diplomatic missions.

IIA Kenya aims to leverage on the new brand identity that speaks to the market to refocus on its path towards our vision of ‘Connecting Kenyan SMEs to contracts worth Ksh.1billion and create 25,000 jobs by the year 2020’.

For inquiries contact

Denis Mbau on 0724988258 or denis.mbau@investinafrica.com

Read more

Invest In Africa-Kenya is carrying out a week-long business skills training in Lodwar, Turkana County. The event being held at the Lodwar Vocational Training Center has attracted over 30 SMEs from the region.

The aim is to empower SMEs and build their capacity to respond to the needs of the Oil and Gas industry supply chain. Some of the topics covered in the training include Strategy, Governance, Financial Management and Business Planning , ICT among others.

The training is in partnership with The Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit GmbHzz (GIZ), Employment for Development (E4D) SOGA, Shell, Tullow Oil & Kenya Federation of Master Builders (KFMB).

Read more

Invest in Africa has partnered with the Kenya Extracives Programme (K-EXPRO) to run a Credit Guarantee Scheme in Turkana, Kenya. The aim of this initiative is to help SMEs improve their credit, making it easier for them to access finance without having to give collateral.

TURKANA RECRUITMENT DRIVE

On the 17th January 2018, Invest in Africa is conducting a Supplier recruitment drive at the Enterprise Development Centre (EDC), located at the Tullow Community Resource Centre (TCRC), Lokichar. The Supplier Recruitment Drive exercise targets to recruit and introduce SMEs to the Credit Guarantee Scheme. It will also give the local suppliers an opportunity to:

  • Meet and network will fellow suppliers and APP Partners.
  • Register and learn how to utilize APP features, which include; access tenders on @APPTenda-Space and promoting your business on @APPBiashara-Network
Read more

denis.mbau@investinafrica.com

 

">

On Thursday, March 8, Invest In Africa (IIA) – Kenya entered into a collaboration with Educate Global, a Kenyan - based private equity asset manager focused on education. Educate Global is a newly-formed fund management company aiming to invest in small and medium businesses, in sectors with direct impact on educational outcomes for children and young people in East Africa.

IIA is working to enhance SME access to skills, markets and finance in partnership with leading organizations in Kenya to drive job creation and enterprise development in the economy. IIA’s collaboration with Educate Global represents a significant opportunity to share networks and expertise to support SMEs across Kenya with vital skills, markets and access to finance.

Together with its Partners, IIA has built a unique, world-class online technology platform – The African Partner Pool (APP) that currently has a cross-sector database of over of over 1,300 vetted SMEs from Kenya. The platform directly links SMEs to procurement opportunities from larger organizations sourcing for goods and services locally and also offers capacity building to enable address their skills and knowledge gaps.

IIA Partners with Tullow Oil, Equity Bank, EY, Clyde & Co, Ecobank, Safaricom, Shell, Nation Media Group, AMSCO, Strathmore Business School, Keninvest, KEPSA among others.

Speaking at the launch of the Partnership, Wangechi Muriuki, COO Invest in Africa welcomed EGF to join its pool of leading Partners in advancing the agenda of SME growth and job creation in the economy. She stated that IIA is seeking to create 1 million jobs and connect SMEs to tenders worth USD 1billion.

“IIA is delighted to have EGF join our pool of partners. We are committed to building sustainable solutions to job creation and sustainable development in the country, and this partnership will go a long way in supporting our agenda’’, Wangechi said.

Sandrine Henton, Fund Manager at Educate Global, expressed her appreciation in Partnering with IIA, commenting: ‘’We are proud to partner with IIA and look forward to working together to support the growth of SMEs in Kenya.’’

For additional questions or information, please contact Denis Mbau on 0724988258 or denis.mbau@investinafrica.com

Read more

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

On Friday 27th April 2018, Invest In Africa Kenya hosted over 50 SMEs to a Breakfast Panel Discussion themed: “The SME financing gap - myth or reality?” at the Strathmore Business School in Nairobi.

The purpose of the forum was to foster the participation of and dialogue between SMEs and financiers on perceptions biases regarding SME financing if any and gain consensus on the way forward towards advancing the SME financing agenda in Kenya.

Perceptions about SME financing have metamorphosed over different sectors and these have influenced the behaviour of both SMEs and financiers. On one hand, financiers are perceived to have stringent lending conditions while on the other hand, SMEs are perceived to be a “risky lot.”

Some of the conversation angles discussed included:

  • Are there mistaken assumptions about SME finance?
  • Is the said huge SME financing gap a myth or a reality?
  • Do commercial banks understand how to finance SMEs?
  • Are SMEs in Kenya Investor ready
  • Do SMEs really understand how financing works?
  • Are all avenues explored or can more be done to improve access to finance?

 

Speaking at the forum, IIA- Kenya Country Manager, Wangechi Muriuki pointed out that “Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) are the key drivers of growth in the Kenyan economy, creating about 90% of new jobs every year and contributing to about 25% of the country’s GDP.”

The growing attention and interest regarding SME development in Kenya has led to a more diversified pool of targeted funding options for SMEs ranging from debt to equity financing. More and more DFI’s are extending credit lines to commercial banks for lending to the SMEs while there is remarkable growth registered in Equity funding in the form of venture capitalists, angel investors, private equity funds, grants among other initiatives.

“Despite the growing number of targeted efforts for financing SMEs, the lack of ‘Access to Finance’ continually emerges as a critical factor affecting the growth and scaling up of SMEs in Kenya. It remains one of the most debated topics on matters SME”, she added.

Equity Bank’s Director of SME Banking Philip Sigwart highlighted that banks are generally considered to be averse to risk, he however noted the importance of protecting depositors’ money as this is what is used to onlend to those seeking credit facilities. He stated that Equity Bank disburses facilities amounting to Kes. 4 to 5 Billion monthly to SMEs.

Jeff Alondo, Head, Enterprise Banking, Stanbic Bank noted that 90% of SMEs in Kenya have access to finance from various sources. However, a considerable number do not keep records nor have business plans. Many of them do take a long term sustainability view of their businesses. He maintained that every SME should aim to build a company that will outlive them.

Martin Kiilu, Lead at Intellecap Impact Investment Network emphasized on the importance of developing a business vision. “Investors are not just looking for businesses to invest in but visions to invest in”, he said.

From an SME perspective, Myke Rabar, the CEO and Founder, Homeboyz Entertainment advised SMEs on the importance of being trustworthy to enable growth and business partnerships. He also reiterated that his company grew organically because of the unique nature of his business. He urged SMEs to capitalize on the finance options currently available based on the different stages of growth that the company lies in. Hadija Jama, Director, Darubini Screening Company Limited highlighted the importance of background checks and various screening interventions that SMEs can employ in their business to improve on their credit score and competence.

Professor Geoffrey Injeni, Faculty and Consultant at Strathmore Business School accentuated that they have training programs that assist SMEs to become investor ready and are working with customers of some financial institutions. Their focus is based on research led studies and business cases. This provides a more practical approach for SMEs to improve their businesses.

Invest In Africa is working to enhance SME access to skills, markets and finance in partnership with both leading organizations in Kenya in order to drive job creation and enterprise development in the economy.

Together with its Partners, IIA has built a unique, world-class online technology platform – The African Partner Pool (APP) that currently has a cross-sector database of over of over 1,300 vetted SMEs from Kenya. The platform directly connects SMEs with larger organizations sourcing for goods and services locally and also offers capacity building to enable address existing skill and knowledge gaps.

IIA Partners with Tullow Oil, Equity Bank, EY, Clyde & Co, Ecobank, Safaricom, Shell, Nation Media Group, AMSCO, Strathmore Business School, Keninvest, KEPSA among others.

For additional questions or information, please contact Denis Mbau on 0724988258 or denis.mbau@investinafrica.com

">

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

On Friday 27th April 2018, Invest In Africa Kenya hosted over 50 SMEs to a Breakfast Panel Discussion themed: “The SME financing gap - myth or reality?” at the Strathmore Business School in Nairobi.

The purpose of the forum was to foster the participation of and dialogue between SMEs and financiers on perceptions biases regarding SME financing if any and gain consensus on the way forward towards advancing the SME financing agenda in Kenya.

Perceptions about SME financing have metamorphosed over different sectors and these have influenced the behaviour of both SMEs and financiers. On one hand, financiers are perceived to have stringent lending conditions while on the other hand, SMEs are perceived to be a “risky lot.”

Some of the conversation angles discussed included:

  • Are there mistaken assumptions about SME finance?
  • Is the said huge SME financing gap a myth or a reality?
  • Do commercial banks understand how to finance SMEs?
  • Are SMEs in Kenya Investor ready
  • Do SMEs really understand how financing works?
  • Are all avenues explored or can more be done to improve access to finance?

 

Speaking at the forum, IIA- Kenya Country Manager, Wangechi Muriuki pointed out that “Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) are the key drivers of growth in the Kenyan economy, creating about 90% of new jobs every year and contributing to about 25% of the country’s GDP.”

The growing attention and interest regarding SME development in Kenya has led to a more diversified pool of targeted funding options for SMEs ranging from debt to equity financing. More and more DFI’s are extending credit lines to commercial banks for lending to the SMEs while there is remarkable growth registered in Equity funding in the form of venture capitalists, angel investors, private equity funds, grants among other initiatives.

“Despite the growing number of targeted efforts for financing SMEs, the lack of ‘Access to Finance’ continually emerges as a critical factor affecting the growth and scaling up of SMEs in Kenya. It remains one of the most debated topics on matters SME”, she added.

Equity Bank’s Director of SME Banking Philip Sigwart highlighted that banks are generally considered to be averse to risk, he however noted the importance of protecting depositors’ money as this is what is used to onlend to those seeking credit facilities. He stated that Equity Bank disburses facilities amounting to Kes. 4 to 5 Billion monthly to SMEs.

Jeff Alondo, Head, Enterprise Banking, Stanbic Bank noted that 90% of SMEs in Kenya have access to finance from various sources. However, a considerable number do not keep records nor have business plans. Many of them do take a long term sustainability view of their businesses. He maintained that every SME should aim to build a company that will outlive them.

Martin Kiilu, Lead at Intellecap Impact Investment Network emphasized on the importance of developing a business vision. “Investors are not just looking for businesses to invest in but visions to invest in”, he said.

From an SME perspective, Myke Rabar, the CEO and Founder, Homeboyz Entertainment advised SMEs on the importance of being trustworthy to enable growth and business partnerships. He also reiterated that his company grew organically because of the unique nature of his business. He urged SMEs to capitalize on the finance options currently available based on the different stages of growth that the company lies in. Hadija Jama, Director, Darubini Screening Company Limited highlighted the importance of background checks and various screening interventions that SMEs can employ in their business to improve on their credit score and competence.

Professor Geoffrey Injeni, Faculty and Consultant at Strathmore Business School accentuated that they have training programs that assist SMEs to become investor ready and are working with customers of some financial institutions. Their focus is based on research led studies and business cases. This provides a more practical approach for SMEs to improve their businesses.

Invest In Africa is working to enhance SME access to skills, markets and finance in partnership with both leading organizations in Kenya in order to drive job creation and enterprise development in the economy.

Together with its Partners, IIA has built a unique, world-class online technology platform – The African Partner Pool (APP) that currently has a cross-sector database of over of over 1,300 vetted SMEs from Kenya. The platform directly connects SMEs with larger organizations sourcing for goods and services locally and also offers capacity building to enable address existing skill and knowledge gaps.

IIA Partners with Tullow Oil, Equity Bank, EY, Clyde & Co, Ecobank, Safaricom, Shell, Nation Media Group, AMSCO, Strathmore Business School, Keninvest, KEPSA among others.

For additional questions or information, please contact Denis Mbau on 0724988258 or denis.mbau@investinafrica.com

Read more