IIA Country Manager, Wangechi Muriuki engages attendees at the SME breakfast conversation. The event was sponsored by Liberty Life Assurance IIA Country Manager, Wangechi Muriuki engages attendees at the SME breakfast conversation. The event was sponsored by Liberty Life Assurance
July 04, 2019

Entrepreneurs Urged to Invest in Business Continuity

Most entrepreneurs have not prepared a succession plan for their businesses in case of their departure. This is why many Small and Medium Enterprises (SME) businesses collapse with the demise or the absence of the business owner. In most cases, it is the owner who carries the vision of the business and ensures that the business remains afloat.

June 27, 2019

IIA CELEBRATES WORLD SME DAY

In recognition of the role of Micro-, Small and Medium-sized Enterprises in the economy, the United Nations General Assembly declared June 27 as the day to raise public awareness of SME’s contribution to sustainable development in world economies.

To celebrate the day, Invest In Africa highlighted the key impact of SMEs to the Kenyan economy, the challenges they face, recognizing successful SMEs as well as addressing the opportunities ahead for members of the Biashara.Now platform.

Stanbic Bank CEO Charles Mudiwa, board members Dorcas Kombo, Rose Kimotho, IIA-Kenya Country Director, Wangechi Muriuki, and IFC country manager Manuel Mosesat the launch of the DADA Initiative in Nairobi on June 24, 2019 Stanbic Bank CEO Charles Mudiwa, board members Dorcas Kombo, Rose Kimotho, IIA-Kenya Country Director, Wangechi Muriuki, and IFC country manager Manuel Mosesat the launch of the DADA Initiative in Nairobi on June 24, 2019
June 24, 2019

IIA-Kenya SMEs to Benefit from new women Centric Financial inclusion Initiative By Stanbic Bank

Women-owned SMEs on the Biashara.Now platform are set to benefit heavily from a new women’s banking initiative  dubbed Dare to Aspire Dare to Achieve (D.A.D.A) by Stanbic Bank in partnership with International Finance Corporation (IFC). The product has set its sights on reducing the financial inclusion gap for women entrepreneurs in Kenya who are the majority owners of Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) in the country.

June 20, 2019

IIA Nominated in Upstream Oil and Gas Awards, Local Content category

Invest In Africa has been nominated for the Upstream Oil and Gas Awards 2019 in the local content category. This is in recognition of the role IIA has played in supporting organizations in realizing local content requirements. The Upstream Awards recognizes and celebrates outstanding achievements from local and international companies within the emerging upstream oil and gas industry in Kenya.

Members of the panel (l-R):  Chris Diaz, Bidco Africa Ltd, Habil Olaka, Kenya Bankers Association and Wangechi Muriuki, IIA Country Director Members of the panel (l-R): Chris Diaz, Bidco Africa Ltd, Habil Olaka, Kenya Bankers Association and Wangechi Muriuki, IIA Country Director
June 06, 2019

IIA PARTNERS WITH KEPSA ON BULDING CAPACITY FOR SMES TO ACCESS FINANCE

IIA-Kenya Country Director, Wangechi Muriuki moderated a panel discussion on capacity building to enhance access to finance for SMEs during the inaugural Supplier Diversity Summit organized by our partner, the Kenya Private Sector Alliance (KEPSA) through the Gender and Youth Sector Board.

May 31, 2019

27 SMES PARTICIPATE IN SKILLS DEVELOPMENT PROGRAMMES IN MAY

As part of IIA’s goal of enhancing the skills of SMEs on biashara.now platform, we have in partnership with our delivery partners launched two sets of skills development programs targeting SMEs. The trainings are the Tender Masterclass and the Coaching and Mentorship sessions where a total of 27 SMEs took part in the inaugural sessions.

Participants engage at the access to finance info session Participants engage at the access to finance info session
April 23, 2019

IIA Holds Access To Finance Info-Session

Invest in Africa-Kenya in partnership with Stanbic Bank held an info-session to address the hurdle of accessing finance for SMEs. This is despite the existence of many financial institutions such as banks, saccos and other informal forms of lending.  

The appetite for financing remains very high but does not translate to easily availability of money.  This is because many SMEs are seen to be risky, unbankable and lacking the capacity to effectively absorb and use financing. On the other end, high-interest rates, rigorous screening procedures and poor credit scoring among others are some of the hurdles facing SMEs.  

 

IIA Country Manager, Wangechi Muriuki (l) with Lydia Tioko(r) after unlocking financing from the IIA-Kenya Credit Guarantee Scheme(CGS) in Turkana County IIA Country Manager, Wangechi Muriuki (l) with Lydia Tioko(r) after unlocking financing from the IIA-Kenya Credit Guarantee Scheme(CGS) in Turkana County
April 19, 2019

OPINION: Credit Guarantee Scheme by Government for SMEs is Timely

I believe that the credit guarantee scheme is a great move that will deepen access to credit for Micro, Small & Medium Enterprises (MSMEs). Finance has been a perennial pain point for small businesses in Kenya. Additionally, they have been on the receiving end in the face of contracted credit as the result of the interest capping.

Penina Topole from Kalapata Investment Co. Limited Penina Topole from Kalapata Investment Co. Limited
February 13, 2019

4 SMEs ON APP WIN TENDERS WITH TULLOW KENYA BV

We are proud to report that Four SMEs registered on APP and trained under the Credit Guarantee Scheme(CGS) project have been successfully awarded tenders from our partner, Tullow Kenya BV.

The four, Amailo Investment Company limited, Turkana Holdings Limited, Trimop limited and Kalapata Investment Company Limited have been awarded the contracts to supply light vehicles and crew buses in Turkana County.

January 23, 2019

Proper corporate governance structure vital for SMEs

Across the world over, Small and Medium-sized Enterprises (SMEs) are recognised as the vehicles through which global economies are built. They provide the entrepreneurial vibrancy and vitality which drives economic activity across different industries.

January 08, 2019

SMEs must be protected from heavy, unnecessary taxes

I took a deep breath when I read in last week’s papers on Kenya Revenue Authority’s (KRA) plans to implement the new presumptive tax to Small and Medium-sized Enterprise (SMEs). This is in the quest to nab more informal businesses in the tax net. SMEs will be required to pay an amount equivalent to 15 per cent of the business permit or trading fee paid to county governments to the taxman.

The presumptive tax adds to an already bulging list of challenges facing SMEs in their quest to survive. From lack of affordable finance, lack of skills, weak corporate governance, lack of opportunities to lack of market opportunities for their products, SMEs finds themselves stuck between a rock and a hard place.

November 15, 2018

STRENGTH OF A WOMAN: TURKANA WOMAN LABORS HER WAY TO BUILD SUCCESSFUL CONSTRUCTION COMPANY

Lydia Tioko dared to dream – and she is living that dream! Born and brought up in the male-dominated Turkana Culture, hers was a confinement to the predominantly patriarchal society that is Turkana, in Northern Kenya.

Growing up watching men take the lead in almost all facets of life as the women performed their supportive roles, gave her a strong passion to do more.

This push and desire for more saw her labor her way through education and ultimately to start a business of her own – A construction company! Who could have thought it is even possible for a woman to venture into such unchartered waters? It was unheard of, but she went on.

October 27, 2018

INVEST IN AFRICA PARTNERS WITH KEPSA TO SCALE UP SMES

The Kenya Private Sector Alliance (KEPSA) in partnership with Invest In Africa (IIA) held a Private Sector Stakeholders – Scale Up Kenya breakfast meeting on “Sustainable Partnerships to Scaling Up SMEs”.

Speaking during the event, KEPSA Chairman, Nick Nesbitt applauded Invest In Africa and other players in the SME development sector, pointing out the importance of SMEs in the economy. “According to statistics, MSME’s contribute about 34% to GDP and account for over 90% of all established businesses, employing nearly 85% of Kenya’s workforce,” he said.

October 05, 2018

Invest in Africa launches SME academy in partnership with African Management Initiative

Invest in Africa (IIA-Kenya) in partnership with the African Management Initiative (AMI) has today launched an online learning academy to help SMEs on the African Partner Pool (APP) gain expertise to scale and grow their businesses.

 

During the one year program, SMEs will have access to a library of courses, practical tools and social features. They will also be guided through key steps of developing their businesses, understanding market demand, their customers, cost-effective products; developing, testing and refining their business model and how to get funding for the business.

October 04, 2018

Kenyan youth set to benefit from SME program

Thousands of Kenyan youth are set to benefit from an online learning SME program.

Invest in Africa (IIA-Kenya) in partnership with the African Management Initiative (AMI) has today launched an online learning academy to help SMEs on the African Partner Pool (APP) gain expertise to scale and grow their businesses.

During the one year program, SMEs will have access to a library of courses, practical tools and social features. They will also be guided through key steps of developing their businesses, understanding market demand, their customers, cost-effective product; developing, testing and refining their business model and how to get funding for the business.

July 31, 2018

Deputy Governor woos investors during Turkana Business Exchange Forum

Turkana Deputy Governor Peter Lotethiro is calling upon investors to invest in the region as the county government continue creating a conducive environment for them. Speaking during the Turkana Business Exchange forum held at the Lowdar Vocational Training Institute Center he said they are doing all they can to increase the ease of doing business.

The deputy governor urged entrepreneurs to take advantage of their proximity to Uganda, South Sudan and Ethiopia, which are a few hours away. More than 250 guests comprising of investors, business owner as well as County and National Government officials attended the forum.

July 23, 2018

Invest In Africa to hold a business exchange forum in Turkana County

Invest in Africa Kenya (IIA – Kenya) is organizing a business forum in Turkana County which will bring together the County government, the private sector, investors and other stakeholders.

The forum dubbed “The Turkana Business Exchange Forum” which will be held on 26th July at the Lodwar Vocational Training Institute Center aims to create a platform for the stakeholders to share insights regarding SMEs development.

The one-day forum’s goal is to link SMEs to market opportunities, finance and skills that will help them scale up.

During the event stakeholders will get an opportunity to discuss Turkana County government policies and what steps should be taken to develop SMEs. The forum expects to enlarge business networks and create awareness on the progress made by the Turkana County government towards ease of doing business.

 

IIA-Kenya aims to showcase scalable local business and encourage public –private partnership thus increasing investment in the County. IIA-Kenya, International Finance Corporation (IFC), Turkana County Government among other partners has organized the forum aiming to host around 250 guests. The organizers seek to create a better understand of the needs of SMEs versus the expectations of large companies ready to do business with SMEs.

June 06, 2018

https://kts.mu.ac.ke/index.php/business/invest-africa-kenya-issues-financial-linkage-turkana-sme/

Invest in Africa (IIA-Kenya) has announced its first ever financing linkage offered to a local SME in Turkana County in the form of a business loan under the IIA Credit Guarantee Scheme (CGS).

Akiberan Aberu Suppliers and Contractors Ltd, a wholly women-owned and run business based in Lokichar, Turkana County became the first company to open record books when it secured financing of up to 70% for an LPO issued to them for the supply of vegetables, fruits and other perishable farm produce to Tullow Oil.

March 21, 2018

SME’s in Kenya Get a Boost as IIA Signs Partnership with Educate Global

Nairobi, KENYA: Invest In Africa (IIA) Kenya chapter entered into a collaboration with Educate Global, a Kenyan- based private equity asset manager focused on education.

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.

March 08, 2018

Invest In Africa (IIA) – Kenya signs MoU with Educate Global Fund (EGF) in Support of SMEs in Kenya

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.

February 17, 2018

BIG BUSINESSES SHOULD INVEST IN LOCAL SMES WHERE THEY OPERATE

Small Medium Enterprises (SMEs) contribute to about 90% of all new jobs created in Kenya. They continue to contribute immensely to almost half of all Gross Domestic Product (GDP) in African countries and their importance to the economy is only just being realized. Many researchers are now conducting in-depth research into SMEs as key drivers of economies and how to improve them.

However, much of this hype goes to SMEs in urban areas. Most research is done in urban areas, forgetting that there is a big lot of SMEs in the rural areas.  This ensures that opportunities for growth for the local SMEs is low and hence take a longer time span to break even.Most SMEs generally die within the first 3 years of operation, studies should be done to see the lifespan of rural SMEs which I am sure will be much lower. This is because SMEs in rural areas do not get the same opportunities as those in urban areas.

January 31, 2018

Growth Mindset the Key to SME Prosperity

SMEs constitute to 40-50 % of GDP, not only Kenya but many African countries.  Additionally, Kenya’s workforce comes 80% from SMEs. These numbers look good on paper and stress the importance of SMEs in the economy. However, a scratch below the surface reveals that more than 80 % of these SMEs do not make it past their 2nd birthday. A collection of factors that work against them ensure that most of them die before they can realize their potential.

January 17, 2018

Q&A with Invest In Africa COO Wangechi Muriuki

Invest in Africa (IIA), a partnership of leading private sector businesses, working to create better access to skills, markets and finance for local SMEs. We do this through creating sustainable cross-sector partnerships, empowering local enterprise, championing private sector-led growth and simplifying doing business in Africa.

December 07, 2017

Enabling SMEs In Kenya to Scale Up

An SME is a small or medium sized enterprise. SME’s role in Kenya’s economy cannot be overlooked at any cost at this time of our economic development. The SME sector is reportedly the largest business cluster in Kenya and has created substantial job opportunities for Kenyans.

September 29, 2017

Challenges to SME growth in Kenya

Many African countries are turning to entrepreneurs to support future growth. With entrepreneurship playing a vital role in the development of a vibrant and formal small business-sized sector, there is much scope for SMEs to support African growth.

September 20, 2017

Inaccurate Information lowers trust to Lenders, says banker

Equity Bank Credit Risk Manager Timothy Mwatha Tuesday urged borrowers to provide accurate information when applying for bank loans. He added that some small enterprises treat banks like ‘enemies’ in the industry hence give inaccurate information which in turn has adverse effect on their reputation and trustworthiness.

September 07, 2017

SME's Urged To Use Apps To Grow Their Businesses

Small and medium size  enterprises have been urged to  embrace technology and take advantage of  available business applications in online platforms to enhance their businesses .

Speaking in Nairobi on a business forum in Nairobi , Timothy Mwatha, Equity Bank’s Credit Risk Manager said that such move will help the SME ‘s to grow their business remarkably .

April 27, 2017

Invest In Africa launch B2B platform to help grow SME's in Africa

Invest In Africa Kenya  has launched the African partner pool (app) platform with 6 large corporates pledging to channel their procurement needs to the over 400 Kenyan SMEs already subscribed on the platform. The app is an online cross-sector business platform that promotes Kenyan SMEs, gives them access to tenders and finance, whilst helping multinationals find quality suppliers.