KENYA, JUNE 7 ― Invest in Africa (IIA-Kenya) has issued its first ever financing linkage to a local SME in Turkana County in form of a business loan under the IIA Credit Guarantee Scheme (CGS), creating an opening for future support of businesses in the remote part of the country.
Akiberan Aberu Suppliers and Contractors Ltd, a wholly women-owned and run business based in Lokichar, became the first company to open record books when it secured financing of up to 70 per cent for an LPO issued to them for the supply of vegetables, fruits and other perishable farm produce to Tullow Oil.
Akiberan Aberu Suppliers and Contractors Ltd is one of the local SMEs who are beneficiaries of the local content requirement of Tullow Oil in the partially marginalized region of Northern Kenya.
This milestone will see IIA-Kenya benchmark and draw lessons for effective community financing and open doors for other locally owned SMEs get access to affordable credit.
Ms.Rael Mzee, the chairperson of Akiberan Aberu Suppliers and Contractors Ltd expressed her gratitude saying: “This is a dream come true for my business. It is the beginning of a new journey to prosperity as some of the constraints we have been facing in accessing finance are now a thing of the past. Thank you Invest in Africa.”
IIA-Kenya’s Country Manager, Wangechi Muriuki while signing the loan disbursement agreement expressed high optimism towards a successful and a mutually rewarding relationship between IIA-Kenya and SMEs on the African Partner Pool (APP) platform.
“We have stepped up to extend our commitment to bridge the financing gap by finally offering affordable credit directly through our Innovative Financing Scheme that is delivered though a Mobile Application that we have developed,” Muriuki said.
The financing application is supported by the APP platform.
Invest In Africa aims to work with local communities, not just in Turkana County but all the 47 counties by enabling SMEs to access skills, markets and finance, she affirmed.
IIA partners with leading private and public sector organizations in Kenya in order to drive job creation and enterprise development in the economy.
The African Partner Pool (APP), which hosts the Credit Guarantee Scheme, is a technology platform and a product of Invest In Africa that directly connects SMEs with larger organizations sourcing for goods and services.
Additionally, it offers capacity building to address their skills and knowledge gaps. The platform currently has a database of over 1,500 vetted, cross-sector SMEs from Kenya.
IIA Partners with Tullow Oil, Equity Bank, EY, Clyde & Co, Ecobank, Safaricom, Shell, Nation Media Group, AMSCO, Strathmore Business School, Keninvest and KEPSA among others.