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USAID grant signed to create 2,000 new jobs for youth in the apparel industry

Signed a new grant with Generation Program Kenya Limited, a local subsidiary of the McKinsey Social Initiative. Working hand-in-hand with Kenya’s Ministry of Industry, Trade and Cooperatives, the Kenya Association of Manufacturers and apparel companies, the program will set up and equip seven training centers throughout Kenya, provide over 100,000 hours in skills development and train 2,000 Kenyan youth, preparing them for full-time sewing machine operator jobs in the industry.  The grant is a part of the Hub’s larger “East Africa Cotton, Textile and Apparel Workforce Development Initiative,” a collaboration between the Hub and the American Apparel and Footwear Association that will ensure U.S. brands and retailers’ goods are manufactured in accordance with best business practices and operations in East Africa, producing a win-win for trading partners.

Kenyan woman-owned home-décor company enters mainstream U.S. market

Supported a Kenyan home decor producer to ship her largest-to-date U.S. order. Valued at $200,000, the deal is as a result of the Hub-organized Cost Plus World Market Trade Mission. (see success story at the end of this report) The profit from this order will go to the nearly 400 artisans who contributed to each hand-carved piece and will help finance her next big export to the U.S., which shouldn’t be far off given her now proven capacity for high-volume supply.

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The Hub supports increased investments in the upcoming Kenya Leather Park

On June 30, the Hub’s leather advisor completed his contract, during which he facilitated $9 million in total investment commitments for the upcoming Kenya Leather Park and a trade deal between Bata Shoes Kenya, Kenya Defense Forces and the Kenya Prisons Services to supply a total of $1.9 million in new sales of officer’s boots and shoes. Also in the leather sector, the Hub supported an India-based ‘trainer of trainers’ session that provided new eco-friendly technologies for best practices in leather finishing and production for five Kenyan tanneries and leather companies.

The Hub facilitates $36M new private sector investments

The Hub has facilitated $30,633,968 new private sector investments in the ag and non ag sector in Kenya. The Hub offers transaction support services. Eligible investors include private equity funds, commercial banks, impact funds, and development finance institutions. The Hub’s transaction team acts as a neutral intermediary to provide: opportunity validation market intelligence, fundraising support, due diligence, deal structuring, financial analysis and modelling. 

The Hub has helped financially close $51m of investments over the life of the project, $33.9 million in the agricultural and food chain sector and $17.4 million in the non-ag sector. There are $165 million of deals under review in the Hub’s investment pipeline. Over 

Product development excellence training for SMEs

Facilitated training on product development excellence for selected SMEs in the sector, in collaboration with Kenya Leather Development Council (KLDC). The training covered a wide range of topics in product development, including: product development planning, product development process, managing cross-functional teams and how to generate superior value products.

Helped leather enterprises develop innovative products that can compete globally, with a focus on company owners and senior management – those who can implement the concepts on which they were trained.

Trade and export facilitation through “Buy Kenya Build Kenya” strategy

Facilitated Kenya’s leading player in the formal footwear sector and the largest buyer of raw leather, Bata Kenya, to access opportunities for supplying Kenya Defense Forces with military boots and shoes.

Linked Bata Kenya to SMEs who have since started sourcing specialized finished leather for manufacture of leather goods, resulting in approximately $1.9 million in new sales.

Introduced MAS Tannery, a company established in 2004 that specializes in tanning (wet blue), to new markets in Turkey, India and Egypt. This allowed the company to increase exports to new clients  by approximately $500,000 per month.

Investor mobilization for the Kenya Leather Park



Supported Kenya’s Ministry of Agriculture to purchase 50,000 MT of maize from Ethiopia for the Kenyan Strategic Grain Reserve, bringing the total maize trade facilitated by the Hub between Ethiopia and the East African region to $100 million in the current season. 

Related Blogs and Resources

Fruit drying machine opens markets for over 500 Kenyan farmers

Published on July 18, 2018
Kenyan farmers lose tonnes of food produced due to different reasons which can be avoided with enough inputs in the agricultural sector. Globally, food wastage is estimated to be approximately 1.3 billion tonnes. This is roughly one-third of the food produced in the world for human consumption every year. In monetary value, food losses and waste amount to roughly US$ 310 billion in developing countries-which Kenya is part of- and US$ 680 billion in industrialized countries. Read more. Source | The Exchange
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Kenya to train its traders on opportunities in EAC market

Published on July 10, 2018
Kenya’s Chamber of Commerce and Industry (KNCCI) and the ministry of EAC and Regional Development are working on educating kenyan businesses and entrepreneurs on the available opportunities for trade in the EAC market. This has been agreed by the KNCCI chairman Mr Kiprono Kittony and the cabinet secretary for EAC and Regional Development Mr Peter Munya at a meeting seeking to have both parties collaborating on sensitization and capacity-building of Kenyan businessmen and entrepreneurs to seize the opportunities provided by the EAC integration for accessing the larger East African market. Read more. Source | The Exchange
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Kenya, Uganda economies ride on agriculture to boost growth

Published on July 10, 2018
Agriculture was the main driver for the Kenyan and Ugandan economies in the first three months of this year, expanding almost 10 per cent from 2017. Kenya said its economy expanded by 5.7 per cent in the first three months of 2018, compared with 4.5 per cent over the same period last year. Read more. Source | East African
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Return of free trade as Kenya-Tanzania spat ends

Published on July 09, 2018
Kenyan officials have announced the end of the long-running trade dispute with Tanzania following a bilateral meeting between the two states in Dar es Salaam. The move will see Kenya-made goods such as textiles, which had been denied preferential access, get to the Tanzanian market with much ease. Read more. Source | East African
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Kenya, US sign Sh10bn deals

Published on July 09, 2018
Kenyan government officials led by President Uhuru Kenyatta have today witnessed deals worth Sh10 billion (USD 100 million) at the ongoing US-Kenya conference in Nairobi. The 60-member American delegation to the bilateral conference, which is organised by the US Chamber of Commerce, is led by the US Under-Secretary for Commerce Gilbert Kaplan and is aimed at interrogating President Kenyatta's big 4 development agenda for investment opportunities. Read more. Source | Business Daily
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EAC COMMON MARKET IMPLEMENTATION Impact of Container Cash Deposit Requirement in Kenya: The Case of Private Sector Firms in Rwanda

Published on July 05, 2018
To highlight the impact of Mombasa Port container cash charges on regional trade and business, the Hub created the following case study focused on Rwanda private sector firms. The study demonstrates the need for a solution to the cash deposit requirement in order to reduce the cost of doing business. The study reveals long administrative time gaps between claim submission and deposit recovery that impact on business cash flow and adds financial burdens, particularly to smaller freight forwarders. It also leads to an increase in operational costs that are ultimately passed on to consumers. The study further reveals how the utilization of a guarantee scheme has enabled some of the firms to reduce costs.
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African women in technology conference to take place in Kenya

Published on July 05, 2018
The African Women in Technology (AWIT) Conference is scheduled to take place from July 19 – 21, 2018. Hosted yearly by IBOM LLC, the 3-day conference focuses on empowering, educating and connecting African women in business and technology. The core objective of the conference is to provide a platform for advancing the careers of African women in the technology industry regardless of what stage they are in their careers or businesses. a 3-day Conference focused on empowering, educating and connecting African women in business and technology. Read more. Source | CIO East Africa
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Kenya, Africa hold great promise for foreign investors

Published on June 27, 2018
On a recent business visit to Nairobi, East Africa’s financial services capital, I was impressed by the progress Kenya has made in setting up institutions and making it easier for investors to do business.Any visitor interested in setting up a business will be happy to also see the massive investments in infrastructure that would enable them to access various parts of the country and to move their products. Read more. Source | Business Daily
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