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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.

Read more here

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

Kenya set to lead in ratifying Africa free-trade treaty

Published on April 05, 2018
Kenya is on course to become the first African country to offer legal backing to the continental free-trade zone after a Bill endorsing the agreement for trading bloc was presented to Parliament for approval. The National Assembly is expected to debate on the Bill for ratification of the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA) after it was tabled in the House by Industrialisation cabinet secretary Adan Mohamed. Read more. Source | The East African
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East Africa defies odds, tops economic growth in Africa

Published on March 20, 2018
East Africa recorded the continent’s best economic performance in 2017, with a GDP growth of 5.9 per cent — above the continental average of 3.6 per cent. This growth was achieved in a year that saw the region’s economic fortunes dip, as several companies keen to lower costs and post profits turned to staff cuts. Read more. Source | East African
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Nairobi to host talks, show on EA industrialization

Published on March 13, 2018
Nairobi will later this month hold a forum on how to accelerate industrialization in East Africa through the academia and private sector partnership. The forum seeks to explore the status and potential in utilizing opportunities brought about by regional integration protocols of the East African Community (EAC). The Inter-University Council for East Africa (IUCEA), the East African Business Council (EABC), the East African Development Bank (EADB) and the East African Science and Technology Commission (Easteco) will jointly organize the two-day event. Read more. Source | The Citizen  
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Border posts tipped to reduce barriers to trade

Published on February 28, 2018
Clearance at Kenya’s borders with its neighbours will be eased with the operationalisation of five modern one-stop border posts. Transport Cabinet Secretary James Macharia said this is in line with the government’s commitment to the improvement of regional transport infrastructure, which remains a key priority to all East Africa Community states. It will also help deepen policy integration and reduce barriers to trade in the region. Read more. Source | Daily Nation
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Coffee price jumps 75pc on high quality beans

Published on February 22, 2018
Coffee prices at the weekly Nairobi auction have risen 75 per cent since the first sale of the year following an increase in high quality beans. The average price of a 50-kilo bag rose to a high of Sh38,784 in Tuesday’s auction from Sh22,119 in the first sale of this year. The value of the Kenyan coffee has been consistently on the rise since the beginning of the year with Nairobi Coffee Exchange (NCE) saying the series of good prices should continue up to next month. Read more. Source | Daily Nation
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Use value addition to cut post-harvest losses

Published on February 22, 2018
The manufacturing pillar must revolve around minimising post-harvest losses and utilising local resources through value addition at county level. Everything has a value if people are willing to find a way to make it useful through value addition. But although value addition has become a buzzword in this part of the world, few realise that local farmers can play a major role towards the development of the manufacturing industry by simple value addition exercise on the locally available produce and resources around them or further upgrading of their cottage industries. Read more. Source | Business Daily
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Kenyans import $31.2m maize from the region to meet demand

Published on February 21, 2018
Kenya will next month waive duty to allow millers to import maize from Uganda and Tanzania. Kenyan traders imported more than 77,500 tonnes of maize worth $31.2 million since January from its neighbours. This is the highest amount of imports in the past five years as drought and the effects of the fall armyworm manifest in the country’s staple. Outgoing Agriculture Cabinet Secretary Willy Bett said that the government would, through the Foreign Affairs Ministry, formalise importation of maize. Read more. Source | East Africa
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Rail cargo movement increases in East Africa

Published on February 21, 2018
The East African Community member states’ appreciation of rail transport has increased, a trend experts think is good for doing business because it reduces on time.This trend, according to the experts, does not only ease doing business in the region but also it is cost effective because of its turnaround. Latest report from the Kenya Ports Authority (KPA) published this month shows that containers delivered up-country by rail from the Port of Mombasa recorded 671 twenty-foot equivalent unit (TEUs) registering an increase of 233 TEUs compared to the previous week. Read more. Source | Daily Monitor
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