ABSA Bank
Absa Bank Kenya say it is keen on enhancing the capacity of SMEs in Kwale County as well as various projects with high impact in terms of creating employment opportunities, increasing county competitiveness, and revenue generation.

If you are a small scale business planning to invest or grow your enterprise in Kwale County then fishing, agribusiness, tourism and hotel industries might be good areas to commit your money for optimum benefits.

Mining and manufacturing are other lucrative segments that big corporates can also reap handsome returns and help turn the coastal county into a centre of creating jobs and revenue for the country.

Kwale has a huge potential for agri-based processing companies for coconut, citrus, mango, orange, and cashew nuts.

As counties across Kenya increase calls for investors to channel capital and expertise in particular segments in their regions, banks are taking the cue, and stepping in to back both new and existing investors to scale and create more value.

Absa Bank Kenya is currently tipping SMEs on various industries that hold potential for immense growth in the coastal area while coaching the entrepreneurs on how to scale and optimally tap various funding opportunities offered by the Pan-African lender.

“We shall be in a better position as your growth partner and stakeholder to support high, broad-based, inclusive and sustainable growth of SMEs in partnership with counties,” Absa Bank Kenya Customer Network Director Peter Mutua told SMEs in Kwale.

In Kenya, the micro-, small- and medium enterprises account roughly 98 percent of all businesses in the country, providing jobs close to 50 percent of the workforce and contributing up to 33 percent of the GDP.

In liaison with the Kenya National Chamber of Commerce and Industry (KNCCI), Absa is training SMEs, helping them surmount various challenges including accessing capital, and markets.

Read also: In the era of quick loans, banks are transforming into SME partners to compete, add value

In the forums, target SMEs are also learning how to enhance their entrepreneurship skills by among others harnessing latest technology, besides handy tips on how to attract and retain the best talent.

At the moment, Kwale is home to five big manufacturing and extraction firms: Coast Calcium Ltd, Base Titanium, Kwale Coconut Company (formerly Serendi Kenya), Bixa Limited and Kwale International Sugar Company.

To spur growth, Absa is actively seeking collaborations with Kwale County Government to accelerate production in the devolved unit’s agriculture that encompasses livestock and fisheries.

Other areas that are also earmarked for collaborations are trade and industry, tourism, and co-operatives, which are among Kwale’s priority areas that are billed to drive economic transformation.

With data showing 54 percent of the county’s rural population is unemployed, Absa is setting ties with the county government to empower our youth with the skills as part of the lender’s goal to impact one million youth in Kenya by 2025.

Further, Absa has unveiled a bespoke mentorship and financing programme targeting women entrepreneurs through a Kes10 billion fund that seeks to benefit one million women entrepreneurs by 2025.

The money is being availed to women-owned businesses through the existing banking products such as unsecured and secured loans, trade finance, asset finance, property finance, and working capital facilities.

“Under our SHE Business Account, you can access unsecured loans of up to Kes7 million and Kes10 million for existing Absa borrowers, invoice discounting of up to Kes30 million, unsecured LPO financing of up to Kes12 million,” said Susan Situma, Head of SME, Absa Bank Kenya.

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