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The third edition of the Nation Media Group SME Conference and Expo

Ministry of Industrialization, Trade and Enterprise Development and the Micro & Small Enterprises Authority MSEA in partnership with the Nation Media Group (NMG) and the Kenya National Chamber of Commerce & Industry (KNCCI) jointly organized the 3rd Edition of the SMEs Conference & Expo that has kicked off from 24th – 26th March 2022 at the KICC grounds.

The three-day exhibition and conference under the theme ‘Making the SME sector competitive amid Covid-19, A Multi-stakeholder’s approach’ brought together exhibitors, policymakers, business leaders, entrepreneurs, innovators and researchers and gave insights on increasing business efficiency and competitiveness.

Speaking during the opening ceremony, the Chief Guest Hon. David Osiany the Chief Administrative Secretary Ministry of Industrialization, Trade and Enterprise Development said the Government is working to upskill MSEs on the current market trends for them to compete effectively in the growing market aggression, especially under the Africa Continental Free Trade Area (ACfTA).

“We need to address the competitiveness of MSEs. Unlicensed and unregistered businesses cannot access financing, investment or service mass orders and this holds back business growth,” said Hon. Osiany.  He also applauded the Government agencies under the Ministry for facilitating MSEs with the required support for them to benefit from the single African market.

CAS David Osiany making his opening remarks during the 3rd edition of the Nation Media Group SMEs Expo

MSEA facilitated 20 MSEs in agribusiness value addition, textiles, leather and motor vehicle innovation to exhibit at the expo.

The first such expo was held in 2020 and attracted 91 exhibitors. The second was held at the peak of Covid19 and attracted 120 exhibitors.

Iran Ambassador to Kenya Jafar Barmaki, KNCCI President Mr. Richard Ngatia, NMG  Group Chief Executive Officer Mr Stephen Gitagama and CEO Kenya National Federation of  Jua Kali Associations Mr. Richard Muteti visit MSEA stand at the SME Conference and Expo.

Other notable guests present included Mr. Richard Muteti, CEO The Kenya National Federation of  Jua Kali Associations, Mr. Stephen Gitagama NMG  Group Chief Executive Officer, Kenya national Chamber of Commerce & Industry Vice President Dr. Erick Rutto among others.

Below are some of the MSEs supported by MSEA to exhibit at the expo.

HOMEGROWN CHILLI CONDIMENTS

Lokko Matheka is the owner of Mdalasini Relishes, a local company located in Machakos County. Lokko farms chillies and makes sauces and condiments from them. The chillies are organically planted, sundried and packaged in jars costing from Kshs. 400 – Kshs 900 depending on the size. She sells her products online and in organic farmers’ markets in Karen and Kilimani. If you would like to inquire or buy contact Lokko through Instagram page @mdalasini_ and Facebook page @mdalasini.

HONEY VALUE ADDITION

Robinson Kamba is a renowned entrepreneur and the owner of Arib Bee Hives and Honey Limited based in Machakos. He manufactures and fabricates beehives that he sells to farmers. He then buys honey and beeswax from these farmers for packaging and selling. Using beeswax, Robinson makes soaps, lotions and creams. His best selling product, beehives go for Kshs. 5000, honey goes for Kshs 200 – 800 and the beeswax costs Kshs 1000 to 1500. He sells these products to supermarkets and shops in Machakos and Nairobi. If you would like to inquire or make a purchase, contact Robinson on his mobile number 0719329340 or through his Facebook page @aribbeehives&honey.

HANDCRAFTED BAGS

Meet Sharon Cherotich founder and owner of Shariez Handmade based in Kericho County. She makes small and big fashionable bags using nylon macramé yarn which is light and easy to clean. Sharon started by making crochet scarfs and then grew into making handmade bags using the cord. In a day, she weaves 2 bags with the help of one employee. She sources the yarn locally and also from Turkey. The bags retail for Kshs. 2000 to Kshs 3200 depending on the size. If you would like to inquire or buy her bags, contact Sharon through her Facebook and Instagram page @shariez_handmade.

PRODUCTION OF ORGANIC FERTILIZER

Thuranira Thiaine and Charles Onyango are the owners of Mazao Fertilizers a start-up based in Meru that manufactures liquid organic fertilisers and organic digesters named Mazao organic liquid fertilizer and Mazao digester respectively.  The Mazao organic liquid fertiliser is 100 per cent organic and is used as a compound fertilizer. The Mazao digester on the other hand is used to extinguish odour and in waste management to treat water which can be recycled for gardening, flushing out and cleaning.  In 2021, the start-up was selected for the Greenbiz Accelerator cohort at the United Nations Climate Change conference in Glasgow.

The fertilizers and digesters retail for Kshs. 500 to Kshs 2000 depending on the size and product. Some of their clients include; Kenchic, KTDA and others in Meru, Loitoktok and Narok. If you would like to inquire or purchase any of these, contact Mazao Fertilizers on 0708114025 or reach them through their Facebook page @mazaoorganicfertilizers.

GLUTEN-FREE SNACKS

Some Delish Snacks is a confectionery company based in Kasarani that makes low gluten doughnuts from banana, cassava and wheat flour blends. Denis Kariuki, the proprietor, sources 60% of the ingredients from local farmers and uses eco packaging. Some Delish Donuts are available in a variety of delicious flavours, including classics like vanilla, as well as those glazed with seasonal flavours. Denis also sells banana and cassava flour with the help of his 2 permanent employees. If you would like to inquire or buy Some Delish Snacks, contact them through the social media pages @somedelishdonuts.

MIRAA VALUE ADDITION

Kimathi Munjuri is a member of the Nyambene Miraa Traders Association. The association consists of individual farmers, traders and private companies that farm and sell khat, (Miraa). Kimathi farms (Khat) Miraa, dries it and processes it to make miraa infused tea, miraa wine, whisky and an energy drink. The price range for these products is Kshs. 200 – Kshs 1000. Kimathi sells his products all over the country. If you would like to know more about this business or buy any of these products, contact @nyambenemiraaatradessociation on Facebook.

NATIVE WOOD CARVINGS

Josphat Muia is a sculptor based in Meru County who works with native wood to develop carvings using sustainable practices. He sells his products on wholesale to other MSEs in the city market, Nairobi, curio shops in Nakuru and other local markets. Josphat has 12 people on contract who work come in to help with bulk orders. The sculptures retail from Ksh 1000 to Ksh 30,000.