Business Ireland Kenya held their latest breakfast meeting yesterday at the Park Inn by Radisson focusing on expansion and opportunities for growth. Joining attendees were representatives from the Irish Embassies of both Kenya and Uganda.
Dr Herta Von Steigel, Founder and Executive Chair of Ariya Capital, began the presentations with a look at effective expansion strategies and the importance of building networks in both global and continental business.
She said that as disruption sweeps the traditional business set up, digitisation and people were the two areas to focus on, adding that even in Kenya, Brexit is seen as a major political risk
Poverty alleviation will not occur at the back of a service industry, but will only happen under a manufacturing based economy, she added.
TradeMark East Africa Director General Mr David Stanton followed, discussing the current state of the East African Community (EAC) and how to facilitate ease of trade. He highlighted that Africa only accounts for 2 percent of world trade and that the continent’s combined GDP (Gross Domestic Product) is less than that of France.
He went on to say said that despite a few challenges around expansion and opportunities for business growth, EAC is still attractive to investors with Kenya as a footprint country and Nairobi as a mature, middle-income capital city with opportunities for IT, telecoms, tourism and finance.
Ian Middleton, Managing Director of authorized Mercedes-Benz, Volkswagen, GWM & Hyundai Trucks distributor, DT Dobie Kenya, focused on Kenya’s business outlook and country level opportunities highlighting the Big 4 Agenda as key to Kenya’s industrialisation.
The automotive manufacturing industry in Kenya should focus on exporting vehicles to the world rather than regionally, he told attendees at the meeting.
Mr Chris Maranga from Standard and Mutual wrapped up the meeting by sharing the many opportunities offered in Nakuru County, ranging from agriculture, education, tourism, finance and infrastructure.
He said that Nakuru was showing an annual growth rate of 8 percent and was the easiest place to do business.
Business Ireland Kenya (BIK)
Business Ireland Kenya (BIK) is an association that helps those with professional ties to Ireland and Kenya connect, share and grow. They work to facilitate networking between members and help them get the information and resources they need to be successful.
An initiative of the Embassy of Ireland in Kenya, which created the association in 2013 to help further trade ties between the two countries, BIK have an active and connected membership, with quarterly meetings and a thriving online community where people can share their experiences, challenges and opportunities.
For more information and how to join, please visit the BIK website.