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Transport, construction, ICT shine at Top 100 SMEs survey

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Transport, construction, ICT shine at Top 100 SMEs survey

Nation Newspapers Division Managing Director
Nation Newspapers Division Managing Director Francis Munywoki (left), Trueblaq CEO Jacqueline Ombajo and KPMG East Africa CEO Benson Ndung u at the Top 100 Gala Dinner on Thursday. PHOTO | DIANA NGILA 

Small and mid-sized firms in the transport, construction and ICT industries dominated the top ranking of the annual Business Daily and KPMG Top 100 SMEs survey.

The three sectors took two slots each among the top 10 firms in the survey whose results were announced on Thursday evening, dominating companies from agriculture, manufacturing and real estate.

Nairobi-based creative firm Trueblaq, founded in 2001 by the late events guru Kevin Ombajo, was crowned the overall winner.

It was followed by Quipbank Trust Limited while transport firm Rural Distributors Enterprises came third.

Orange Pharma Limited, Professional Digital Systems, ASA Limited, Kurrent Technologies, Dakawou Transport Limited, Spic N Span Cleaning Services and Questworks Limited closed the top ten positions.

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KPMG East Africa chief executive Benson Ndung’u said the survey has helped promote the SMEs, making them attractive to employees and funders as well as easing the sale of their products in a competitive market place.

“As business leaders we need to keep reinventing ourselves. Competition in the business landscape is severe and only the agile will survive and remain high up the rankings,” said Mr Ndung’u when announcing the top firms in 12th edition of the survey

The dominance of small businesses in the transport, construction and ICT industries came at the expense of their counterparts in the agriculture and manufacturing sectors.

Agriculture, the single- biggest contributor to the country annual economic at 34.5 percent of the GDP output and the manufacturing industry which is third were not represented in the top 10 at this year’s edition.

Transport accounts for eight percent of the GDP followed by manufacturing (7.7 percent) and real estate (seven percent).

This year’s edition saw Riley Falcon Security and Nyeri-based dairy company Mukurweini Wakulima Dairies join the Club 101-the premier club among the top 100 small businesses. Club 101 is the elite category for companies that outgrow the Sh50 million-Sh1 billion annual turnover threshold.

In addition to having a maximum annual turnover of Sh1 billion, the companies which are not listed on the Nairobi Stock Exchange are required to submit three years of audited financial reports.

The Top 100 Survey-a joint initiative of Nation Media Group #ticker:NMG and audit firm KPMG East Africa recognises the best 100 small businesses in the country.

The small businesses are further required to submit audited financial accounts for the past three years underlining the need for improved accountability and book-keeping.

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World Bank pushes G-20 to extend debt relief to 2021

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World Bank Group President David Malpass has urged the Group of 20 rich countries to extend the time frame of the Debt Service Suspension Initiative(DSSI) through the end of 2021, calling it one of the key factors in strengthening global recovery.

“I urge you to extend the time frame of the DSSI through the end of 2021 and commit to giving the initiative as broad a scope as possible,” said Malpass.

He made these remarks at last week’s virtual G20 Finance Ministers and Central Bank Governors Meeting.

The World Bank Chief said the COVID-19 pandemic has triggered the deepest global recession in decades and what may turn out to be one of the most unequal in terms of impact.

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People in developing countries are particularly hard hit by capital outflows, declines in remittances, the collapse of informal labor markets, and social safety nets that are much less robust than in the advanced economies.

For the poorest countries, poverty is rising rapidly, median incomes are falling and growth is deeply negative.

Debt burdens, already unsustainable for many countries, are rising to crisis levels.

“The situation in developing countries is increasingly desperate. Time is short. We need to take action quickly on debt suspension, debt reduction, debt resolution mechanisms and debt transparency,” said Malpass.

ALSO READ:Global Economy Plunges into Worst Recession – World Bank

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Kenya’s Central Bank Drafts New Laws to Regulate Non-Bank Digital Loans

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The Central Bank of Kenya (CBK) will regulate interest rates charged on mobile loans by digital lending platforms if amendments on the Central bank of Kenya Act pass to law. The amendments will require digital lenders to seek approval from CBK before launching new products or changing interest rates on loans among other charges, just like commercial banks.

“The principal objective of this bill is to amend the Central bank of Kenya Act to regulate the conduct of providers of digital financial products and services,” reads a notice on the bill. “CBK will have an obligation of ensuring that there is fair and non-discriminatory marketplace access to credit.”

According to Business Daily, the legislation will also enable the Central Bank to monitor non-performing loans, capping the limit at not twice the amount of the defaulted loan while protecting consumers from predatory lending by digital loan platforms.

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Tighter Reins on Platforms for Mobile Loans

The legislation will boost efforts to protect customers, building upon a previous gazette notice that blocked lenders from blacklisting non-performing loans below Ksh 1000. The CBK also withdrew submissions of unregulated mobile loan platforms into Credit Reference Bureau. The withdrawal came after complaints of misuse over data in the Credit Information Sharing (CIS) System available for lenders.

Last year, Kenya had over 49 platforms providing mobile loans, taking advantage of regulation gaps to charge obscene rates as high as 150% a year. While most platforms allow borrowers to prepay within a month, creditors still pay the full amount plus interest.

Amendments in the CBK Act will help shield consumers from high-interest rates as well as offer transparency on terms of digital loans.

SEE ALSO: Central Bank Unveils Measures to Tame Unregulated Digital Lenders

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Scope Markets Kenya customers to have instant access to global financial markets

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NAIROBI, Kenya, Jul 20 – Clients trading through the Scope Markets Kenya trading platform will get instant access to global financial markets and wider investment options. 

This follows the launch of a new Scope Markets app, available on both the Google PlayStore and IOS Apple Store.

The Scope Markets app offers clients over 500 investment opportunities across global financial markets.

The Scope Markets app has a brand new user interface that is very user friendly, following feedback from customers.

The application offers real-time quotes; newsfeeds; research facilities, and a chat feature which enables a customer to make direct contact with the Customer Service Team during trading days (Monday to Friday).

The platform also offers an enhanced client interface including catering for those who trade at night.

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The client will get instant access to several asset classes in the global financial markets including; Single Stocks CFDs (US, UK, EU) such as Facebook, Amazon, Apple, Netflix and Google, BP, Carrefour;  Indices (Nasdaq, FTSE UK), Metals (Gold, Silver); Currencies (60+ Pairs), Commodities (Oil, Natural Gas).

The launch is part of Scope Markets Kenya strategy of enriching the customer experience while offering clients access to global trading opportunities.

Scope Markets Kenya CEO, Kevin Ng’ang’a observed, “the Sope Markets app is very easy to use especially when executing trades. Customers are at the heart of everything we do. We designed the Scope Markets app with the customer experience in mind as we seek to respond to feedback from our customers.”

He added that enhancing the client experience builds upon the robust trading platform, Meta Trader 5, unveiled in 2019, enabling Scope Markets Kenya to broaden the asset classes available on the trading platform.

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