M-Akiba is a USSD mobile system that allows Kenyans to invest in Government Bonds.
1. To invest in M-Akiba, dial USSD Code *889# on your line.
2. A prompt will appear on your screen requiring you to enter your preferred Service Personal Identification Number (PIN). Set your preferred PIN then press OK to proceed.
Please note that for subsequent transactions, you will use the preferred PIN you entered the first time. You are advised to keep your PIN a secret and protect it against unauthorized persons. In an event you forgot your PIN, press 0 and follow the prompts to set a new PIN.
3. Enter Your National Identity Number
The M-Akiba bond is open to Kenya’s citizens who have attained legal adult age of 18 years and are in a possession of a mobile money enabled phone, a duly registered line and a valid National Identity card.
4. Register to Participate in M-Akiba
After entering your National ID number, you will then be prompted to register by dialing 1.
5. Accept Terms & Conditions of M-Akiba
The service will revert with terms & conditions of M-Akiba. You are required to read and understand the terms & conditions, if you are in agreement press 1 for YES.
6. Complete Submission of Details
After accepting terms & conditions, you will receive notification from your network service provider informing you of your successful submission of details. You will then wait a few minutes for a confirmation message.
7. Receive M-Akiba Account Details via SMS
The confirmation message will have your M-Akiba Account Number, Your Name and the activation time & date of your M-Akiba Account. To continue trading, dial *889# on your line and follow the prompts.
You can now lend the Government as little as Ksh 3,000 through your mobile phone money transfer service. Through the initiative, the National Treasury is seeking Ksh5 billion from individuals through the Treasury Direct System, M-Akiba to collect the cash.
The Mobile phone USSD traded bond will see your registration, trading and settlement done through your handset. To register, dial *889#. To purchase the bond, you will open central depository accounts via your mobile phone without engaging in physical documentation.
This mobile phone-based purchase of the bond is the brainchild of the Nairobi Securities Exchange, the Capital Markets Authority (CMA), the National Treasury, stockbrokers, investment banks, Central Depository and Settlement Corporation, ICT Authority of Kenya and Nairobi International Financial Centre Authority. Interestingly, it comes hot on the heels of the lowering of minimum amount needed to purchase bonds from Sh50,000 to Sh3,000.
In the current bond issue, interests earned will be paid out every six months. Upon maturity of the bond, the principal amount you invested and the interests you have earned from the bond will be paid through your mobile.
Additionally, investors looking to purchase the bond will be able to continue buying in the subsequent periods up to the date of closure of the issue or when the targeted amount of Kshh5 billion will have been achieved. Investors, who miss out on the bond in the primary issue will have the option of buying it in the secondary market at the NSE.
However, purchase of the bond in the secondary market will be determined by the market forces. “The interest rate (on the bond) will be higher than the interest rates payable on small deposits by commercial banks and other investment channels, and as an infrastructure bond, interest payments to investors will be tax free,” Mr Rotich added.
Local banks currently offer between two and seven per cent for funds in fixed deposit and savings accounts. This means that Sh3,000 will earn you just Sh60 at savings account at two per cent interest rate.
M-Akiba bond will enable you to lend the government money repayable within specified periods. The final interest payable will be lumped together with the principal that you invested, providing you with a guaranteed and more profit than what you would get from your bank.
At 14 per cent rate, an investment of Sh3,000 is set to give investors a return of Sh210 every six months and Sh420 at the end of the year.
CBA Loop’s Lipa na M-Pesa paybill number is 714777.
CBA Loop is a digital banking application that is available via web and mobile. It is targeted at millennials who by culture do not want to visit bank branches. Loop has no branches except for a few stores that allow you to collect your CBA Loop Mastercard.
*Do not use these instructions if you want to deposit to a Commercial Bank of Africa (CBA) account.
The Procedure for depositing money via M-Pesa to your Loop account is as follows
Go to M-Pesa menu on your phone, select “Lipa na M-Pesa”
Select “Enter business no.” and enter the 714777 as the Loop business no and press “OK”
Enter your mobile number as Account Number and press “OK”
Enter amount i.e. amount you want to deposit and press “OK”
Enter your M-PESA PIN and press “OK”
Confirm all the details are correct and press “OK”
You will receive a verification window from M-Pesa where you have 1 minute to verify that the details are correct, if correct, dismiss or ignore, if wrong, enter the number 1 and press OK to cancel the transaction
You will receive a confirmation SMS from M-Pesa immediately.
Loop will then send you a confirmation SMS but you can check your loop account for confirmation of deposit.
If you have not registered for Loop and wish to do so, visit www.cbaloop.com. Registration is online and you only have to visit a Loop store to pick up your Mastercard.
The stores are currently available in the following locations -:
The Point Mall – Buru Buru
Masai Mall – Ongata Rongai
Hours of Business; 8am-8pm Monday to Sunday. Closed on public holidays
Uber has announced that in Kenya, where it is available in Nairobi and Mombasa, it is raising fares upwards to satisfy the demands by its drivers for a fair pricing model.
The full statement from Uber on Thursday reads as follows-:
“Uber works when both riders and driver-partners are benefiting. Riders need safe, reliable transport and drivers need to keep earning. We believe that riders and drivers should have transparency and certainty around our prices.
Prices are designed to encourage more riders on the road, to help increase trips for drivers, but equally, you want to make sure the basic economics of drivers are sustainable. We have always promised to closely monitor driver-partner’s economics, keeping cognisant of how inflation and fuel prices can affect drivers using our app. We continue to stand by that promise because Uber succeeds when our partners succeed.
That is why today we are raising our prices in Kenya. We believe driver-partners will earn more as a result of these changes and that riders will continue to enjoy access to a safe, affordable and reliable service.”
Kenyans are naturally inquisitive, more so about projects that generate public interest. One such project is the Standard Gauge Railway (SGR).
A question that isn’t going away is why Ethiopia has managed to build an electrified Standard Gauge Railway for less money than Kenya, yet ours is not even electric?
Engineers that are part of the SGR Kenya team have taken to Facebook to address that question in detail by providing a detailed comparison that provides an overview of how different the two projects are.
A quick comparison is drawn to the difference in speed, “It’s good to note that electric does not always mean super-fast. The Ethiopian line is only 40km/h faster than the Kenyan line.”
The Facebook post goes further to cast a light upon Ethiopia’s ability to produce enough power to run an electric railway line. “Ethiopia’s electricity generation is about to explode with the construction of the 6,000mw Grand Renaissance Dam , which will give the train service stable power supply. (Kenya Power comes to mind)”
Another reason that has contributed to the hefty bill on the Kenyan line is social and cultural factor that has meant that the Kenya Railway Corporation has had to listen to voices of communities that will be affected by the railway line such as environmentalists who are vocal about the impact of the project on Kenya’s wildlife.
Other issues that have led to the huge cost include land acquisition, the construction of bridges and stations.
China Road and Bridge Corporation (CRBC) was retained by Kenya Railways (KR) to undertake phase 1 of the Mombasa-Nairobi SGR Project while Third Railway Survey and Design Institute Group, Apec Consortium Limited and Edon Consultants International (TSDI/APEC/EDON Consortium) undertake design review and construction supervision of the contracts to ensure the quality standards are met.
A detailed analysis is given in the following pictures
poa! Internet in partnership with Liquid Telecom Kenya has launched a new Internet model into the Kibera slums, drawing thousands of subscribers in just a few months.
Delivered using solar powered hotspots and company has also provided free Internet access to Kibera schools, health centres, churches, mosques and youth centres.
Established in August last year in Kenya, poa! Internet is now employing 25 staff, mostly young people, the majority of them from Kibera, selling Internet for as little as Sh10 for 25MB.
The company’s aim is to bring millions of East Africans online over the next years, using innovative technology and ‘kidogo’ product pricing.
“We are selling internet to individuals in Kibera at affordable prices, and have also provided free Internet to more than eight health centres, 20 schools, and 20 cyber cafes’ in the area” said Mr Andy Halsall, CEO of poa! internet.
poa! is using Liquid Telecom Kenya’s fibre infrastructure, known as a local loop, from a connection near Kibera, to supply the internet to residents of Africa’s second largest slum.
“Liquid Telecom is our partner in ensuring that the less privileged population of Kibera access the same services and quality of Internet as their counterparts in other parts of the country, and at an affordable cost”, he said.
The partnership is making a swift and visible difference, he said.
“Internet has made life much better, with more youths engaging in businesses, such as cyber cafes, and shops where they are selling bundles. This has had a positive impact on these individuals and put great potential in their hands”, he said.
The cost of accessing the internet using poa! ranges from as low as Sh10 for 25 MB to Sh3,000 for 20 GB, in bundles that do not expire. “We have ensured that anybody in Kibera wanting to use high speed, high quality Internet can do so for just a few bob” said Andy.
poa! also provides its customers with free access to a wide range of digital content, including educational and healthcare and other socially beneficial materials as well as sports, entertainment and news. “We want to ensure that the people of Kibera can get access to the latest information even when they don’t have cash in their pocket”, he explained.
Andy raised seed funding in the UK to launch the business, on the basis that East Africa still holds huge potential for internet consumption.
“We are targeting millions of subscribers in this region, if our plans go as scheduled,” he said. “East Africa is highly educated but still not everybody has access to internet.”
This vision has seen Liquid Telecom Kenya name poa! internet as an outstanding example of last mile development of the group’s East African infrastructure.
“The launch and rapid rise of poa! Internet in Kibera represents a fulfilment of our own purpose and vision too, after we invested heavily in the new Nairobi metro network so that it can provide up to 20 times more internet data across the city with high quality and reliability,” said Mr Ben Roberts, CEO of Liquid Telecom Kenya.
He said Liquid telecom was looking forwards to supporting poa! internet as their business expands and rolls out to other areas.
Starting a business involves planning, making key financial decisions and completing a series of legal activities. These 10 easy steps can help you plan, prepare and manage your business.
Step 1: Write a Business Plan
A business plan is an essential road-map for business success. This living document generally projects 3-5 years ahead and outlines the route a company intends to take to grow revenues. While there are various templates that can help you get started online, the best outcome would result from you personalizing your business plan to your needs. Read as many case studies online to get a better understanding of the challenges entrepreneurs face while coming up with a business plan
Step 2: Get Business Assistance and Training
You will find that learning and growth is something that that you will need to embrace throughout the life of your business. An important step in starting your business is to get as much training as you can get from local forums, government as well as formal education about starting and running a business.
Step 3: Choose a Business Location
Your probably thinking that modern day businesses are working virtually. Well, you are right but every serious business needs a location where they can physically serve their customers. Selecting a customer-friendly location should be your priority. In Kenya, especially in Nairobi, the choice for location has been made easier by Co-Working spaces that not only ease your hassle but offer a range of support services that will get you started in the shortest time possible. You can even rent boardroom space at an hourly rate, can you believe that?
Step 4: Finance Your Business
Government backed loans, venture capital and research grants can help get you started.
Step 5: Determine the Legal Structure of Your Business
Depending on the type of business you are operating: sole proprietorship, partnership, corporation, nonprofit or cooperative, it is important to know the legal structure that can influence the way you do business in Kenya.
Step 6: Register a Business Name
Register your business name with the government. Depending on the type of business you choose to operate: sole proprietorship, partnership, corporation, nonprofit or cooperative, you will need to register it under the laws of Kenya
Step 7: Register for Taxes
The Kenya Revenue Authority will have a few instructions for you on which taxes to pay and how to pay them once you choose to do business in Kenya
Step 8: Obtain Business Licenses and Permits
You business will be requires to have the necessary licences and permits which are issued county and municipal councils to regulate how business is conducted in their jurisdiction.
Step 9: Understand Employer Responsibilities
Now that you are an employer, learn the legal steps you need to take to hire employees lest you get into trouble. Some responsibilities govern how you treat, remunerate and even house you employees. Be in the know!
Step 10: Associate your Business with the Industry
Now that your business is operational, taking the next steps for sales and marketing geared towards growth should be top of your agenda. Depending on the sector or industry of business, you can join institutions that lobby on your behalf. Private sector aligned businesses might want to consider KEPSA and other organizations that can help you network and grow the reach of your business.
New research released by global travel technology provider, Sabre Corporation, has revealed that African air travel spend is expected to rise 24% with the introduction of the pan-African passport in 2018.
The new African Union passport will enable African travellers to visit other countries on the continent without a visa.
The comprehensive survey by Sabre aimed to uncover the opportunities and challenges faced by African travellers today, in a bid to help airlines address these to support their own growth and provide travellers a better journey. Travellers from four countries – South Africa, Nigeria, Kenya and Egypt were surveyed, with those having flown in the past 24 months saying they would spend 24 percent more with the introduction of the passport (from $1,100 to $1,500 annually).
But despite a willingness among travellers to spend more on flights, travel in Africa still remains inaccessible to the majority, with only 23 percent of those surveyed having travelled abroad at all in the last two years. When asked what prevents them from travelling more, the top reasons were:
32% said travel is too expensive
31% said it is difficult obtaining VISAs
30% said it is too difficult to book travel
28% said there are no flights to their chosen destination
Travellers also expressed a number of gripes about their current experiences when travelling:
27% said the check-in process takes too long
22% said the check-in procedure is confusing
20% don’t like the food on aircrafts
19% think there is not enough to do at the airport
“The results suggest that while travel is inaccessible to many and is difficult for those that do travel, there is a still a strong desire to travel more,” said Dino Gelmetti, vice president, Europe, Middle East and Africa, Airline Solutions, Sabre. “Additionally, most of the pain points can be addressed by airlines, and these tweaks could make all the difference to travellers. African carriers currently face tough competition from international rivals that control 88 percent of African airspace but, as demand for travel increases, African airlines have a real opportunity to win the lion’s share of bookings by addressing the pain points of travellers and going the extra mile to improve their experience.”
Like many other travellers globally, Africans also expressed a strong interest in experiencing a travel journey that was more personalised and tailored towards them. Respondents said that they would be willing to spend up to $104 per trip on an airline’s extra products and services – such as excess baggage, cabin class upgrades, and special food and beverage – if it improved and personalised their journey.
“Airlines globally currently pocket an average of just $16 per passenger on ancillaries, so the fact that African travellers are prepared to spend six times more than that represents a significant retail opportunity for carriers on the continent,” said Gelmetti. “Airlines will flourish if they invest in technology that can make sense of customer data and use it to offer passengers the right product in the right context at the right time. This technology, which empowers airlines to mirror the personalised shopping tactics already mastered by the online retail industry has been proven to increase ancillary revenue by an average of 10 percent, and is being used by some of the world’s most forward-thinking carriers.”
As further encouragement for African carriers, Sabre’s survey respondents stated a number of reasons why people would choose to fly with their local carrier over a foreign airline; the top three reasons were:
It offered cheaper tickets
It offered the latest technology on board
It offered greater comfort on board.
The survey reveals significant growth opportunity for African airlines willing to address travellers’ current pain points
Kenya’s Maasai Market is arguably the best places for first-time visitors looking to experience authentic Kenyan culture.
Offering an array of apparel, handicrafts, accessories and jewellery at excellent prices, these lively day markets are great for local and international guests. The concept of the market is borrowed from the culture of one of Kenya’s most endeared communities, the Maasai.
Depicted in various international Movies and TV shows, the Maasai are among the best known local populations due to their residence near the many game parks of the African Great Lakes, and their distinctive customs and dress.
Next time you are in Kenya, here’s the when and where of the Maasai Market -:
No market on this day.
Prestige Plaza along Ngong Road and Kijabe Street Park next to Nairobi River
Capital Center along Mombasa rd
The Junction Mall & along Ngong road
The Village market along Limuru road & Lavington Mall
The High court parking in the city Center opposite Re-Insurance Plaza & Prestige Plaza along Ngong road
Think Business Africa’s Investment Awards has honoured Dyer and Blair Investment Bank’s Chairman Jimnah Mbaru with the 2016 Lifetime Achievement Award for his outstanding contributions to the securities exchange and investment sector in Kenya and the region.
The 8th Annual Investment Awards 2016 dinner gala, held on Friday 11th November 2016 at the Radisson Blu Nairobi, feted Mbaru for achievements that have spanned the founding of stock exchanges in six African nations; the founding of the African Stock Exchanges Association; and his long-term leadership of Dyer and Blair Investment Bank, which also won the Think Business Africa Investment Award for Best Investment Bank.
With more than 30 years’ experience in investment banking, Mbaru has led many landmark transactions since first becoming chairman of Dyer & Blair in 1983, including the Safaricom IPO, KenGen Rights Issue, Kenya Power Rights Issue and the Centum Bond. Under his leadership, Dyer and Blair has brought to market more transactions that any other firm in Kenya.
Mbaru is also the current chairman of the Kenya Association of Stock Brokers and Investment Banks (KASIB), which he played an instrumental role in creating, and represents KASIB as a board member of the Nairobi Securities Exchange (NSE), where he previously served as the chairman twice, between 1992 – 2001 and 2006 -2008.
While serving as Chairman of the NSE, Mbaru oversaw the move from the Open Outcry trading system to electronic trading, and also helped set up the Uganda Securities Exchange (USE) and Dar es Salaam Stock Exchange (DSE). He additionally wrote the blueprint for the establishment of the Rwanda Stock Exchange (RSE) and worked with Ghana, Namibia and Botswana on the establishment of their exchanges.
Dyer & Blair Investment Bank was also named in the awards as the Best Investment Bank, Best Lead Transaction Advisor, the Best Bonds Dealer of the Year, and won the overall investment industry Customer Service Award. In addition, it won three runners up awards, for Best Stock Broker, Best Equities Dealer, and Best Research Team.
“These awards, and our position as the country’s Best Investment Bank, alongside all the associated awards that go into securing that accolade, represent the fruit of our ongoing innovation and leadership, technologically and in the calibre of our teams,” said Mr Jimnah Mbaru, Chairman of Dyer & Blair Investment Bank.
Among many recent milestones, the bank was the first in Kenya to introduce a mobile share trading app. The Dyer & Blair Edge, which allows users to trade shares from their phones, has already drawn more than 1000 downloads, and additionally enables investors to track their investment portfolios, develop a watch list, and receive research information. The app is available in both Android and IoS for Apple on Google Play and Apple Store. Dyer & Blair was also the first bank to launch an Online Share Trading platform and integrate MPESA as a payment method.
The Think Business Africa awards recognise and confer merit on companies leading the dynamic and fast-paced changes in the securities exchange and investments sectors in Kenya. The judging process involves research into key areas of performance, including corporate governance, financial soundness, product and systems innovation, and customer services.
For Dyer & Blair, the new awards follow from being named in the EMEA Finance African Banking Awards 2016 as the Best Broker In Kenya and Best Equity House, while in the Bankers Africa 2016 awards, Dyer & Blair was named as the Best Investment Bank in Kenya.