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25 Women graduate from the Unilever Kenya Entrepreneurship Programme

Unilever has officially commissioned the 1st cohort of 25 entrepreneurial women graduates who participated in the Emerge Supplier Acceleration Programme during their graduation ceremony in Nairobi on Thursday.

State Department for Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs) Principal Secretary (PS) Susan Mangeni in her speech expressed the government’s intention to expand the private sector so as to make the economy productive.

“There is a need for the private sector to work with the government to make sure that our industrialization strategy succeeds,” Mangeni.

The PS urged Unilever to decentralize the program to county levels in order to reach many other entrepreneurs in the country and create job opportunities.

Unilever Managing Director Luck Ochieng stated that they discovered there are many women entrepreneurs who lack the skills and capabilities to run and manage their businesses and therefore decided to support them.

In 2021 Unilever made a global commitment to drive localization to the extent of making available over €2 billion to people who are under-represented in business, and these tend to be women, youth, and people abled differently.

Mr Ochieng further highlighted the objectives of this programme one being to assist the MSMES to be able to audit and improve their businesses and operations, making them more efficient and effective.

The program also aims at helping MSMES access finance and opportunities to pitch for their businesses and secure the funding that they would need.

Unilever also intends to create an environment where people can learn about businesses, be able to network, and get to partner with other businesses.

The graduates also got to learn the right legal skills and capabilities to navigate the environment they are in.

The Kenya Private Sector Alliance Director for MSME’S Madam Mary Ngechu encouraged the graduates to embrace the heavy industries that are mainly dominated by men.

By Shamim Kambi

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