Dr Nyambura Koigi

CEO's Profile

Theme |
Topic | Building Youth Entrepreneurs through Savings & Investments
MONTH | March 2014

Building Youth Entrepreneurs through Savings & Investmentss

Discussion Focus Area

  • Building wealth through savings and investment groups.
  • The role of government programs to address the rising youth unemployment in the country.
  • Access to credit from Financial Institutions and impact of macroeconomic factors (e.g. Inflation, interest rates, exchange rates, GDP per capita growth rates.)
  • Role of banks in promoting a savings as a potential tool to for wealth creation.

Youth unemployment has been singled out as one of the most important global social issues of our times, and as such governments and private sector players are engaging on how to stimulate employment through economic development, while promoting alternative income approaches targeting this burgeoning population segment.

Savings is directly correlated to investments. Increasingly, pooling resources has proven to be the most effective starting point for both individuals and small groups, including youth entrepreneurs, to build wealth. In addition to pooling funds, investing as a group allows members to gain new perspectives from others and thereby build capacity.

East Africa and in particular Kenya is popularly known for its involvement with peer-to-peer or group savings and lending; a practice which is also referred to as “table banking”, "micro-savings groups," investment clubs, or “chamas”. It is possible that this deeply rooted “chama” culture in Kenya stems from the country’s history that was anchored on the spirit of ‘harambee’ or working together towards social and economic development.

One of Kenya’s most revered “chama” success stories is Transcentury, which started as a group of 29 members and has grown into a successful investment corporation listed on the Nairobi Securities Exchange.