Pezesha recently showcased its revolutionary digital lending infrastructure at the 3rd SMEs Conference and Expo, convened at the Kenyatta International Convention Center (KICC) in Nairobi, Kenya. The event was held jointly by the Nation Media Group with the Ministry of Industrialization Trade and Enterprise Development, Micro and Small Enterprise Authority(MSEA), and the Kenya National Chamber of Commerce and Industry (KNCCI).
The 3-day event featured exhibitors, policymakers, parastatal heads, business leaders, and small business owners under the theme: Making the SME sector competitive amid covid-19; a multi-stakeholder approach. The event kicked off with a multistakeholder’s conference with a few highlights on the SME landscape in Kenya, the key being the need to make small and medium enterprises (SMEs) in Kenya competitive. The conference set the tone for the expo where we interacted for hours on end with small business owners, entrepreneurs, and other exhibitors.
Our vibrant team took the time to share core tenets of our mission to provide affordable working capital to underserved SMEs in Kenya and prevent them from falling into the ‘missing middle’ - a gap between microfinance and commercial lending that precludes SMEs with limited data from access to finance. Our revolutionary digital lending infrastructure is inching towards closing the $90Billion SME financing gap in Kenya through a range of financing options: working capital financing, Invoice financing, LPO financing, and supply chain financing.
In the midst of a tonne of activities at the expo, our bespoke and elegant exhibition stand attracted dozens of attendees eager to hear our pitch on how they can get in on the action, to scale their businesses affordably. Reminiscing about the call from the Chief Administrative Secretary for industrialization, to address the competitiveness of SMEs in Kenya, we shared how we have taken up the burden of SMEs financing as one of our primary burdens.
Pezesha’s holistic digital platform enables SMEs in the supply chains to access affordable inventory and working capital including other financial products such as trade financing, LPO financing, and Float financing. We take an embedded approach to enable productive credit to merchants of suppliers such as Twiga Foods, Marketforce, Jumia, Zumi, iPay among others.
Various players in the SMEs ecosystem lauded our embedded financing approach which allows us to partner with suppliers to access their pool of merchants and provide them with affordable credit offerings to finance their orders. This approach has given us access to a potential of more than 100,000 merchants through partnerships with key suppliers such as Twiga Foods and online retailers such as Jumia Kenya. By integrating our credit infrastructure in their value chains, their merchants can seamlessly access real-time credit offerings to restock their businesses and increase their basket size.
Pezesha’s ‘direct SME’ financing option also received notable praise through its seamless origination process which guarantees a fast loan processing period of utmost 3 days - a timeline cited as ‘business efficient’ by small business owners whom we interacted with. Our risk-based credit scoring approach further alleviates the challenges underpinning the stagnation of SMEs by ensuring they understand their credit risks and in turn provide them with financial education tools to better understand their cash flow and manage their debts, ultimately reducing the pricing of their credit offering.
Having raised the bar for SME financing at the expo, we witnessed increased traffic to our stands with emotive acknowledgments of our mission from some of the attendees; The sentiments brought to light our Post Covid-19 flexible financing frameworks which included loan restructuring and free financial education for small businesses which were adversely affected by the pandemic and were not resilient enough to hold.
“ Small businesses in Kenya have suffered for a long time due to the challenges of accessing credit, especially from banks. Thank you Pezesha for coming through during this difficult time!”
The expo was indeed an exhilarating one, networking with various industry players and small business owners, some of whom were oblivious of their economic vulnerabilities. Pezesha remains committed to retaining the hat for the leading embedded finance partner for players in the supply chain ecosystem and the go-to credit provider for small businesses in Kenya and Sub-saharan Africa.