Starting a business as a youth in Kenya should be included in a thousand ways to die. This i say having had started and operated a tech company in Kenya.
Megashift started with the aim of building custom cloud solutions for small and medium enterprises
in Kenya and have since pivoted and focused on HR tech by launching a cloud payroll and HR
software called crew hr https://crew.africa/.
Running a business as a youth is challenging and requires resilience and patience and more so when you don’t have capital to support your operations early on when your business has not broken even. This is where the government came in.
As a youth I had a strong hate (entitlement I guess) toward the government and I always felt there was little being done to support the youth like me who have a vision to create employment. However, this has changed in the last couple of years and I must commend the government for this. The ease of doing business as a youth has greatly improved. Currently you can register a company as a sole founder online with as little as Ksh 10,000 this is supported by any Huduma center or ECitizen portal.
Fast forward, the Government has provided so many opportunities for the youth to take advantage of. Last year but one the Government of Kenya through MSEA and KYEOP and Word Bank launched a competition dubbed as MbeleNaBiz . The MbeleNaBiz business plan competition (“MbeleNaBiz”) is an initiative of the Government of Kenya, under the Kenya Youth Employment and Opportunities Project (KYEOP). MbeleNaBiz aims to expand new and existing youth-led enterprises by providing them with grant funding and/or business plan training.
We took part in this competition and emerged as winners and were awarded Ksh 1000,000 to grow our business. There have been other initiatives to support the youth which shows there is still hope as a youth in Kenya. Because of this grant investment our company has grown and has attracted more investors in form of grants.
The Youth need to stay woke, understand that no one will bring opportunities to your door step, you have to wake up and be deliberate about searching for these opportunities that are meant to benefit you.
Let’s stop whining left and right, the Government can only do so much and it’s our responsibility to create opportunities for ourselves and our generations to come.
“The best time to plant a tree was 20 years ago. The second best time is now.”
Written By Peter Muchemi
CEO Megashift Technologies Limited