People Are The Heart Of Every Business – Adam Jones

By Juma / June 29, 2020 | 10:16 am




Small Business Enterprises (SMEs) have an opportunity to capitalize on the COVID-19 pandemic by embracing technology through e-commerce and going cashless to sail through to the next level.

The pandemic has hit hard on the majority of SMEs. Millions across the world have shut down leaving millions of people jobless. What is the impact of the pandemic on the Kenyan SME? Are the plans put in place to cushion the SMEs working?

According to Adam Jones, the Area Business Head at Mastercard, in East Africa, SMEs in Kenya will sail through the pandemic through inclusion. He said Inclusion is the starting point but it’s everyday use and value that makes it something to celebrate with the SMEs.

Mr. Jones says that SMEs should not give up because this is an opportunity for them to flourish. “We have shown that things will flourish in an interconnected world. This is my big take away from this pandemic.”

Mr. Jones was part of the panel that was unpacking the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic on SMEs during the NMG Leadership Forum held live on NTV Kenya. Other panelists were Eran Feinstein, Co-Founder, and CEO of DPO Group, Shiko Gitau who sits in the ICT Advisory Committee, and Nasim Devji, Group CEO and Managing Director at Diamond Trust Bank.

According to Mr. Jones, nothing matters to SMEs than human capital. “Human capital is the most important part. Goods can always be procured but it is the people who are the heart of it all,” he said. “SMEs are the lifeblood of all economies globally. They represent 77 percent of employment and over half of the GDP.”

According to stats 46.3 percent of MSMEs in Kenya close within the first year of operation, only 20.0 percent live to celebrate their fifth birthday. Stats by the Kenya National Bureau of Statists of 2016 indicated that over 450,000 SMEs were dying annually, 30,000 monthly, and at least 1,000 daily. With COVID-19 in place, the numbers might be higher.

The pandemic should not just be viewed as a challenge but a stepping stone for SMEs to embrace the use of technology. E-commerce is one of the ways that will make SMEs sail through COVID-19. “It is important that we support SMEs during this difficult time and I believe it’s the technology that will steer businesses going forward,” said Nasim Devji.

Mr. Feinstein, on his part, said that Kenya was better placed in leading the continent in e-commerce giver her rich history in mobile transactions. “Kenya is at the forefront of the rise of e-commerce in Africa due to mobile money transactions.”

To ensure security during transactions, SMEs should embrace the use of safe and secure channels such as Mastercard. “Mastercard QR has a low entry barrier for merchants making it easier to offer this safe, quick & convenient payment option to customers. This contributes to a cashless society & limits exposure to theft,” said Mr. Jones.





About Juma

Juma is an enthusiastic journalist who believes that journalism has power to change the world either negatively or positively depending on how one uses it.(020) 528 0222 or Email: info@sokodirectory.com

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