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A manufacturing unit. The Kenya Catalytic Jobs Fund is now accepting applications from suitable entrepreneurs who will take home up to Sh13 million if they are selected. [Photo/KAM]

If you own a business in Kenya and you need funding to boost its growth, then this is the time for you to try get the money.

The Kenya Catalytic Jobs Fund is now accepting applications from suitable entrepreneurs who will take home up to Sh13 million (GBP100, 000) if they are selected.

The £5M UK – Aid-funded programme is designed to test and support innovative enterprises that have the potential to catalyse job creation for the youth and vulnerable populations in Kenya, at scale.

“The fund seeks to support innovations aimed at increasing international competitiveness in agriculture and manufacturing; support innovations aimed at raising productivity and/or supporting shifts into the formal sector; diversify risks and access larger, longer duration loans in order to grow micro-enterprises; catalyse sustainable change in sectors and geographies that have the potential to create employment and increase incomes for disadvantaged groups, including women and people living with disabilities (including semi-arid lands),” notes the Fund on its website.

KCJF says, “Application is now open through which five winning local businesses will be selected and granted up to GBP100,000 in financial and technical support to encourage business growth, job creation and improvement of livelihoods.”

Here is an explanation of what the programme is about and some of the winners:

Who is eligible to apply for fund?

The Kenya Catalytic Jobs Fund is designed to support a broad range of enterprises including early-stage and mature enterprises as well as non-profit organisations that meet the following criterion;

  • Is legally registered and operates in Kenya
  • Is implementing an innovative solution(s) that addresses felt needs
  • Is able to demonstrate the minimum viable product/post proof of concept for the innovative solution
  • Is able to demonstrate initial investments into the innovative solution
  • Has the potential to grow exponentially, create more jobs and improve livelihoods at scale.

Government organisations, political parties and organisations that advocate, or espouse anti-democratic policies or i*****l activities are not eligible to receive funding from the KCJF.

Here’s the application process.

Grant funds provided under the Kenya Catalytic Jobs Fund can support any activities that directly contribute to the desired impact, which is to create jobs, increase income for youth and vulnerable populations in target sectors and geographies associated with increased or improved productive opportunities.

Eligible activities include but are not limited to growth and expansion of existing innovative solutions, the introduction of new tech-based solutions, expansion to new markets for products, value addition and micro-level processing, and provision of educational and/or skill-building services.

KCJF says that the application for funding under the Business Innovation Challenge is open to all small and medium-sized enterprises that meet the eligibility criterion above. The applications will be evaluated by a team of reviewers who will select 10 finalists, who will then proceed to participate in a business competition after which five successful enterprises will be selected by a team of judges and funded.

To enter the Business Innovation Challenge, applicants must complete an online application form by logging into the website of the Kenya Catalytic Jobs Fund and providing all the requested information.

All applications must be submitted on or before 11:59pm. EAT on Sunday 15th March 2020. Read >>

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