[Kenya Business Week] Competition, customer service drive expansion binge
As customers increasingly demand top notch services and competition reaches fever pitch, companies are investing millions to improve infrastructure and service quality, boost customer relations and expand their portfolio. This week has been no different.
Telecommunication company Telkom has invested KSh. 1 billion into the expansion and optimization of its 4G and 3G network.The network roll-out will see to the improvement of mobile connectivity, boosting the quality of service to customers. This comes a month after the telco launched Free Zones for its pre-paid voice customers. The company has in the recent past entered into numerous partnerships including with Loon, European Investment Bank, unveiled 200 new 4G sites in Nairobi, leasing its 723 communication towers to American Tower Corporation, unveiling its mobile money platform
and appointing Mugo Kibati as CEO.
Digital lender Branch International has also announced its largest commercial paper issuance to date, raising Ksh500 million, for local expansion as demand for mobile loans soars. It had previously raised Sh200 million to boost its loan portfolio. Last year, it partnered with Visa to offer custom financing to merchants.
The Kenya Revenue Authority (KRA) has set the target of raising revenue to GDP ratio from current 18.3 per cent in 2017/18 to 19.2 per cent in 2020/21 by raising the number of active taxpayers from 3.94 million to 7 million. To seal tax evasion loophooles, the taxman has been upgrading its system to match current needs and invested in cargo tracking system.
The Kenyan government has called on local motor vehicle assemblers to innovate ways of producing quality vehicles that are affordable for Kenyans while discouraging the buying of imported used vehicles which are currently selling at lower prices than those assembled locally. The call came three years after German car maker Volkswagen made a comeback in Kenya after four decades production hiatus and promised to double production while introducing a new model.
Taxi hailing company Uber has this week launched UberASSIST in Narobi which has been designed to provide additional assistance for members of the senior and disabled communities. This is the latest of a series of partnerships and new features the company has announced including launching UberBoda motorcycle services, introducing e-payments partnering with Sidian Bank to allow drivers purchase their own vehicles and working with Zindi to to optimize public transportation in Nairobi. This, as it seeks to weather growing competition from rivals Little Cab and Taxify.
Telco Systems has announced that it has completed an upgrade of the carrier Ethernet network of Kenya Education Network (KENET), the National Research and Education Network (NREN) of Kenya, from 10GE to 100GE.