Airtel offers unique data plans with the new Samsung Galaxy S6

Airtel Kenya has announced that it will offer unique data plans to customers who purchase the new Samsung s6 from selected Airtel outlets across the country starting today.

Customers who purchase the Samsung S6 FLAT32GB which goes for Ksh. 74, 999 will get 3GB data per month for 3 months. Customers who purchase the Samsung S6 EDGE 32GB or the Samsung S6 EDGE 64GB which goes for Ksh. 82,999 and Ksh. 94, 999 respectively will get 4GB data per month for 4 months.

Airtel Kenya CEO Adil El Youssefi said;

“The new Samsung S6 from Airtel will enable our customers acquire state of the art handsets and unique innovative data offers such as the #unlimiNET with unique data plans that offers them the freedom to make #UnlimitedConnections to their professional, family and social networks through the internet with a seamless experience our world-class quality network.”

The brand new handsets will be available at selected Airtel express shops and at its leading partner shops countrywide. Customers can purchase the latest phone from the following Airtel shops: Parkside shop, Kisumu Shop, Greenspan Mall Shop, Sarit Centre shop, Koinange shop, Moi Avenue shop, Thika Road Mall (TRM) Express Plus shop, Mombasa Moi Avenue shop, Nyali shop, Galleria, Lavington, Village Market, Nyeri shop and Eldoret Shop.

The latest Samsung model is described as the “most innovative, re-defined and high performance.” The phone has received the special honour of “Best New Handset, Tablet or Device” from the GSMA at Mobile World Congress 2015. The award recognises the best new device launched during the show. This is the second consecutive year Samsung received this award, following the Samsung Gear Fit in 2014.

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BRITAM brands Nyayo National Stadium

Diversified financial services group, British-American Investments Company Limited (Britam) has been granted exclusive rights to brand the Nyayo National Stadium in Nairobi for the next two years.

Under the KSh100 million deal with Sports Kenya, Britam has been granted the rights to brand the 32 year old facility. This includes: the main stadium, indoor arena, handball and volleyball courts, basketball court, VIP room, and the stadium’s aquatic area.

Britam will be allowed to advertise and display its products and services within the stadium and its premises; in addition to getting sales and marketing opportunities during local and International games and other events taking place in the stadium.

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Speaking at Nyayo National Stadium in Nairobi today during a media briefing to unveil the deal, the Cabinet Secretary for Sports Culture and the Arts Dr. Hassan Wario said that he was pleased to preside over the launch of the Branding and refurbishment of the Nyayo National Stadium – dubbed the Arena of Champions.

“This event is to unveil a collaborative achievement to improve sports and sports facilities in this country. Development of sports and the associated infrastructure is one of the key pillars of my ministry as envisaged in its mandate,” he added.

Dr. Wario said that his ministry had put in place policy guidelines that would facilitate and encourage all stakeholders from both   the public and the private sector to work together for the betterment of sports in the country.

Britam Director for Marketing and Corporate Affairs Muthoga Ngera noted that the strategic partnership with Sports Kenya would significantly support the development of sports in the country.

“We are very excited about this new opportunity. We are proud to be associated with Nyayo National Stadium, which remains an iconic facility in the country and the natural venue of choice for local and international sports tournaments as well as national celebrations and other high profile events,” he said.

He noted that Britam had identified sports marketing as one of its key strategic focus areas to grow and enhance the group’s brand visibility.

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On his part, Mr. Gabriel Komora, the acting Director General of Sports Kenya said:

“We are happy to welcome Britam on board. Corporate Kenya has a critical role to play in developing and enhancing sports facilities in the country. We are encouraged that Britam has taken up this challenge. It is through such strategic partnerships that Kenya will be able to inch closer to upgrading her sports facilities to international standards”.

Nyayo National Stadium, which will retain its name, remains under the maintenance and management of Sports Kenya.

Britam was awarded the sole branding rights after a competitive bidding process

About British-American Investments Company (Kenya) Limited

Britam is a leading diversified financial services group, listed on the Nairobi Securities Exchange. The group has interests across the Eastern Africa region. The company offers a wide range of financial products and services in Insurance, Asset management, Banking and Property. The product range includes: life, health and general insurance, pensions, unit trusts, investment planning, wealth management, off-shore investments, retirement planning, discretionary portfolio management, property development and private equity.

For more information please contact: Muthoga Ngera, Director, Marketing and Corporate Affairs on email mngera@britam.co.ke or visit http://www.britam.co.ke.

Safaricom plans to bring M-Pesa Home

Safaricom (NSE: SCOM) has announced that it has started final preparations for the launch of the second generation of its M-PESA platform as it prepares to perform a full scale system upgrade aimed at improving efficiencies and speed over the next week.

Safaricom had first announced plans to replace its M-PESA platform last year, seeking to migrate the current platform to an enhanced platform that will allow for faster transactions, improved stability as well as enable more functionality from the service.

“This is a milestone moment for the M-PESA platform as we embark on our final preparations ahead of the full migration process. We anticipate this new platform will unlock a new era of transformational mobile financial services.” said Betty Mwangi, General Manager – Financial Services, Safaricom.

Over the last six months, Safaricom has met a number of key milestones as it progresses on its journey to migrate the entire M-PESA platform to Kenya, including conducting a number of dry runs to ensure that stability and uptime are restored as soon as possible after the migration.

The company will be integrating all existing internal systems including security, redundancy and disaster recovery on the new platform. The Central Bank of Kenya and the Communications Authority of Kenya have been provided with oversight over the entire migration process to ensure that Safaricom meets its stated goals with minimal disruption to the customer.

“What this means is that we are not only offering faster speeds and more secure transactions to our customers, we are also creating the foundation for a more accessible system that will further enable the rapidly growing mobile money ecosystem in Kenya to continue to grow and be fuelled by locally created solutions,” said Ms. Mwangi.

Additional benefits of the new system will extend to enhanced system stability due to reduction in points of failure; functional flexibility that will allow a wider range of customer services; easier integration onto M-PESA for 3rd Parties; and improved business continuity for continued service availability.

About Safaricom

Safaricom transforms lives. We provide voice, data, financial services and enterprise solutions for a range of subscribers, small businesses and government, using a variety of platforms.

As the biggest communication company in East and Central Africa, Safaricom has delights over 21 million subscribers, providing over 200,000 touch points for its customers and offering over 100 different products under its portfolio.

With annual revenues in excess of Kshs 100 Billion, Safaricom invested Kshs 27.78 billion in infrastructure in 2014, providing over half of Kenya’s population with 3G coverage and providing 2G coverage to 90% of Kenyans. Safaricom owns its proprietary fibre infrastructure and recently launched 4G services in Nairobi and Mombasa, and is in the process of building a dedicated enterprise business to provide managed services to clients in the East African region.

Safaricom pioneered commercial mobile money transfer globally through M-PESA, the most successful such service anywhere in the world. Launched in March 2007 as a money transfer service, M-PESA now has over 19 million customers and over 81,000 Agent outlets countrywide.

3 Reasons Twitter Marketing is Crucial for Small Businesses!

I am very excited about this post since we are going to talk about a very important subject, a subject that i am particularly interested in and i feel you should be as well: the importance of Twitter Marketing for Small Businesses!

Very recently i came across the following statement: “Small businesses miss tremendous opportunities to extend their reach and deepen their brand loyalty when they leave Twitter to the large companies, local teenagers, and celebrities of the world”.

According to Paul Chaloner (Head of Social Media at Fresh Egg): “If you run a large corporation – Dell, McDonald’s or Coca Cola – social media must seem pretty easy. You have a ton of fans and followers who lap up everything you throw at them (good and bad). You could be a terrible marketer on a large brand and still benefit from social media. But what about those of us running small businesses, or who work on our own? How do we benefit from social media such as Twitter? We all know social media CAN be beneficial, but when resources are limited and hardly anyone has heard of your business, you can’t afford to produce multi-million pound campaigns across a multitude of social networks. So what do you do?”

Read more: 3 Reasons Twitter Marketing is Crucial for Small Businesses!.

CS Treasury KCB Islamic Banking Launch Speech

Good Morning, Salaam Aleikum,

It is a great pleasure for me to join you this morning on this important occasion as you officially launch KCB Shari’ah Banking in the market. I wish to express my sincere appreciation for the invitation to this important occasion which I believe is a positive step towards the transformation of the Banking industry in Kenya which has experienced exponential growth over the past decade.

The entry of Islamic banking institutions in the country is an initiative that my ministry has been advocating for and encouraging industry players to venture into it, because of the enormous potential that this form of banking holds for our economy. I am glad that more conventional banks are following this path to enable formerly unbanked Kenyans, specifically those in the Muslim community and rural areas, to access financial services that support their religious faith.

Ladies and Gentlemen;

As you may be aware, Kenya and the East African Region has increasingly become an attractive destination for investments from various economic players who want to tap in to the Islamic Banking portfolio. With our sound economic base, the future can only be bright for investors who wish to invest in this area of banking.

 Kenya’s economic blueprint Vision 2030 envisions Kenya as a premier financial services hub in the region with a wide range of competitive products and services. One of the ways of achieving this goal is ensuring that Kenya becomes the gateway for Shariah-compliant financing, through establishment of an enabling environment that supports the development of Shariah-compliant financial services and products.

This can only be achieved when industry stakeholders come together to address some of the challenges that Islamic Banking faces which include inadequate qualified personnel who have knowledge on Shariah Banking and inadequate Islamic Banking products to serve the interests of the different customers. The onus therefore is on us to look at ways in which we can address these concerns progressively and in a comprehensive manner.

Ladies and Gentlemen;

The government is in the final stages of issuing its debut sukuk component of infrastructure bonds which we see as being an important tool through which we shall be able to raise cash to fund our development projects. We are also putting in place prudent Islamic Banking guidelines that will guide the operations of Islamic financing in the country. We shall continue to support the Islamic banking framework for conducting financial transactions which we believe has the potential to change the overall economic outlook for the country.

 Globally, the Islamic finance market is growing. Islamic finance investments are now worth $1.6 trillion and are forecast to increase to $2.5 trillion by 2015. I am happy to note that in Kenya, Shariah-compliant products, command a market share of 2 per cent of the banking sector with most Kenyans now taking up these products. It follows therefore that institutions providing Islamic banking products need to come up with products tailor-made to suit the need of their customers. This is in line with our development goals to ensure accelerated and inclusive economic growth for all Kenyans.

In conclusion I wish to reiterate my Ministry’s willingness to work with all stakeholders to create an enabling environment for the successful operations of Shariah banking in the country. I congratulate KCB Board and management for spearheading this initiative and also the Sharia Advisory Board for supporting the Bank in its implementation.

With those remarks, it is now my humble duty to declare KCB Sahal Banking officially launched.

Thank you

KCB Formally Launches Sahl Banking (Islamic Banking)

KCB Group CEO Joshua Oigara addresses guests at the launch of KCB Sahl Banking.

KCB Group CEO Joshua Oigara addresses guests at the launch of KCB Sahl Banking.

KCB Group has launched its Islamic Banking unit as it seeks to tap into the growing demand for Islamic financial products across the East African region.

The launch paves the way for the full roll-out of Sharia’h compliant products under the proposition dubbed “KCB Sahl Banking”, after getting all the necessary regulatory approvals.

KCB Group Chairman Mr. Ngeny Biwott said the launch is part of the Bank’s long term vision to diversify its product offering while riding on technology as it reaches out to more citizens across East African and beyond who feel left out by the conventional banking system.

“This chapter is a milestone for our financial inclusion and deepening agenda for the banking and financial services sector to be accessed by everyone in the region,” said Mr. Biwott. “Looking ahead into the next three years, this product will progressively facilitate development in the marginalized areas and deepen financial coverage”.

In addition to the Kenyan operation, KCB Bank Tanzania is offering Islamic Banking services which is well supported with the regulatory framework that is in place.

The KCB Sahl Banking (easy banking) roll out aims to provide Shariah compliant banking product, that prohibits the giving or receiving of interest and ensures that money is invested ethically in accordance with the Islamic faith.

The KCB Group Chief Executive Joshua Oigara said that with everything in place, the Bank is ready to revolutionize the Islamic Banking space in the country.

“As a Bank, we are continuously looking for ways in which we can offer the best services to our customers. This is the reason why we are constantly innovating our products so that they meet their financial needs.  The offering we are launching today is a Shariah compliant bank account designed to address the sensitivities of this group of customers”, said Mr Oigara.

The Islamic form of banking which targets both Muslims and non-Muslims has continued to gain traction globally with latest statistics from the World Bank indicating that global Shariah compliant financial assets have increased significantly over the past three decades, reaching about US$1 trillion in 2010 up from about US$ 5 billion in the late 1980s. It is expected that Islamic banking assets will grow at a 19.7 per cent over 2013-2018 to reach US$ 1.6 Trillion by 2018. Currently, Sharia’h banking products account for 2 percent share of the market share in Kenya.

Speaking during the launch, Cabinet Secretary National Treasury, Henry Rotich said that the government will continually review the Banking Act and Prudential Guidelines to reflect this new reality as is the case in South Africa, Europe, the United States, Canada, the Middle East, and Australia.

For a start, KCB will roll out the Islamic Banking products in six of its branches as ahead of a national roll-out. The branches are KCB Eastleigh, Kimathi Street, and Hurlingham in Nairobi; Mwembe Tayari and Town Centre in Mombasa; Garissa and Wajir in North Eastern and Lamu.  These satellite branches will serve as an operating model as the Bank seeks to enhance quality growth to create sustainable shareholder value.

The Bank has so far created various asset and liability products under the Sahl Banking proposition among them Mudharaba, Qard Hassan, Wadia, Murabhaha, Musharaka and ijara.

Fanisi in USD 2.1million deal with European Foods Africa Limited

A model poses next to the Dr. Oetker line of frozen pizzas marketed and distributed across Kenyan supermarkets by European Foods Africa Limited.

A model poses next to the Dr. Oetker line of frozen pizzas marketed and distributed across Kenyan supermarkets by European Foods Africa Limited.

Fanisi Capital has invested USD 2.1 million in a mid-sized Kenyan based food company to expand the private equity firm’s investment footprint across East Africa’s vibrant food processing sector.

European Foods Africa Limited (EFAL), will use the funds invested in form of debt and equity to support its growth strategy across the country and strengthen its operational systems and ensure stability.

Tony Wainaina, Managing Partner at Fanisi Capital said the deal was an affirmation of the increasing number of well-run local small-to-medium enterprises who are tapping into the region’s growing population and the rising economic prospects to create investment value.

”We are supporting a strong entrepreneur who has developed a good understanding of the evolving local consumer preferences over several years, and has identified a niche product whose demand continues to grow.” Said Mr. Wainaina.

EFAL is a local medium sized enterprise involved in the cold chain frozen foods distribution and value addition business. The company distributes its products, which include quality pizzas, whole berries and fresh berry beverages that appeal to the health conscious consumer, to a wide client base that includes supermarkets, grocery stores and restaurants in Nairobi and Mombasa.

Stephan Belzer-EFAL’s Chief Executive Officer said, “Fanisi’s support and resources will drive the business to differentiate its brand through quality frozen product offering a stable and reliable cold chain system”

With the combined population of the East African Community expected to hit 240 million people by 2019, EFAL intends to leverage this opportunity by increasing its product offering and widening its regional customer base.

Fanisi has already made significant inroads into the regional food processing sector to give it a strong footing in East Africa’s agriculture processing, retail and consumer space.

The private equity firm has invested in Ngare Narok Meat Industries Limited a meat processing and distribution/retail business in Kenya, and ProDev Group Holdings in Rwanda, a grain handling business (sourcing, drying, storing, trading, purchasing, milling and animal feed production) in Rwanda.

About Fanisi Capital

Fanisi Venture Capital Fund is a USD 50 million fund that makes private equity and venture capital investments in businesses with potential for substantial growth in the East African countries of Kenya, Uganda, Tanzania and Rwanda. Founded in 2009, Fanisi’s makes investments across diverse industry sectors with emphasis on agro-processing, healthcare, education and retail consumer (FMCG). Fanisi has a principal focus on companies that are post revenue with profits or a clear path towards profits.

Dark and Lovely is now available on Jumia!

Dark and Lovely is now partnering with leading online retailer Jumia to allow women all across Kenya to enjoy the quality and safety of genuine Dark and Lovely products at the convenience of their home.
Simply log on to http://darkandlovely.jumia.co.ke  to pick your favorite Dark and Lovely products at affordable prices, and have them delivered to your home or office anywhere in Kenya! Jumia offers you the option to pay cash on delivery, mobile money transfer, online banking and credit card, and has a customer care service always at hand to ensure a stress-free shopping experience, fast next-day delivery with free returns and exchanges within 7 days.
To celebrate this launch Dark and Lovely and Jumia are offering a 10% discount to the first 100 customers.
About Dark and Lovely
Dark and Lovely is an international high quality brand with more than 40 years of expertise in hair care. By combining technologically advanced formulations with salon inspiration, Dark and Lovely’s mission is to allow all women of African descent to express their own beauty in an outstanding way.
For more information, log on to www.darkandlovely.co.ke.

“Retweet With Comment” Feature officially launched by Twitter

Twitter just officially launched its “retweet with comment” feature, which it began testing last summer.

“Retweet with comment” allows users to embed a tweet in their own tweets, which lets them get around Twitter’s 140-character limit when they write their own commentary. The feature is now available on Twitter’s site and iPhone app and will be available on its Android app soon.

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Twitter previously let users embed quoted tweets by cutting-and-pasting its URL, but “retweet and comment” lets you do that by just pressing a button. The feature’s arrival has been heralded with much (somewhat ironic) rejoicing by Twitter users. Unfortunately, you can’t embed the full retweet and comment, as I just found out to my disconcertment while preparing this post (click on the embedded tweets to see how they look in the wild).

As Sarah Perez pointed out last year, however, the feature serves a serious purpose. For one thing, it allows people to share and comment on tweets without having to shorten the original tweet, which means that its context and meaning is preserved.

Forcing users to truncate their rambling thoughts into pithy soundbites was one of Twitter’s original charms, but as the platform matures, many influential users have been devising ways of getting around the character limit so they can use Twitter as their main public communication platform instead of, say, a blog. Hence the rise of “tweetstorms,” which were initially derided by many long-time Twitter users, but show no signs of abating.

Another popular way of getting around Twitter’s enforced brevity is posting screenshots of quotes from articles. This inspired the app OneShot, made as a side project by Twitter veteran Jason Goldman, a former VP of product at Twitter.

Of course, hacking Twitter’s character limit is nothing new. Users have been figuring out ways to enable their loquacity since the platform was launched with products like TwitLonger and JumboTweet. The official rollout of Twitter’s “retweet with comment” feature just puts an imprimatur on one kind of longform tweet.

Unfortunately, the feature only lets you quote one layer of tweets, so if you’re out of luck if you were hoping to perform a retweetception.

Via TechCrunch

Law and social media training; Kisumu edition

BAKE is happy to inform all residents of Kisumu that they will be having a training on Law and Social media on 11th April 2015.

This will take place at LakeHub, Harleys Building on Oginga Odinga Street next to I & M Bank at 9am to 2pm.

Entry is FREE The guest speaker will be Mr. Mugambi Laibuta who is an Advocate for the High Court of Kenya.

Below are the main topics that will be discussed

The Legal system,

Defamation,;

Criminal Law Process,

Communication Laws,

Privacy,

Confidentiality,

Intellectual Property,

Consumer Law and

Social Media Policies.

BAKE Law

via bloggers.or.ke.