FIT Resources Limited is a Kenyan based enterprise development agency promoting growth of Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) in the region by supporting Business Development Service (BDS) providers.
FIT promotes sustainable BDS for SMEs in partnership with the donor community, governments and the private sector to ensure business growth and contribute to poverty alleviation.
FIT aims to improve the supply of sustainable services that are critical to the entry, survival, productivity, competitiveness and growth of SMEs. FIT believes that effective BDS provision will increase enterprise growth and generate employment as one instrument of sustainable private sector development.
This requires a range of integrated services, and since FIT cannot reach the population of MSMEs as a whole, it helps create and nurture market players that can develop, commercialize and multiply such services. FIT promotes systemic market development via the facilitation of the private sector and strengthening of value chain systems including support markets with emphasis on performance and impact.
FIT is part of an International network of organizations initiated by ILO in the early 90s, in six African Countries in East, Central and West Africa. FIT Resources offers exceptional collective knowledge and experience in innovative approaches to agricultural and enterprise development; with a range of skills in sub sector and cross sector approaches to increasing private sector enterprise incomes through the provision of business development services.
What we do
FIT implements activities aimed at facilitating market improvement by increasing demand and/or improving supply.
Key facilitation areas include:
- Market access such as export readiness assessment and preparation, market analysis, market information, developing marketing strategies, identifying market niches, developing market linkages and identifying/ establishing new markets, organising and implementing trade fairs and product exhibitions, product and sample development and packaging and advertising.
- Input supply such as linking MSMEs to raw materials and production suppliers, improving suppliers’ capacity to provide regular supply of quality inputs, facilitating the establishment of bulk buying groups and providing information on input supply sources.
- Training and technical assistance such as mentoring, identification of economic opportunities, feasibility studies and business plans, management training, operational audits and Impact assessments, counseling/advisory services, develop sustainable training and technical assistance products plus fostering links between service providers and enterprises.
- Technology and product development such as quality assurance and design services for new and improved products that respond to market demand.
- Financing mechanisms such as facilitating supplier credit through signposting and referrals and liaising with MFIs to develop appropriate credit products for SMEs.
FIT’s work as a BDS facilitator focuses on influencing individuals and organisations to engage in different ways of doing business in such a manner that does not create dependency or undermine their ability to solve their own problems. It’s about visioning and engaging partners via indirect interventions such as relationship and awareness building, brokering linkages and networking.
FIT’s specific experience
FIT has specific experience in the following:
Research, Monitoring and Evaluation
FIT undertakes research to inform its interventions and those of its clients. Consequently, FIT also monitors and evaluates projects.
Recent research work undertaken by FIT includes:
- A media driven knowledge framework targeting smallholder farmers and off farm business activities in Shinyanga, Singida, Dodoma, Morogoro and Mwanza – Tanzania for Rural Livelihoods Development Company. The survey aimed at identifying a media channel through which business information could be collected and disseminated to the small producers in a commercially sustainable manner.
- Operational Auditor and Impact Assessment contractor for the Ministry of Industrialization / World Bank Micro, Small and Medium Enterprise (MSME) competitiveness Project in Kenya – a 3 year contract.
- Enabling Environment for Cooperatives Research. A research undertaken in Kenya, Tanzania, Botswana, Ethiopia, Swaziland and Malawi. The research sought to find out contribution and relevance of cooperatives to income poverty alleviation, employment and policy in Africa.
Value Chain Development and Management
- Sub-contractor alongside Deloitte and ACDI-VOCA for the USAID funded 6 year Kenya BDS Programme which pioneered activities to test the sub-sector based approach to BDS market development between 2002 and 2008.
- Value chain assessment (Bee-keeping Sub-sector) for Honey Care Africa (Tanzania) Limited in Manyoni, Mpanda, Same, Handeni, Kahama districts and Pemba Island.
Project design, management and implementation
- Developed a commercially sustainable ICT led interactive media framework that targets and responds to business and market access issues of smallholder farmers among Kenya’s rural farming communities. The programme branded “Mali Shambani” attracts a weekly listenership of over 1 million listeners is implemented by Kenya Broadcasting Corporation. Due to the success of the programme, 4 vernacular stations have been incorporated in FIT’s activities and have commenced broadcasts.
- Built capacity of Africa Women in Agri Business (AWAN) to enhance trade and market development, improve quality standards, strengthen institutional capacity, lobby and advocate for law reforms and to provide information and networking opportunities to members. The project was funded by USAID.
Strategy and Organisational development
- Developed the National Tea Promotion strategy for both local and international markets
- Developed the strategic plan for Fresh Produce Exporters Association of Kenya
- Developed the Strategic plan for East, Central and Southern Africa Horticultural Council.
Training and Technical Assistance Programmes
- Developed materials and undertook a 3 week Training of Trainers course for the cut flower industry in Ethiopia with support from Friedrich Ebert Foundation
- Facilitated development of Financial Management manuals for the World Bank supported Kenya Agricultural Productivity Programme.