Enterprise

KQ hub to help SMEs scale new heights

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Kenya Airways chief executive Allan Kilavuka. FILE PHOTO | NMG

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Summary

  • Startups will get an opportunity to work with Kenya Airways in advancing their ideas after the national carrier launched an innovation centre.
  • The Fahari Innovation Hub will act as a springboard for new ideas and data-driven innovations to accelerate impact-driven solutions that address some of the societal and business challenges.
  • KQ said this is part of its strategy in contributing to the sustainable development of Africa by empowering, partnering, and co-creating innovative ideas with local start-ups and the small-medium enterprises (SMEs) ecosystem.

Startups will get an opportunity to work with Kenya Airways in advancing their ideas after the national carrier launched an innovation centre.

The Fahari Innovation Hub will act as a springboard for new ideas and data-driven innovations to accelerate impact-driven solutions that address some of the societal and business challenges.

KQ said this is part of its strategy in contributing to the sustainable development of Africa by empowering, partnering, and co-creating innovative ideas with local start-ups and the small-medium enterprises (SMEs) ecosystem.

The hub will offer the startups with the opportunities along the aviation value chain, which includes airports, food industry and tourism.

The enterprises will work with firms and agencies such as Boeing Horizon X, Kenya Tourism Board, NAS Airport Services, General Electric, Hivos East Africa, and Funkidz Limited.

Speaking during the launch, Cabinet Secretary Ministry of ICT, Innovation and Youth Affairs Joe Mucheru said there is need to invent new ways for the future and especially for the youth to be able “to respond as flexibly as possible to changing times and diverse opportunities”.

“We commend Kenya Airways for partnering with National Youth Council and GE in leveraging and harnessing youth potential to design the Fahari Innovation Hub in fast-tracking the country’s mission to use digital and environmental-friendly business models,” said Mr Mucheru.

“Through the hub we hope to see provision of upskilling, employment opportunities, community growth as well as support to local universities, enterprises and SMEs as we contribute to the sustainable development of Africa.”

Kenya Airways Chief Executive Officer, Allan Kilavuka said with the global pandemic, KQ has become increasingly aware of the need to be innovative as it positions the business as a resilient, forward-looking and sustainable company with a deliberate inclusive agenda of empowering, partnering and co-creating with the society.

“Enabling an environment that will accelerate innovative ideas, knowledge exchange and impact business operations brought together various think-tanks, industry leaders, innovators and entrepreneurs exemplifies our spirit to charge forward as we seek to innovatively find solutions that address some of our business problems and pain points,” said Mr Kilavuka.