In the year 2020, organizations were presented either with the opportunity for growth or one of exploration into new paths to keep them afloat during the pandemic season.
Pre-pandemic, Precious Connections worked heavily with big corporations in the areas of Branding, Marketing, Public Relations among others. But as the year progressed they looked into new ways to also work with small businesses to ensure they as well survive the pandemic tides.
Precious Connections did this through the introduction of their Quantum Leap Program (QLP) aimed at assisting small businesses easily maintain their operations during and after the pandemic season.
In this month’s Spotlight we speak with Ms. Sabrina Ejore, founder of Precious Connections Limited. She shares with us how her organization turned to helping and empowering SMEs, a move that was highly triggered by the pandemic.
“Precious Connections is a multi-faceted organization that was founded as a partnership in 2013 and incorporated in 2017 under the companies act in the republic of Kenya. The organization is paced through youth energy concentrated around strategies engineered by experienced professionals from diversified areas of expertise,” explains Sabrina Ejore.
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The organization works alongside executives and owners of companies to help them define their goals, polish their vision for their business, and set-in place a series of strategies that will help the owner achieve their goals and vision.
Precious Connections achieves this through a holistic approach, by overseeing work in strategies, Business Models or Structures, Marketing, operations, wellness programs (Health & Wealth Management) Innovation, PR -branding and Financial Analytics. In short, Precious Connections works as a one-stop-shop for any organization seeking to outsource any business functions.
“We help entrepreneurs, business owners, and professionals grow in a variety of ways by working on a fixed schedule to share actionable feedback, personalized advice, and growth plans for clients to increase organizational revenue, accelerate their career, or increase business growth,” Sabrina shared.
One major area that the organization had its focus on was on international business and trade. Precious Connections Ltd had been able to maintain the most comprehensive and robust database of global trade, government regulations, and international business rules available.
Working closely with Kenya National Chamber of Commerce and Industry (KNCCI), Precious Connections had managed to maintain successful import and export business relationships globally.
The organization’s diplomacy and ability to buy and sell had been progressing over the years. They invested and participated in International Trade fairs.
This enabled them to create solid contacts and strong relationships with reliable suppliers by forming strategic partnerships and becoming manufacturers’ representatives in the East African Market.
Trading globally had given Precious Connections Ltd the opportunity to be exposed to new markets of various products and services.
“We also consulted for clients on the imports and exports procedures and opportunities and helped engage them with the best freight forwarders in the market with the clearing process and procedures,” explained Sabrina.
However, in 2020, when borders were closed and there was not much that could be achieved across the borders, Sabrina explained that, at the height of pandemic, she knew she had to think and explore a different niche.
A niche that contributes so much to the economy, yet most people forget about these groups of entrepreneurs.
With this in mind, Sabrina and her team shifted their focus from the large corporates and sought to also incorporate outsourcing packages that would favor SMEs in their journey.
In September 2020, Precious Connections in partnership with the Kenya National Chamber of Commerce and Industry, (KNCCI), launched the Quantum Leap Program (QLP), a business coaching program that aimed to support small and medium size businesses.
Seeking to unlock opportunities for women, youth, and people with disabilities, PWDs led businesses, the program helps address inequalities in the small enterprises sector.
Through the QLP program, SMEs will be able to access business opportunities through networking, growth through access to funding partners and become sustainable to create more jobs and incomes for employees and contribute to economic growth.
The 2-year program was piloted in Nairobi and is expected to expand into other counties. In Kenya micro, small and medium-led enterprises account for most businesses, providing employment opportunities to 14.9 Million Kenyans.
According to the Central Bank of Kenya, 75% of SMEs in Kenya were facing closure by end of June 2020 yet MSMEs in Kenya contribute approximately 40 percent of the GDP, with the majority falling in the informal sector.
Gender and minority group dynamics are factors that contribute to failure of SMEs to take up available business opportunities and resources. The QLP program will fill the gaps of knowledge and identification of such opportunities by adopting an SME-specific approach to address inequalities in the small enterprises sector.
With most small and medium sized entrepreneurs lacking the knowledge on how or where to seek guidance in growing their businesses, the QLP Program will seek to help engage, equip, connect, sensitize and impact businesses to scale and reach their full potential.
“The main objective of Precious Connections Ltd is to mentor, consult, coach, empower and educate Youth and Women on problems faced by SMEs and how to overcome them to enable them become successful entrepreneurs,” explained Sabrina.
The Program achieves this in four ways which include by:
“The QLP Partnership Drive involves various stakeholders, mainly our partners who have come together to support entrepreneurs in the SMEs space. SMEs will be able to gain better access to the market and therefore, grow their businesses, employ more people, and generate sustainable and better incomes for their employees, themselves, and their families,” says Sabrina.
She also added, “The overall purpose of the project is to contribute to improving the livelihood of Kenyan families by increasing SMEs access to economic opportunities, which in turn will benefit their own families and their employees. The participation will include all, and especially women, youth and PWDs entrepreneurs. The project represents a SMEs-specific initiative to address inequalities in the small enterprise sector. It combines gender and minority groups’ equality promotion with enterprise development,” explained Sabrina.
To date, Precious Connections has been able to train over 50 SMEs through the QLP training. The trainings are held every fortnight at Pine Tree Plaza on Kaburu Road off Ngong & Kindaruma Roads. Sign up today and reap the benefits that come for taking a quantum leap.