Kenyan small and medium enterprises (SMEs) can now access free website and online profile creation services from IT giant Google in a move designed to increase their visibility to potential customers across the globe.
Google Kenya and East Africa country director Agnes Gathaiya said they had established an SME hub known as ‘Google My Business’ where SMEs will be assisted at no cost to create the profiles and websites.
Ms Gathaiya spoke when she launched a Sh325 million programme dubbed ‘Rising Together’ that will see Google support SMEs, boost women led businesses and also facilitate online learning for schools at all levels.
“ They will be visible across the globe enabling shoppers to find them as well as linking them to customers looking for their products,” she said.
She added that the service also has a market finder facility enabling linkages between the SMEs and customers from anywhere in the world.
The SME hub, will provide businesses with real-time information necessary for them to execute cross-border(regional) trades, helping them export products across the world.
“Logistics, taxes as well as market networks are key in today’s business environment. The SMEs, who have also been suffering from disrupted supply chains due to the Covid-19 pandemic can now also search with ease for genuine suppliers of raw materials,” she said.
Google also announced launch of a Sh125 million grant to 500 women via a partnership with GiveDirectly, a non-governmental relief agency where there will be a Sh6,500 stipend for six months to each beneficiary culminating in a ShSh125,000 non-refundable grant to scale up their businesses.