The Big Baraza fourth edition to be held on June 27


SNDBX CEO Joram Mwinamo shakes hands with Venture Lift founder Dr Wilmot Allen after signing an agreement to enhance professional services, trade, and investment facilitation between continents. [Courtesy]

SNDBX International has announced that its flagship annual event, The Big Baraza fourth edition will happen next month.

Themed "Game Changers," the two-day conference scheduled for June 27-28 2024, will provide insights to help businesses navigate the evolving global landscape and adapt to succeed in the competitive marketplace.

Shifting the event to June to align with International MSME Day, SNDBX celebrates the vital role of small and medium enterprises in driving economies worldwide.

The Big Baraza provides a unique platform to connect with visionary entrepreneurs, explore investment opportunities, and contribute to the growth of the next big game changers in the industry.

Derived from a ‘Swahili’ word meaning to convene or to bring together a conference of great social importance aligned to the governance and well-being of the society or the village, the Big Baraza is an annual, solution-oriented, SME-focused, 2-day conference for SMEs, by SMEs that was created to address the challenges of SMEs by putting them squarely at the center of the conversation.

The conference aims to unearth and take stock of the latest business developments on sustainable finance, innovation, policy, trade opportunities, and current affairs that may translate into cost savings, revenue growth, risk management, and competitive differentiation.

Its main objectives include amplifying the voice of SMEs, enhancing engagement between the public and private sector actors across Africa and educating and inspiring SMEs through informative conversations about financing, trade, policy, and scale

While making the announcement, SNDBX International CEO Joram Mwinamo said the firm has signed strategic partnerships aimed at enhancing its professional services, trade, and investment facilitation between continents.

Mwinamo said the partnership with an American company, Venture Lift Africa (VLA) and an Ethiopian firm Icon Solutions PLC through a series of licensing agreements also aims to foster reciprocal

investment and trade, as well as enhance cooperation between Kenyan, Ethiopian, and

American experts with a focus on empowering entrepreneurs in these markets.

According to Mr Mwinamo, the partnerships with VLA and Icon are pivotal steps in the strategic roadmap for global expansion.

“These milestone license agreements to establish SNDBX beyond Kenya’s borders and set up hubs in Addis, Atlanta and Berlin, resulted from years’ worth of dedicated efforts and planning,” said Mwinamo.

The SNDBX is a village of experts that brings together a permanent residency of more than 35 professional disciplines under the same roof to work collaboratively side by side with entrepreneurs physically and virtually.

The SNDBX delivers sustainable business models localised for the African ecosystem.

Its experts are organised into five engines that serve the multifaceted needs of small enterprise businesses.

The collaboration, engagement and interaction between the experts within these engines leads to the creation of innovative products, tools and services that empower SMEs to better serve their customers and efficiently use their resources to grow sustainably.

The Engines are the means through which the SNDBX delivers value to entrepreneurs.

Mr Mwinamo said the establishment of a SNDBX office in Atlanta Georgia is the gateway to the South which leverages its strategic positioning that enables SNDBX and VLA to extend support to small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) through advisory services, facilitating reciprocal trade, and investment opportunities.

Speaking about the partnership, Dr Wilmot Allen, founder of Venture Lift said bilateral trade relations between the two economic partners have been growing, with the U.S. being one of Kenya's largest trading partners.

He referenced the 2022 Strategic Trade and Investment Partnership (STIP) established to advance economic partnerships in several commercial areas.

"President William Ruto’s state visit to the White House on May 23, 2024, is also a significant step towards fortifying Kenya-U.S relations targeting numerous opportunities for collaboration and mutual benefit,” said Allen.

Allen said Ruto’s trip has coincided with Kenyan companies opening up in the States, particularly in Atlanta, and this aligns with the upcoming opening of SNDBX Atlanta, highlighting the growing economic and business ties between the two nations.

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