Friday, December 1, 2023

Top 10 institutions that offer business funding in Kenya

Business funding in Kenya: Do you want to start a business but have no clue where to find to find capital for the business? These organizations are aimed at helping startup entrepreneurs get funding for their business.

Business funding in Kenya

1. Angel Networks

Angel Networks are financiers who will first have to believe in your business idea as a viable one. They’ll then provide funding, training and be part of the day to day business activities to ensure the startup grows. So far Invested Capital remains the well-known angel network for startups.

2. Crowd sourcing

This is where you get several lenders at one place who will first have to be convinced by the viability of your startup business. The most popular crowd-sourcing platforms are Zidisha and Kiva. Others include Cheetah fund, Wakibi, Kickstarter, Indiegogo, Appbackr, Quirky AfricInvest, Agrivie Fund, Invested Capital, Leapfrog, Eva Fund, Fasini, Enabilis and Crowd funder.

The most profitable businesses to start in Kenya (Updated)

3. Micro Leaders

There are hundreds of micro-finance institutions in Kenya both credit only and deposit taking. Micro lenders have a good history of uplifting start-ups compared to commercial banks in Kenya.Visit any and give them your startup idea. Some examples include:U&I microfinance, Faulu,Imarika,Century, Uwezo,Youth Fund, Women Enterprise fund, Zawadisha, Sumac, Letshego kenya, Opportunity kenya, ECLOF kenya, Milango microfinance, Musoni MFI, Bimas MFI, Plan international,Yehu microfinance, Riverbank,Ufanisi-AFR, Rupia MFI, Kopo kopo, Unaitas, Juhudi kilimo MFI, Window MFI, Craft Silicon, Planet Rating, Taifa MFI and Greenland Fedha.

4. Youth Enterprise Development fund

This is arguably the most renowned of our government’s initiatives. Sadly this is because it has been tainted by scandals. That notwithstanding, it’s a core part of realizing Vision 2030. The Youth Fund was established in 2006 with the aim of availing opportunities to Kenyan youths. The government eyes fostering entrepreneurship as a tool in dealing with youth unemployment. The fund is open to those aged between 18-35 years old.

5. Uwezo Fund

Mirroring the Youth Fund is Uwezo Fund. Only that it has a much wider scope. It is an empowerment program, created in 2013, hoped to benefit women, youth and persons with disability. It offers capital and mentor-ship to entrepreneurs with the primary aims of achieving gender equality and eradicating poverty. Its loans range from sh.50,000-500,000 at a time.

6. Women Enterprise Fund

This initiative is tied to the Ministry of Gender. From the name it is evident who it targets. Women Enterprise Fund not only offers credit to women entrepreneurs but also markets goods and services produced by them. Keeping in line with the social motivation of these government funds; it aims to make women financially stable.


The Industrial and Commercial Development Corporation(ICDC) is a 60 year old soul. Nevertheless, it still plays an important role in our Vision 2030 quest. It avails funding for Kenyan entrepreneurs through medium and long term financing. The main task of ICDC is to prop up industrial development in Kenya. A key but poorly sold sector to the public. ICDC offers venture capital, joint-ventures, commercial loans and asset financing.

8. Kenya Industrial Estate

Like ICDC, KIE is joined to the Ministry of Industrialization at the hip. The Kenyan Government is aware that industrialization is the key to reaching developed status. It is little wonder then that KIE is driven to indigenize industry in Kenya. It provides industrial sheds, subsidizes credit and improves entrepreneurial skills of small to medium size enterprises. KIE offers Jua Kali sector loans of between sh.100, 000-500,000 and to medium enterprises it offers up to 14 million shillings.

9. Industrial Development Fund

Industry is a capital heavy venture thus excuse the government’s many Development Finance Institutions. Industrial development fund has been in existence for a long time just like its sister institutes. Established in 1973, it offers secured loans for medium and large industrial enterprises. The loans come in typical variety; be it project and asset financing or even hire purchase. IDB will assist you establish or expand your business so go for it.

10. Agriculture Finance Corporation

It’s logical to have an agriculture specific fund. After all, agriculture is still the backbone of our lauded diversified economy. AFC was initially set up to enable transfer of land to Kenyan farmers in post-independence Kenya. Today it offers credit to the agricultural entrepreneurs among us.

11. Venture Capitalists

These are financiers who will listen to your start-up business idea and evaluate its viability. If they are fully convinced by your idea, they’ll provide the funding and be part of the ownership (a percentage of your business will belong to the venture capitalist) but will never be involved in the day to day activities of the business. Examples of venture capitalists in Kenya include among others; Nairobi Garage, Seed Capital Investment, Savannah Fund, Westpac, Growth hub, Grofin, Monsanto Fund and Jacana.

12. Financial foundations

Sometimes foundations can give funding to startup businesses in form of interest free loans, grants or prizes. Some foundations have known dates when they give out loans, grants or hold competitions while others don’t have. You must be on the look always never to miss any announced dates set for competitions. Ongoing now is the. Examples of other foundations include ;Safaricom foundation, Chandaria foundation, Citi foundation, MasterCard foundation, Coca-cola foundation, Aga Khan foundation, Ford foundation, The Tony Elumelu, Micro loan, Virgin unite and African Leadership foundation.

Connect With Us


Latest Stories

Related Stories