Garden City Mall to Expand Under UK Based Property Manager

 

By Jacquiline Wahu

Knight Frank Kenya has won the contract as the new property manager of Garden City Mall after a previous agreement with a South African based Broll came to an end.

The real estate consultancy with its headquarters in London signed a pact to be in charge of the mall effective from March, with Actis the developer.

This Development property which intends to expand by building a business park, is Nairobi’s first fully-fledged mixed-use development with retail, residential and office space, all planned on 47 acres of land adds to 11 other malls being managed by Knight Frank Kenya.

Other malls under their management in Nairobi include; T-Mall, Ridgeways Mall, Capital Centre, The Junction Mall, Rosslyn Riviera Mall, Lunga Lunga Square, Signature Mall and Diamond Plaza II. They also manage other malls in other counties.

“As Kenya’s first mixed-use development, Garden City has premium retail and office space available for lease and residential units for sale or lease, so Knight Frank has just the management and marketing expertise that we are looking for. We are excited to have Knight Frank Kenya coming on board to join the Garden City team and are looking forward to a busy year ahead,” said Garden City Development, Chris Coulson.

The real estate consultancy prides itself in the experience of managing other major shopping joints across the country through leasing and management for the past two decades. Over the period it has brought on board major international retail brands into the Kenyan market, latest being Shoprite which is projected to take up the anchor’s space in the Mall by August 2018.

To express their excitement, the managing director Ben Woodhams said that the deal is a key milestone for Knight Frank Kenya as they celebrate their 20th anniversary. “This It brings our long-standing relationship with Actis full cycle as we were the lead letting agents for the mall and have worked on other developments together since early 2000s.” He added.

Knight Frank is also the letting agent for the business park and sales agent for residential at Garden City.

The first phase of the business park will have 125,000 sq ft—60% of which is already leased, while two subsequent office blocks will deliver a further 125,000 sq ft. Garden City residential currently has 215 units of townhouses and apartments, with a further 400 units planned. Future plans in the development include a hotel, medical facility and other complimentary commercial uses.

Knight Frank LLP is the leading independent global property consultancy. The Group advises clients ranging from individual owners and buyers to major developers, investors and corporate tenants.

Images Source

Source: Knight Frank

Nearly Two Decades Later Air France Returns to Kenya

By Jacquiline Wahu

Air France Boeing 787-9 maiden trip, after 18 years break, to Nairobi’s JKIA on March 26th 2018 marks a memorable day for the Kenyan skies.

The return of the French National Carrier shows the demand of access to Kenya’s Capital from other major cities in the world.

The new operations of Air France will serve three weekly flights to Nairobi from Paris-Charles de Gaulle.

By connecting France to Kenya, the company majorly targets a business clientele in the expanding economy of the Kenyan capital according to Frank Legre, Senior Vice President for Africa at Air France KLM Group.

At a press conference with the Kenyan press during the arrival of the inaugural flight, Frank highlighted that close to 80 French companies are currently based in Nairobi, a figure that is continually rising by the day.

This comes after a signed partnership with two other airlines including KLM Royal Dutch Airlines and Kenya Airways. This joint venture will enable travelers reserve flights operated on a code-share basis by one of the three airlines on round-trip services between Paris-Nairobi and Amsterdam-Nairobi offering 24 daily flights on the route.

The KLM General Manager East African, Arthur Dieffenthaler expressed the group’s excitement to be back and promised to offer the best of their products to Kenya and East African region.

Being a founding member of the Skyteam global airline alliance and a subsidiary of the Air France–KLM Group, the French Carrier adds to the key international airlines that have resumed flights to Kenya in the past years indicating increased travelers demand.

Coincidentally, two years ago German’s Lufthansa resumed its direct passenger flights to Nairobi after 18 years.

Last year, TUI Netherlands was yet another airline to make a comeback after 3 years suspension of its operations to Kenya. The Dutch-based Airline returned to book travelers three weekly KLM flights for a tourist’s package.

African Treaty on Continental Free Trade Area (CFTA) Launched

By Jacquiline Wahu

African Heads of States have convened in Kigali, Rwanda to sign the treaty on the Continental Free Trade Area (CFTA), one of Flagship Projects of African Union (AU) which will bring together trading amongst 55 member countries.

Kenya’s President, H.E Uhuru Kenyatta joined other African Leaders today as they deepen the economic integration process which will allow Africans to trade freely across the continent.

Formerly chairing African Peer Review Mechanism (APRM), President Uhuru has played a key role in the realization of this agreement.

Additionally, in support of integration, he allowed all Africans to get visa on arrival in Kenya from year 2017, not based on reciprocity, and urged other countries to do the same as he believes that it is the foundation of Pan-Africanism.

The tariff-free-trade targets a market of 1.2 billion people and hoped to increase trade within Africa to foster growth of the economies of member countries.

The Treaty shall not only permit free movement of business persons but also right of residence and establishment in the said countries.

Estimations by UN Economic Commission for Africa (UNECA) shows that the treaty’s enactment could rise intra-African trade by 52%p by 2022, compared with trade levels in 2010.

President Kagame of Rwanda, also current Chairman of AU, clarified that increased internal African trade is not meant to nullify business with the rest of the world.

Why CFTA?

According to AU, the Agreement aims at creating a single continental market for goods and services, with free movement of business persons and investments, therefore paving way for accelerating the establishment of the Continental Customs Union and the African customs union.

By so doing, it will expand the intra African trade through better harmonization and coordination of trade liberalization and facilitation regimes and instruments across Africa in general.

This will help resolve the challenges of multiple and overlapping memberships and expedite the regional and continental integration processes.

Finally, it will enhance competitiveness at the industry and enterprise level through exploiting opportunities for scale production, continental market access and better reallocation of resources.

Challenges

Even with all the benefits, not all have welcomed the pact  with open arms. Some members seen to be reluctant include Nigeria’s Labour congress who warned their president against the deal, consequently, president Muhammadu Buhari did not attend the Signing event to ‘allow time for further consultations’.

President Yoweri Museveni of Uganda was also absent after cancelling his trip the last minute though reasons as to why are unclear.

Other concerns are that the benefits might not be spread out evenly but favour just a few members. This is therefore expected to draw attention of the bigger economies against the smaller ones.

CFTA is expected to come into force after its ratification today.

A second phase of negotiations will be held later to cover investment, competition policy and intellectual property.

CFTA shall be the second largest market after World Trade Organization which was founded in 1995 and currently has 164 member states.

Floods Hit Nairobi Hard

By Jacquiline Wahu

A heavy downpour has left Kenya’s capital in a virtual standstill shaming both county and national governments for not improving the city’s drainage as the situation is not new but happens every other time there are heavy rains.

P.C: Anonymous

Even with an alert from Kenya Meteorological Department, the Central Business District (CBD) was adversely affected with ‘rivers’ running along the avenues, streets and lanes with Haile Selassie and Moi avenues, Ronald Ngala, Tom Mboya and Kimathi Street being barely passable.

Some businesses felt the heavy impact of the floods beginning from the matatu (PSV) industry as they got stuck and handed over passengers to boda boda (motor cycle) riders. The flow of people getting to town was also distressed, rendering business few or no customers compared to normal days.

P.C: Anonymous

City’s workforce was caught up unaware on their way to work where pedestrians had to get to the office in wet shoes and clothes as there were no dry spots along their routes. For some, the roads were blocked by the floods and had to wait by the roadside or bus stop until the waters subside.

Being digital savvy, the dwellers took to social media where they shared amateur photos and short videos of their locality and experience as they headed to their respective occupation.

On their posts, they beseeched the local government to fix the hub’s drainage system.

Nairobians must also play their part by not littering the city as it is the major cause of drainage clogging.

The weatherman had warned the country last week to expect heavy rains that may cause floods in various parts of the country including Kakamega, Nakuru Kericho, Kwale, Migori, Kajiado, Bomet, Kisii, and Narok.

Other parts of the country are experiencing the effects of the heavy rains interrupting normal businesses. For instance the case of Mai Mahiu road that split and left a huge gulley and motorists had to turn back from both sides and look for alternative routes causing a huge snarl up.

UK Bids Farewell to H.E. Lazurus Amayo

By Jacquiline Wahu

The Kenya Society answered an invitation to the House of Commons by Hon. Jeremy Lefroy yesterday in a session that bid farewell to the outgoing Kenyan High Commissioner, H.E Lazarus Amayo.

 

In his speech, the Chairman of All Party Parliamentary Group on Kenya & the Member of Parliament for Stafford said that Kenya and UK must work together in job a livelihood creation. He added that efforts are underway to ensure job creation around the world which will be the main agenda in Washington conference in April.

Despite acknowledging challenges faced, H.E. Amayo boasted of the infrastructural development projects that the government of Kenya has implemented. He highlighted the construction of Eastern and Southern bypasses that have eased traffic jam, making it faster to get to the airport.

In response to a comment on brain drain, the outgoing envoy clarified that, except for a few Kenyans who get jobs in the UK and probably required by their institutions to remain there, majority of Kenyans after studying abroad go back to Kenya to work.

In other remarks, he will remain in his official capacity and looks forward to the Commonwealth Heads of Government Conference in April 2018.

H.E. Lazarus Amayo was reassigned to the Permanent Mission of the United Nations in New York earlier this year by the President of the Republic of Kenya.

Photos by: KEN Face of Kenya Connect

Celebrating Women in Business

By Jacquiline Wahu

The International Women’s Day was feted a day earlier in Kenya as women entrepreneurs convened at a conference in Nairobi organized by Kenya National Chamber of Commerce and Industry (KNCCI) under its Women in Business sector.

 

The event was graced by H.E. Governor Ann Waiguru who is not only among the only three women governors elected to the office, but also the first female deputy chairperson of Council of Governors. In her speech, she urged the government and Kenyans at large to support women initiative in business, politics or any other venture they uptake.

Emphasizing on transforming women lives through rural and urban activists, the governor shared her initiatives during the few months in office that have kicked off to support women in her county under the umbrella initiative dubbed Wezesha Mama Program. Through this program, women access procurement opportunities to avail products from their craftsmanship.

While she encouraged business between counties, Ms Waiguru enlightened the women on the importance of properly branding their enterprises to attract in investors. This coincided with the launch of Women in Business Magazine which is a great platform for women to advertise their enterprises to a potential audience as well share their struggles and success stories.

A call to action was made by the Deputy Chair CoG to deliberately bring solutions and fresh ideas that will empower women. Being a champion in fighting for women empowerment, Ann Waiguru is notable for rolling out Huduma Centres in Kenya while she was the Devolution CS which has simplified access to documentation required by entrepreneurs especially while starting a business among other services.

“Let us strive to be the best we can as the world is looking up to us.” She called upon women in her closing remarks.

Devolution Cabinet Secretary, Eugene Wamalwa was among the few supportive men who attended the event. Together with Governor Waiguru, he played a significant role in ensuring 30% of Access to Government Procurement Opportunity was reserved for women.

The CS applauded women for fighting for everything they have got as he acknowledged that they deserve all the opportunities at their disposal and more. He also extended an olive branch to the vice chair CoG to work together in ensuring that women are empowered across the 47 counties.

KNCCI Chairperson, Mary Muthoni confirmed the chambers solidarity with the President of Kenya so that together they can bring out successful sisters in industries like manufacturing, construction, food security among others. She encouraged women to pride in their projects to inspire more women to start their own enterprises.

Women were unanimously encouraged to tap into the manufacturing industry to avail locally made products and even produce enough for export.

The women who had converged to celebrate International Women’s Day own enterprises in various fields including real estates, tours and travel, security, manufacturing, construction, logistics companies and agri-business just to mention a few.

 

54th Jamuhuri Day Celebration in the UK .

Updated : The official Kenyan High Commission Press Release :

The High Commissioner of Kenya to the United Kingdom H.E. Lazarus Amayo, today, 12 December 2017 led Kenyans in the UK and friends of Kenya in celebrating the 54th Jamhuri Day Anniversary in London.  The well-attended lunch hour function was graced by Hon. Rory Stewart OBE MP, Minister of State for International Development and Minister of State for Africa at the Foreign & Commonwealth Office who is also the Member of Parliament for Penrith and The Border as the chief guest. The principal guests were Hon. Jeremy Lefroy, Chairman of All Party Parliamentary Group on Kenya & the Member of Parliament for Stafford and Lord David Chidgey, Chairman of All Party Parliamentary Group on Africa. It was also attended by Honourable Members of Parliament from the House of Commons and the House of Lords, senior officials of Her Majesty’s Government, High Commissioners and Ambassadors, Heads of International Organisations, Corporate Chief Executives and the Kenyan Diaspora among others.

While addressing the more than 400 participants, the Chief Guest Hon. Rory Stewart congratulated the Government of Kenya led by His Excellency President Uhuru Kenyatta for showing respect to constitutionalism and the rule of law during the just concluded general elections noting that Kenya had exhibited mature and vibrant democracy. He congratulated Kenyans on the occasion of the independence anniversary and thanked the Government of Kenya and its people for the precious, strong and intimate relationship that Kenya and the UK have been able to develop over the last 54 years and hoped that the next half century will be more successful.  The Hon Minister further stated that the United Kingdom will continue partnering with Kenya in implementing its development agenda and for regional peace and stability.

Lord David Chidgey congratulated Kenyans and friends of Kenya noting that a lot has changed since1963 both in Kenya and the United Kingdom.  He reiterated that it is time Africa and indeed Kenya’s voice is heard again. He stated that even though Kenya has had a challenging year, there is so much promise, talent and a lot to admire in Kenya today. “Just like Britain, Kenyans are best placed to achieve their goals by their own efforts and should not allow politics to let them down,” he said. He lauded the connections that Kenya and the UK have through the Commonwealth Community and called for the two countries to play a full role during the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting (CHOGM) in April 2018 in order to achieve the desired objectives.

While addressing the gathering, the Hon. Jeremy Lefroy said that Kenya has huge potential noting that the country is now Africa’s leading exporter of tea, coffee, and other products. Further, he stated that Kenya and the UK have a lot in common in values which the All Party Parliamentary Group on Kenya would like to build on. He noted that the Parliamentary Group will pursue, in addition to traditional areas, more collaboration in Agriculture, Manufacturing, Science, and research among other fields. He further congratulated Kenyans and wished them a very happy independence day and a prosperous 2018.

In his address, the High Commissioner Mr. Lazarus Amayo welcomed the guests and took the opportunity to explain the significance of twelfth December in Kenya’s national calendar as it is the day when the country gained its independence in 1963 and become a Republic a year later on the same day in 1964. He added that the country has now made tremendous progress especially in the Economic, Social and Political pillars of its development agenda.

Amb. Amayo reiterated that the Government of Kenya is committed to continue implementing policies that will further transform Kenya into a newly industrializing, upper middle-income country providing a high quality of life to all its citizens in a clean and secure environment. Kenya attained the lower middle-income country status in September 2014 after re-basing.

He noted that in line with its democratic practice, Kenya holds its elections every five years and this year’s General elections were conducted in August where H.E. President Uhuru Kenyatta was declared the winner. He added that the results were contested and the Supreme Court on 1st September 2017 nullified them and directed a repeat of the Presidential election which was subsequently held on 26th October 2017.

“President Kenyatta was again declared the winner in the repeat poll and was subsequently sworn in last week on 28th November 2017. This is a testimony of the commitment of the Government and the people of Kenya to constitutionalism, the rule of law, separation of powers,  respect for independent institutions and human life as well as democratic resilience” he added. He further called upon Kenyans to work for country stability, prosperity, its unity and for citizens to continue living in peace and harmony especially after the last general elections.

The High Commissioner also highlighted the declaration by the Head of State during his inauguration speech in which he stated that Kenya is a proud member of the community of nations, and will always endeavor to remain a force for good. He added that in recognition of free movement of people as the cornerstone of Pan-African brotherhood and fraternity that H.E President Uhuru Kenyatta directed that any African wishing to visit Kenya will be eligible to receive a visa at the port of entry without attaching it on reciprocity. “Already Kenya has this provision of Visa on arrival with many of its development partners including the United Kingdom. It is worth noting that with respect to  our commitment to East Africa Community and regional integration, the President directed that citizens from EAC member states who are currently Visa exempt would only need an identity card to work, do business, and settle in Kenya ” he added.

The Head of Mission also stated that Kenya’s trade, investment and economic relations with the UK continue to grow from strength to strength, the UK being not only a significant development partner but also the largest foreign investor in Kenya from Europe and the largest source of tourist arrivals. He added that Kenya is keen to increase the volume and value of trade and equally diversify its exports to the UK.

The High Commissioner thanked the co-sponsors of this year’s reception; the Kenya Society, the World Remit and the Equity Bank, for their support that contributed positively to the success of the event.  He gave special thanks to the Chief Guest Hon Stewart and Principal Guests Lord Chidgey and Hon. Lefroy for accepting to grace the celebrations. He also thanked the Foreign and Commonwealth Office, in particular, the Africa Directorate, several Ministries in the UK Government, the business community, various universities, the civil society organizations, the Diasporas and staff at the High Commission for supporting the High Commission execute its mandate.

Souce :http://kenyahighcom.org.uk/kenyans-in-the-united-kingdom-celebrate-the-54th-jamhuri-day-in-london/

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Jim Nyamu to Walk from London to Bristol United Kingdom.

Jim is no ordinary Kenyan . According to Wikipedia : Jim Nyamu (middle name: Justus), of Nairobi, Kenya, is an elephant research scientist and activist against poaching and trade in ivory. Nyamu is executive director at the Elephant Neighbors Center (ENC) and is leader of the movement, Ivory Belongs to Elephants. He has also held positions at the African Conservation Centre and Kenya Wildlife Service. The ENC is a grass-roots collaborative and participatory research organization focused on enhancing the capacity of communities living with wildlife to promote interlinkages between species and their habitats.[1]

Nyamu walks in support of elephants, and has garnered local, national, and international media coverage.[2][3][4]

In September and October 2013, he walked 560 miles—from Boston, MA, to Washington, DC—culminating on 4 October in the Washington, DC, portion of an International March for Elephants, a worldwide event organized by the David Sheldrick Wildlife Trust (DSWT). The DSWT sponsored marches in 15 cities, ranging from London to Cape Town to Bangkok. Independently, sympathetic groups marched in about 25 other cities around the world.[2][3]

Jim Nyamu (center) was a featured speaker at the Washington, DC, International March for Elephants, held in many cities around the world. He had just finished a 560-mile walk from Boston, MA, which took him a month.

In February 2013, Nyamu walked from Mombasa to Nairobi (311 miles) and, during the months of May and June 2013, he walked from Maasai Mara to Nairobi (1,063 miles).[5] After his U.S. trek, he planned to head back to Africa to walk another 1,550 miles, from Uganda to Tanzania, ending up in Amboseli, Kenya.[2][6] One report indicates that he plans to walk another 5,000 kilometers (3,107 miles). He is quoted as saying “I will only stop when the world appreciates the fact that ivory belongs to elephants.”[7]

Nyamu attended the ivory crush, mandated by the Obama administration, on 14 November 2013 where 6 tons of ivory were destroyed in Denver, Colorado.[8][9] As part of the 2015 Global March for Elephants and Rhinos, held around the world 3 and 4 October,[10] 11-year-old Maddie Jabs organized a walk in her hometown of Saugerties, NY.[11] Jabs was inspired by meeting Nyamu during his 2013 walk from Boston, MA, to Washington, DC; she reportedly met up with Nyamu in New York City and walked three miles with him. According to a 30 October 2015, post in the website Coastweek.com, Nyamu and Kenya’s “anti-poaching protest team” completed a 260-km (162 miles) walk, which took 11 days and covered major towns around the Maasai Mara Game Reserve in southwest Kenya.[12] Nyamu’s walks were described in Modern Africa Guy 3 April 2016.[13] The article described Nyamu’s many conversations along his walks, the dangers he faces from those involved in the ivory trade, and current price ranges for ivory, which continue to drive the trade and endanger elephants.

His Latest Walk is aimed to engage the conversation in the UK with a 300 Mile walk across the South West of England Setting of From London. Jim set off with a Press statement From the High Commission office on the 30/11/2017 with a Two mile Set off Parade accompanied by H.E Lazrus Amayo the High Commisioner in the United Kingdom.

The Set off was at The Natural History Museum was fitting . The Natural History Museum The Natural History Museum is uniquely placed to share world-leading conservation expertise. Our collection comprises 80 million specimens, and our conservation work across the world .

Kenyans braced the rain to offer Moral support to Jim and his support team away from the Elephant Jungle to a more vibrant and cosmopolitan London .

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IMG_0416We would Like to urge all well wishers who have started having this very engaging Conversation to support Jim and his Charity to ensure the Elephant story remains relevant over Many generations to come .

 

 

President Uhuru Kenyatta sworn in for second term as Kenya’s president .

DSC_4435_preview DSC_4432_preview DSC_4428_preview DSC_4361_preview DSC_4330_preview DSC_4288_preview DSC_4282_preview DSC_4240_preview DSC_4209_preview DSC_4208_preview DSC_4197_preview DSC_4195_preview DSC_4193_preview DSC_4191_preview DSC_4503_preview DSC_4394_previewKenyans from across the Nation braved the cold to witness the swearing In of Present Kenyatta into his Second Term.

“I … do swear … that I will always truly and diligently serve the people of the Republic of Kenya,” Kenyatta said with his hand on a Bible that had been used to swear in his father, founding president Jomo Kenyatta, at independence in 1963.

Kenyatta said the past few months “have been a trying time”, and he called for an end to hate and divisiveness.

“The elections are now firmly behind us … I will devote my time and energy to build bridges.”

He again criticised the supreme court’s nullification of his August election win, saying that “despite … being told that the processes matter more than your vote, we complied.”

President Uhuru Kenyatta has lifted restrictions on East Africans wishing to live and do business in Kenya. He says all East Africans need now is their national identification.

President Kenyatta also directed that Africans wishing to visit Kenya will be eligible to receive a visa at the port of entry.

“As a mark of our continued commitment to you, our Brothers and Sisters in the East African Community; from today, you will be treated like Kenyans. Like your Kenyan brothers and sisters, you will need only your identity card,” he said, adding that “You can now work, do business; own property, farm and if you wish, and find a willing partner, you can marry and settle in Kenya.”

Kenyatta promised to work with leaders of the East African Community to bring a renewed energy and optimism to the union.