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THE EFFECT OF MICROFINANCE INSTITUTIONS ON GROWTH OF WOMEN OWNED ENTERPRISES: A CASE STUDY OF KENYA WOMEN FINANCE TRUST IN KIKUYU TOWNSHIP


Beatrice Muteru

Masters Student, Jomo Kenyatta University of Science and Technology


ABSTRACT

The active participation and involvement of women in the growth of the economy and creation of employment opportunities in the small and medium enterprises sector has benefited significantly from financial support from different sources, one of which is the MFIs.  This study sought to identify the effect of MFIS on growth of women owned enterprises in the SME sector who have benefited from credit facilities provided by the Kenya Women Finance Trust in Kikuyu Township. The study used a Descriptive research design to investigate the subjects by observing and describing their behavior without influencing them in any way. The study used stratified sampling to obtain the sample size of 162 respondents. Both quantitative and qualitative data was collected during the study by use of questionnaires and an interview guide. Data processing and analysis was done using spreadsheets and the findings presented descriptively in form of tables of frequency, graphs and charts.  The responses represented 88% of the sample. As a result of the MFI credit facilities, the women SME entrepreneurs had managed to purchase additional equipment for their businesses as well as employ more staff and expand their activities. This study concludes that the MFIs credit facilities are a significant component of the women SME entrepreneurs’ activities and are critical both at the start-up point as well as in later growth and expansion of the MFI.  The study recommends that women entrepreneurs in SMEs should receive training in financial and business management skills and that there is need to also ensure that the small loans available to SME entrepreneurs are provided at competitive costs. This study concludes that the MFIs credit facilities are a significant component of the women SME entrepreneurs’ activities and are critical both at the start-up point as well as in later growth and expansion of the MFI.


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