ICDC eyes Sh2bn annual kitty to fund start ups

The Industrial and Commercial Development Corporation (ICDC) is banking on amendments to its act that will increase its budgetary allocation to investment in small and medium enterprises.

Amendments to the ICDC Act would see the corporation allocated up to 0.2 percent of revenues collected each financial year.

ICDC chairman Francis Kimemia said with the higher allocation, ICDC could invest Sh2 billion annually to create strategic industries countrywide, reduce rate of unemployment among youth and boost the economy.

“We are looking at a more restructured ICDC that focuses on projects supporting growth of youth and catalyzing development within the counties. Once the bill is passed, it will bring Sh2 billion per year into our business portfolio,” Mr Kimemia said.

The state agency was recently reclassified from grade C to A in state corporations’ status, on its ability to generate money.

The new ranking allows ICDC to attract and retain the talent required to enhance its effectiveness in the implementation of industrial projects.

ICDC recently lowered its interest rates to 13 percent, making the parastatal much cheap than commercial banks.

The Corporation has so far disbursed Sh625 million to support small businesses across the country with another Sh369 million approved and waiting disbursement.

ICDC acting Executive Director Kennedy Wanderi said the corporation will hit its investments target of Sh1.2 billion in the current financial year.

“We are going to achieve this if we maintain the momentum and our business focus,” Mr Wanderi said.

The Corporation is also on course to achieving its profit target for the year having realized Sh200 million in revenues between July and September.

ICDC is a state owned development finance and investment company with investments in a wide array of sectors.

The corporation has a stake in Centum Investments, AON Minet, KENTACO as well as Uchumi.

Besides investing the firm processes business loans to qualifying companies without assuming equity positions in the borrowing entities.

ICDC recently gave a Sh110 million loan to Global Supply Solutions, a Thika based renewable energy company.

ICDC is keen on supporting projects and businesses in manufacturing, agro-processing, infrastructure, energy and software development sectors.