Impact of Covid-19 on SMEs in Africa: Lessons from the lockdown 2020 in Kenya


The virus has reshaped consumption and how businesses are conducted in real-time, rapidly accelerating long-term underlying trends in the space of months. People are living differently, buying differently, and in many ways, thinking differently however businesses have also been forced to operate differently. Supply chains have been tested and some retailers are closing doors. The reduced physical movement and regulations around social distancing inevitably led to the number of economic transactions going down with people and enterprises not able to freely move around and conduct business as before.

The Lessons from the lockdown report looks at how Covid-19 has affected the operations of 231 SMEs in Nairobi county in the year 2020. It uncovers how the first lockdown affected SMEs and the subsequent analysis places the SMEs in categories of Stable, Strained, and Distressed (depending on how the pandemic and subsequent lockdown affected their respective operation). As this crisis continues to evolve, by exploring the changes that happened, we can consider what SMEs should do today to prepare for what’s next.

Kenya Business Guide is a think-tank that seeks to support the business & investment environment in Kenya through the provision of value-added information.


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