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First ever Laundromat opens in Kenya

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Kenyan entrepreneurs interested in the laundry industry are set to benefit from the launch of commercial laundromat by Alliance Laundry Systems, the US-based world leader in commercial laundry.

The world leader in commercial laundry is targeting entrepreneurs from major urban centres in the country who will receive full laundromat store concepts with all operational and technical support.

According to Jean-Paul Mailhac, Regional Sales Manager, Sub-Saharan Africa from Alliance, a fast growing demand for laundry services and products, combined with a booming economy and annual growth of more than 6%, makes Kenya the ideal place to start a laundromat.

“We have already witnessed that Kenyan entrepreneurs are passionate about a laundromat. Kenya is the country from where we have received the most inquiries by far. It is quickly becoming a need in this society as people spend a lot of time and effort on their looks,” Mr Mailhac said in a statement on the launch.

Urban centres have been targeted with Laundromats for what Alliance Laundry Systems terms as having the highest profit potential.

“For the majority of Kenyans living in urban areas, owning a washing machine is a considerable investment. The normal practice is washing by hand, an inefficient and environmentally damaging process. With an emerging market for Laundromats, this task can be easily and efficiently taken over,” Mr Mailhac explained.

Alliance attributes the lack of uptake of Laundromats in the country to the lack of global best practice experience, limited local technical expertise and no specific retail cleaning knowledge with Mr Mailhac adding that:

“These are exactly the reasons why we at Alliance decided to promote the laundromat concept. We will give Kenyan entrepreneurs the opportunity to make an excellent return on investment.”

The Laundromats are expected to offer convenience to their users in the urban centres and cutting the cost of running and owning a washing machine from their budgets.

“A Laundromat can professionally clean and dry laundry, making garments look newer, last longer, feel better, eliminating the need to own an expensive machine. One added advantage is having the flexibility to use the laundromat whenever necessary, due to the close proximity of stores. In the right locations, one store can service a 9km2 area – meaning plentiful opportunities in larger cities,” the Alliance Regional Sales Manager Sub-Saharan Africa pointed out.

To ease their entry into the country, Alliance plans to have a number of demonstration events in Nairobi to explain in detail all benefits their laundromat concept has to offer later in the year.

“We can help entrepreneurs from start to finish. Not only by providing the best-in-class machines, but also by giving them all the valuable input needed to operate a successful and profitable laundromat,” said Mr Mailhac.

Alliance Laundry Systems is present in 140 countries with a team of more than 2,900 employees.

-businesstoday.co.ke

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Business

BREAKING LIVE VIDEO: Police respond to gunshots reported at Dusit Hotel in Riverside, Nairobi.

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BY OLIVIA MUNGWANA

There are reports of gunshots at 14 Riverside office park in Nairobi’s Chiromo area.

14 Riverside Office Park houses  Dusit D2, Commission for Revenue Allocation, PR firm Media Edge and many other offices.

According to witnesses, it started with an explosion.

“Were lying on the floor in our offices can’t look out,” said one Twitter user @bnsearcher.

 

 

Screen grab of situation at Dusit Hotel

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Meet Murang’a woman who helps addicts quit alcohol and marry

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A woman from Kangema in Murang’a County has endeared herself to residents through her initiative of “saving a generation” by assisting drug addicts leave the vice and venture into agri-business.

At the same time, Julia Nyokabi is helping the reformed addicts get spouses and pay dowry.

Ms Nyokabi has brought together men who are not married and have been taking alcohol into self-help groups, giving them seedlings to venture into agriculture.

Interestingly Kangema Constituency and its neighbouring Mathioya Constituency will be under sharp scrutiny by the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC) as they are said to be underpopulated.

The philanthropist says she decided to rescue “the Kangema generation” which she says is on the verge of becoming extinct since they do not marry hence they do not reproduce.

She said the move will assist the men to get busy in the farms, giving them a sense of responsibility so that when they marry they will look after their families well.

Speaking in Kenya Njeru on Monday when members of Kihoto-Mwihoti Self-Help Group harvested potatoes, Ms Nyokabi said the proceeds from the sale of the produce will be saved in the group’s account and will assist them continue farming.

“I talked with the authorities and that’s how I was given consent to use public land for the groups to do farming.

“The members will rotate the earnings amongst themselves and when one gets a spouse, I will chip in and assist him pay dowry and each member will also contribute Sh200,” she said during the potato harvesting.

She revealed that the group has 96 members with 56 of them being under 35 years and are not married.

In Gitugu village, the group has 76 members and none of them is married.

She said those from Gitugu village are bodaboda riders, mostly graduates, whom she has assisted start a chicken rearing project.

“We want them to raise their self-esteem and impact them with the knowledge that they can be self-employed instead of waiting for white collar jobs.

“Riders are also blamed for all manner of vices including insecurity and are often arrested by police on patrol and we want them to have alternative sources of income,” she said.

Mr Ibrahim Menju, the chairman of the Self-help group, said the initiative has helped them quit alcohol and ventured into agri-business and are hoping to do better.

“Today we have harvested three sacks and we intend to plant cabbages to diversify. This has kept us busy and away from alcohol. We plan to have families and to widen the scope of farming,” he said.

Source: Daily Nation 

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Why Java House will not open again on Westgate Mall: Founder speaks out on what happened during Westgate attack

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BY OLIVIA MUNGWANA

Java House founder has said the coffee house does not have plans of going back to Westgate Mall which was attacked by terrorists five years ago.

Recounting what happened, the coffee house’s chairman and founder Mr Kevin Ashley, said they will not open another Java Coffee House in the mall because he would not anybody’s children as much as his own, to go back to the mall.

“My view is that if I don’t want my own kids to go there, why would I want someone else’s kid to work there?” said Mr Ashley.

Recounting the terrorist attack, the Java founder said he was in California when terrorists stormed in the high end mall and he was scared for his children.

“My kids were in Nairobi. First I didn’t know where they were…they could have been in the mall. When I heard the news, I was on the phone with our yoghurt shop manager who was on the floor hiding. I could hear the gunshots,” he explains in an interview with GainExperience.

He told the manger to make sure she had nothing in her hands and to keep her uniform on.

“Don’t move because a security guard might walk in and shoot you, thinking you’re a terrorist. Stay calm, relax, keep your uniform”.

He then got on a plane and 36 hours later, he was in Nairobi.

When he arrived in Nairobi there were still things going on at the mall, rescue missions which took upto three days.

“They were still unsure about killing all the terrorists, I met with all the staff, no one was hurt.”

The chairman has also faulted the mall’s management for going on about the business without putting up a memorial plaque to remember the souls that were lost in the premises.

“People died there. There’s no plaque, no memorial, no park, there’s nothing there! We don’t need to go back in there with a profit motive and try to make a point. It’s karma…” he adds

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