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Why SportPesa has recalled ex-staff for meeting today

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The sacked employees of betting firm SportPesa are today (Friday) expected back to the firm’s head office in the capital Nairobi.

However, it will still be a walk of pain because their employer is not calling them for new job offers but redundancy notices.

On Thursday, the company’s head of human resource Terry Wanja Njagi sent an email to the ex-staff advising them to report at Chancery Building on Valley Road on Friday so that the termination notices issued to them on October 2, 2019 can be withdrawn.

NEXT STEP

The firm also told the ex-workers that after the withdrawal of the notices they will be informed of the “next step”.

When the Nation reached the firm’s CEO Ronald Karauri to establish if the move meant that the ex-employees might get back their jobs soon, he gave a terse answer: “No comment, no comment.”
But on Thursday he was quoted by a local daily as saying that SportPesa decided to call the employees after being advised to “issue proper and legal notices even as we wait for the Betting Control and Licensing Board to act on our application.”

READ ALSO:   SportPesa suffers blow hours after announcing return to Kenyan market

This meant that the betting company that controlled close to 60 per cent of the market share is still optimistic its will get back its operating licence.

The permit was withdrawn in July after the firm allegedly failed to remit Sh14 billion in tax arrears to Kenya Revenue Authority.

But the some of the 400 plus employees whose services were terminated were hopeful that the issues will be sorted out so that the can get back their jobs.

On October 2, Sportpesa announced that it had halted operations in Kenya due to what it termed as “tough regulations”, including higher taxation and tough advertising guidelines.

Before it closed, the company had been out of business for nearly three months after the government suspended its pay bill numbers.

SportPesa expressed disappointment at the government’s move to impose a 20 per cent excise tax on all betting stakes on top of the 20 percent on customer winnings.

“The economic incentive to place bets will be completely removed as the taxes will deprive consumers of their total winnings and will halt all investments in sports in Kenya,” the company statement read.

HIGH TAXES

The firm has, however reportedly said it would “consider returning to the market if provided with adequate taxation and a non-hostile regulatory environment.

READ ALSO:   Kenyans love bringing down their own – SportPesa CEO Karauri

The company’s annual revenues are estimated at Sh100 billion, although its management says it makes only Sh20 billion.

The closure of the betting company, alongside its rival Betin, send shock waves in the sports and media industries.

The company stopped sponsorships to clubs and the Kenya Premier League, which are already facing financial problems.

Clubs such as KPL reigning champions Gor Mahia have been hit hard, forcing the government to bail it out occasionally to enable it honour its continental fixtures.

On Thursday the government, through the sports ministry, had to buy Gor Mahia air tickets to Kinshasa in DRC for a return match against DC Motema Pembe in their CAF return leg on Sunday.

by NN


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Navigating through the Covid-19 Terrain and a Story of Exceptional Transformation at Optiven

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Navigating through the Covid-19 Terrain and a Story of Exceptional Transformation at Optiven

Optiven Group has continuously had all its eyes trained on its vision of economically and socially empowering and transforming the society.

This vision was however momentarily shaken by Covid-19, especially on the month of March 2020, when the first case was reported. Soon, all was not business as usual. The pandemic scared our staff and customers alike. With huge loans to pay, massive salary bills and many office rentals to cope with, everything seemed daunting. The worst was when we closed our offices and temporarily sent hundreds of staff home. That was extremely agonizing to bear.

As an entrepreneur, this was one of my worst periods ever. The headaches were not ceding ground and the only thing that was consoling was the power of prayers. It is during such times when the test of leadership comes to play.

Our most affected area of business was our sister venture entities in the name of restaurants. Indeed, we sent hundreds of staff home. We are now however thanking God that 85% of these staff are back and with a projection of bringing back the rest soon, as business starts coming back.

READ ALSO:   SportPesa suffers blow hours after announcing return to Kenyan market

Importantly, soon after Covid-19 pandemic hit, Optiven Group was swift in adopting new strategies and quickly embracing appropriate technology to counter the new terrain. This is perhaps one of the reasons why the firm is still expanding, especially on the area of job creation and mentorship front.

It is largely courtesy of these strategies that despite the current pandemic, we have managed to launch enormous mentorship programs such as the George Wachiuri School of Mentorship and also engaged in encouraging SMEs that have really been struggling to stay afloat through our business mentorship sessions. Through the latter, we have continued to inspire over 7,000 active participants through George Wachiuri’s Facebook LIVE shows that are also available on my You Tube channel, this has continued to give hope to many.

Still, during this period, we have managed to create over 100 permanent jobs for both senior and middle level employees, plus over 200 casuals that daily work in our projects. This job increase is in line with our goal of creating over 30, 000 jobs by the year 2030.

On the real estate front, we really had to think away from the box and undertake a massive 360 degree transformation that was educated by thinking differently and changing how we used to do things before Covid-19.

READ ALSO:   Kenyans love bringing down their own – SportPesa CEO Karauri

Thanks to this, we have continued to provide our customers with even more offerings in terms of value additions to our projects. It is during this period of Covid-19 when we decided to put our efforts towards GoingGreen in most of our projects. Matter of fact, we have surprised our customers by further transforming our projects through installation of green energy, massive tree planting, and installation of water recycling systems, encouraging plot owners engage in farming of organic foods and subsequently feed their families from their previously idle plots. Significantly, we also changed from use of Kenya Power electricity in our projects to the use of solar energy on almost all amenities and by so doing, we have now managed to save millions of shillings in terms of KPLC bills. Most importantly, we are glad that we are now fully plugged on the green energy agenda.

All along, the company has continued to flourish through innovation, partnerships, massive philanthropy activities and even more importantly, a commitment to always entrust all our undertakings to God.

We are glad that we are consistently realizing our vision of being pacesetters in social economic transformation through opportunities such as job creation that have a positive multiplier effect on the society.

READ ALSO:   SportPesa suffers blow hours after announcing return to Kenyan market

Guided by the same vision, we always dedicate 5% of what we make in business and channel it to the less fortunate through a registered foundation viz Optiven Foundation. We have hundreds of orphans whom we support to go through school. We also support the physically challenged to get free wheelchairs and support girls to access schools. The Foundation also cares for over 300 families and helps them to get food daily.

Indeed, we at Optiven exist to economically and socially empower and transform the society.

#ChangingLives
#EyesOnTheCommunity
#CreatingJobs
#GoingGreen
#HousingKenyans

Contact Optiven Group:0790 300 300
Email: admin@optiven.co.ke Website: www.optiven.co.ke George Wachiuri Blog: www.georgewachiuri.com
YouTube: https://bit.ly/2VdSuFJ


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How I made my first million

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At what age did you make your first million? 

I was 19.

How did you make it? 

I was running a creative design and printing agency. I bid for and won an order to design and print marketing materials for a global NGO which has offices in Kenya.

How did you spend or invest it? 

I re-invested most of it into the business by buying more machinery to reduce costs associated with outsourcing. I also set up a new business with a friend – a movie shop in Nairobi CBD.

The biggest money mistake you have ever made? 

Setting up the movie shop was the greatest money mistake – but I picked up two of the greatest business lessons. One, to never divest too early, and only invest in a business you understand well.

What is the best investment you have ever made?

 I would say investing in myself and in my exposure through travel. Travel has made me see endless possibilities for innovating new products, business models and solutions in the African market. A combination of the international exposure and strong local market understanding is priceless.

What is the worst purchase you have ever made? 

The movie shop. I bought a ready business that I did not understand and it went crumbling down. We eventually closed it a few months later.

READ ALSO:   Kenyans love bringing down their own – SportPesa CEO Karauri

If you had a spare million or two, where would you invest it right now?

I would invest it in my current business – a software technology company. This is because I believe the business has potential to become a great success.

What is the biggest money lesson you have learnt about growing it and making it work for you? 

Initially, we all have to work for money. However, I have learnt that the wealthy person has learnt how to make money work for them, through consistently investing what one earns.

Where do you learn about finances? 

I read a lot of books about real success stories from entrepreneurs because I believe entrepreneurship is a great way to create wealth, while creating value in the society. I also stay curious to learn about different investment vehicles because I know I shouldn’t put all my eggs in one basket.

Any financial myths you think should be busted? 

Money is not the root of all evil; greed may be. Money is a good thing because it can create freedom and prosperity, if well spent.

What two personal finance rules do you follow? 

Live within your means; and work to make money as a tool to accomplish real goals. Real goals are not just about making “enough” money, because it is almost impossible to define “enough.”

READ ALSO:   SportPesa suffers blow hours after announcing return to Kenyan market

Investing or saving…Which one carries more weight?

Investing. However, they go hand to hand as saving to invest is acceptable.

One can get rich easily… but how does one stay rich? 

By constantly making calculated investment risks, and always striving to be wealthy, not rich.


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Business

LET’S HOLD HANDS WITH OPTIVEN FOUNDATION

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By helping someone achieve their dream,
You are well on your way to achieving your own dream!

Together with partners like you, the Optiven Foundation is changing one life at a time, by reaching the most vulnerable and meeting their needs. Because the needs are growing daily, we are open to hold hands with you and make our world a better place. Make your donation to Optiven Foundation via Paybill 898 630, Account name: Mobility

For more info, call us on +254 718 77 60 33 or info@optivenfoundation.org
www.optivenfoundation.org
#TransformingLives
#RestoringDignityof Senior citizens
#SharingHopewithOptiven


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READ ALSO:   SportPesa suffers blow hours after announcing return to Kenyan market
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Special Offer: Own one starting at Ksh 3.7M


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