THE ROLE OF MICRO FINANCE INSTITUTIONS SERVICES ON THE ACHIEVEMENT OF STRATEGIC OBJECTIVES IN SELECTED SMALL AND MEDIUM ENTERPRISES IN NAKURU TOWN, KENYA
KIPKOSGEI, NIXON KIMUTAI
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The performance of small and medium enterprises (SMEs) is considered one of the driving forces for developing countries like Kenya, where the economy has benefitted greatly from the contribution of SMEs. The traditional mode of delivering products and services by SMEs to the consumers is through a single distribution channel and that is physical SMEs branches. The aim of this study was to identify whether there is any role played by MFIs services on the achievement of strategic objectives of SMEs operating in Kenya and more specifically in Nakuru Town. Specifically the study sought to establish the role of training offered by MFI’s, investigate the role of Financing and examine the role of Advisory services offered by MFI’s on the achievement of Strategic objectives in S.M.E’s. The study used descriptive research design because the study involved describing a relationship that exists between a set of variables and taking on a survey where data was collected from SMEsowners and managers from a total population of 1,227 SMEs in Nakuru town with strategic plans as per the data provided by the existing 6 MFIs in Nakuru town. The study aimed at collecting information from managers and agents in SMEs on roles of MFIs services on achievement of strategic objectives in SMEs. Data collection instruments incorporated questionnaires, mainly structured in a 5-point Likert scale which was distributed to respondents through “drop and pick later” method. The researcher assessed the reliability and validity of data collection instruments and an overall measure of consistency of 0.840 was realized through piloting. Quantitative data was analyzed using descriptive statistics, Pearson correlation and regression, after entering the raw data into the statistical Package for Social Science (SPSS). The research findings indicated that training, financing and advisory service could explain 57.7% of the variations in the dependent variable which is the roles played by MFIs services on the achievement of strategic objectives of SMEs in Nakuru Town.Regression of results showed that training and achievement of strategic objectives are positively and significant related (r=0.543, p=0. 000), financing and achievement of strategic objectives was positively and significant related (r=0.599, p=0.000) and finally advisory services and achievement of strategic objectives were positively and significantly related (r=0.433, p=0.000). Regression results revealed that when training, financing and advisory services as an independent variableswere regressed withachievement of strategic objectives as a dependent variable showed a significant relationship exist (β = 0.529, p-value = 0.000), (β = 0.680, p-value = 0.000) and (β = 0.455, p-value = 0.000) respectively which clearly point to the existence of a strong and positive significant influence thus leading to the rejection of the all the null hypothesis in the study. The study may be of benefit and significant to the micro-financial institutions in adopting suitable financial strategies that would continue to spur economic development through promotion of small and medium business. The findings of this study can be useful for MFIs as well as SMEs owners to generate further ideas about their businesses and strategic objective implementationand enhance their financial performance.The study therefore recommends that the government should move in quickly to create policies that favour the growth and expansion of SMEs. Further research should be undertaken to establish the challenges of MFIs’ and the possible solutions.