The Hustler Fund, Nairobi City County, and Equity Bank Honored at the Small Business Awards 2023 Ceremony for their Outstanding Support to Small Businesses

Awards Created to recognize Key supporters of Small Businesses in Kenya

30.09.2023 | Nairobi

Elizabeth N. Nkukuu CFA – Ag. Chief Executive Officer, Financial Inclusion Fund (Hustler Fund) receives the Small Business Supporter of the Year Award from Rachel Ndungu, CEO – Biashara Africa (right). Looking on is Victor Agolla, County Chief Officer – Digital Economy and Startups, Nairobi City County (right) and Ezekiel Macharia, Managing Director and Chief Actuary – Kenbright (left)

Small Businesses feted several players for their role in supporting small businesses, during the Annual Small Business Awards (SBA) Ceremony held in Nairobi. The much-anticipated annual award gala brought together small business owners, entrepreneurs, industry experts, and community leaders in Kenya to celebrate and recognize the remarkable achievements of small businesses and those who empower them. The Annual Small Business Awards event is hosted by Deloitte East Africa and Biashara Africa, a leading advocate for small businesses 

During the Awards Ceremony, The Hustler Fund was awarded the prestigious Small Business Supporter of the Year for its exceptional initiatives, programs, and services that have empowered and uplifted small businesses. The Nairobi City County was also recognized as the Most Supportive County while Equity Bank was feted the Best Bank of the Year for its commitment to understanding and helping to solve the unique financial needs of small businesses

Gerald Warui, the Managing Director of Equity Bank Kenya, conveyed the bank’s commitment to supporting small businesses. He stated, ”This award is a testament to our passion to partner with small business owners. We recognize the challenges faced by small businesses and the crucial role they play in our communities. That is why we are committed to providing them with the necessary financial resources, guidance, and personalized support to help them thrive and contribute to economic prosperity. Our dedication extends beyond financial assistance as we build lasting relationships, understand specific needs, and tailor solutions. We have specialized teams to address the unique challenges small businesses face, providing personalized guidance, financial advice, and strategic insights to navigate uncertain market conditions successfully.“

The 2023 Small Business Awards Ceremony brought together delegates from over 30 counties and  was marked with  great excitement, inspirational speeches and celebration.. The event also provided a platform to honor some  entrepreneurs who have demonstrated remarkable innovation, resilience, and dedication to making a positive impact in their respective fields. Among the small businesses honored during the gala were Crafts With Meaning, DIRO Jewellers, Kono Farm Entreprises, EcoBana Limited, Chairs R Us Ltd., Andy Speaks 4 Special Needs Persons, RoKa Bags Africa, Jowi 98.1 FM, and Pick-Up Mtaani. Speaking at the event, Rachel Ndungu, CEO for Biashara Africa, pointed out the vital role that small businesses play in driving economic growth and creating job opportunities. She added:

“We believe in the power of entrepreneurship and the immense potential of small businesses. Together, we continue to dedicate our efforts to empowering and uplifting small businesses, by providing them with the resources, programs, and services they need to thrive. The Small Business Awards is one such initiative aimed at fostering a vibrant and resilient community of small business in the country. This is what we love to do, it is what we will continue to champion, it is what we will support” 

The event was graced by Anne Muraya, CEO of Deloitte EA, who also delivered an inspiring keynote speech. Other industry experts from various organizations such as the Financial Inclusion Fund (Hustler Fund), Nairobi City County, Kenya Private Sector Alliance (KEPSA), Equity Bank (Kenya) Ltd., and Kenbright Group also spoke during the event, sharing their entrepreneurial experiences and aspirations. The event also  gave attending entrepreneurs a  platform to connect, collaborate, and exchange ideas. The top 50 finalists of the Small Business Awards were also officially welcomed into the Community of Small Business Leaders during the event. 

Other Key Voices from the event:

“We extend our heartfelt congratulations to all the winners of the Small Business Awards 2023. These entrepreneurs have demonstrated exceptional leadership and have set a high standard for small businesses across Kenya. We are proud to celebrate their accomplishments and look forward to witnessing their continued success.” Gladys Makumi, Corporate Responsibility and Sustainability Leader, Deloitte East Africa.

“We celebrate the success and achievements of these outstanding small businesses. The Small Business Awards is a testament to their hard work, dedication, and innovation. These entrepreneurs have not only made a significant impact in their industries but have also contributed to economic growth and job creation,” Harrison Ngatia, Head of SME Development for Kenya Private Sector Alliance (KEPSA).


Institutions category:

Small Business Supporter of the Year Award

WINNER: The Hustler Fund

Most Supportive County Award 

WINNER: Nairobi City County

Best Bank of the Year Award

WINNER: Equity Bank Kenya Ltd.

Logistics Provider of the Year Award

WINNER: Pick-up Mtaani

Entrepreneurs category:

Caroline Ng’ang’a, Crafts With Meaning

WINNER – Small Business of the Year Award

Dianga Ochino, DIRO Jewellers

WINNER – Female-Owned Small Business of the Year Award

Ann Tobiko, Meishan International Merchants

1ST RUNNER-UP – Female-Owned Small Business of the Year Award

Alice Kariuki, Candle of Hope Beauty Clinic

2ND RUNNER-UP – Female-Owned Small Business of the Year Award

Asha Rashid, Ayshah Maji Safi

4TH POSITION – Female-Owned Small Business of the Year Award

Moreen Njeri, Mauca Welders and Fabricators

5TH POSITION – Female-Owned Small Business of the Year Award

Ephraim Okeyo, Kono Farm Entreprise

WINNER – Youth-Owned Small Business of the Year Award

Lennox Omondi, EcoBana Limited

WINNER – The Youngest Small Business Owner of the Year

Rakhi Shah, Chairs R Us Ltd.

WINNER – Fastest Growing Small Business Award

Robert Mrima, Roka Bags Africa

WINNER – Sustainability Award

Sylvia Akinsiku, Andy Speaks 4 Special Needs Persons

WINNER – Diversity and inclusion Award

David Bondo, Jowi FM

WINNER – Community Impact Award

About the Small Business Awards (SBA)

Small Business Awards (SBA) is an initiative of Biashara Africa that recognizes, honours, and celebrates Women, Youth and PWD Owned Small Businesses in Kenya that have demonstrated exceptional performance in innovation, sustainability, social responsibility, customer value, and financial performance AND Organizations that support these Small Businesses to thrive.

About Biashara Africa

Biashara Africa is an Entrepreneur Support Organization catalyzing the growth of Women and Youth-owned Small Businesses by providing them with Digital and Financial Skills, Market Linkages and Financing with a goal to create Sustainable Livelihoods and Jobs. Learn more about our work on

About Deloitte East Africa

Deloitte refers to one or more of Deloitte Touche Tohmatsu Limited (“DTTL”), its global network of member firms, and their related entities. DTTL (also referred to as “Deloitte Global”) and each of its member firms are legally separate and independent entities. DTTL does not provide services to clients. Please see to learn more. 

Deloitte East Africa has existed over the years, dedicated since 1907, providing seamless cross-border services to multinationals, large national enterprises, MSMEs, and the public sector; with offices in Kenya, Tanzania, Uganda, and in the process of expanding our operations by re-opening an office in Ethiopia. Currently, we have over 900 staff across East Africa. We are committed to our purpose, shared values, and leading a diverse, respectful, inclusive culture. Our commitment remains focused on a holistic approach, ensuring our people are first by creating a diverse and inclusive environment.

Deloitte provides audit, tax, consulting, and financial advisory services to public and private clients spanning multiple industries. With a globally connected network of member firms in more than 150 countries, Deloitte brings world-class capabilities and high-quality service to clients, delivering the insights they need to address their most complex business challenges. Deloitte has more than 450,000 professionals committed to becoming the standard of excellence of professional services firms.


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