Environmental factors influencing the growth of exports of handicraft products in Kenya
International business has been defined as the exchange of goods and services among individuals and businesses in multiple countries. It includes importing and exporting, portfolio investments of companies, direct investments in other countries and licensing. The objective of this study was to determine the factors that influence the growth of export sales of the Kenyan handicrafts industry. The environmental factors include socio-cultural issue such as attitudes of the country’s people and the dominant language used in a country and so on. The technological environment of the country seeking to export the products will determine the sort of products made and the cost while the economic factors such as the inflation rate and foreign exchange rates will affect what products if any one country will export to another Qualitative research design method was used to investigate and collect data. The population study sought to describe the structural characteristics of the handicrafts industry in Kenya by studying firms in different locations in Nairobi. The population of the study was 25 Commercial Craft Companies randomly drawn from Nairobi. The questionnaire used was designed to obtain data on whether the firms export their products, to which countries, if they use technology to aid them in any of their processes and also environmental factors which influence the growth of export sales. They were edited for completeness and consistency and content was used to analyse the qualitative information. From the findings, the study concluded that the craftsmen get their goods to customers in other countries by the use of middlemen and most of the craftsmen do not know what the export promotion council does and have never gone to the export promotion council to seek business aid. vi Further, the study found that the craftsmen did not have any form of professional training and therefore recommends that, in order to produce quality goods that can attract foreign market; they should be trained in artwork and the government should sensitize the craftsmen on what the export promotion council does and so that they can go to the export promotion council to seek business aid.