Factors influencing the income of 'boda-boda' entrepreneurs in Siaya District, Kenya
Masanga, Tom O
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This study examined the factors that influence the income of 'boda-boda' entrepreneurs in Siaya District, Kenya. The study was occasioned by the fact that despite an increased interest in the. Small and Micro Enterprises (SMEs) in Kenya, very little empirical research had been done on 'boda-boda' industry especially from the perspective of entrepreneurship. It was based on the Education Productivity Function (EPF) derived from the general Productivity Function Theory (PFT). In particular, the purpose of the study was to determine the effect of the number of years of schooling on the 'hoda-boda' entrepreneurial performance. The study pursued the following objectives: lind out the extent to which the educational level, personal initiative, innovativeness, experience and level of investment of the 'boda-boda' entrepreneurs affected their income. The study investigated the variables that. are assumed to influence the income of the 'boda-hoda' entrepreneurs. Such variables included: the 'boda-boda' entrepreneur's years of schooling, experience, job satisfaction, level of investment, innovativeness and natural ability. The study was based on the assumption that education includes the imparting of knowledge and skills through formal, non-formal and informalschooling and that all 'boda-boda' entrepreneurs had an equal access to formal education.The study employed ex-post facto research design and a target, of 60 respondents were selected through simple random sampling technology from the three divisions in the district. The interview schedule, questionnaire, focus' group discussion and documentary review were the main data coIiection instruments. The data gathered was presented into frequency tables and was analysed. Education-Production Function was used to explain the relationship among the variables under investigation. Findings of the study indicated that some 'boda-boda' entrepreneurs have no basic formal education. That education deficiency puts them in a very difficult situation when handling issues involving complimentary small and microinvestment opportunities at their disposal, basic public relations skills, road safety measures, interpreting government policies regarding the small business sector, sourcing for capital and basic personal hygiene. From the findings it was concluded that 'bodaboda' entrepreneurs with basic formal education significantly perform better than those with no education. Attitude was also found to be an important determinant of the entrepreneurial performance of the 'boda-boda' entrepreneurs. Those with a positive attitude performed significantly better than those with negative attitude towards the enterprise. The study therefore recommends to the policy makers the need to bring on board the 'boda-boda' entrepreneurs as primary stakeholders in the local intermediate means of transport (lMT) initiatives through sensitization and provision of credit facilities. This small and micro-enterprise sector should be looked at as a very important strategy of livelihood diversification especially in the rural and semi-urban areas.This study should however not be taken as being conclusive, for further learning there will be need for researchers. to carry out research on the same topic using a larger sample, carry out similar studyto the current one in other regions· of Nyanza Province and conduct a comparative study'on the topic in the urban and. rural settings.