Growth strategies adopted by top 100 SMEs in ICT in Kenya
Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) has been recognized as important contributors in the economy of many countries. It is vital for an SME to grow in order to remain competitive. According to researchers, there is no single theory which can sufficiently explain growth of an SME. Information Communication Technology (lCT) SMEs are no exception. The objective of this study was to determine growth strategies pursued by SME ICT firms in Kenya. In addition the study explored the factors influencing choice of growth strategies pursued by these firms. The scope of the study was small and medium enterprise ICT firms operating in Kenya. The 25 firms under focus of this study are those listed among top 100 SMEs in a study conducted by KPMG and Nation Media in their annual study in year 2008 and 2009. Descriptive survey was used in the study. This study population focused on all 25 SME ICT firms listed in a survey 'Top 100 Medium sized companies' conducted by KPMG and Nation Media in 2008 and 2009. Primary data was used in the study. A structured questionnaire was used to collect the data. Data collected was analyzed using descriptive statistics. Percentages and frequencies were used to analyze questions on the profiles of the respondents. Mean scores and standard deviations were be used to analyze data to determine the growth strategies pursued. The data was presented in tables and frequency charts The findings indicate, SME ICT firms have adopted various growth strategies in order to have a competitive advantage. Product development strategy was adopted by SME ICT firms to a large extent as a growth strategy. Most of the firms however have adopted a combination of various growth strategies with product development being adopted by a majority of the firms. Organic growth strategy on the other hand is more preferred by most of the SME ICT firms as a form of growth in comparison with inorganic growth strategy .On the factors affecting choice of growth strategies; corporate image has taken the lead. This is closely followed by competitive forces, and technological developments. The study therefore found that all SME ICT firms pursue various growth strategies as a means to survive in the competitive corporate world.