Impact of the youth enterprise development fund on the performance of youth owned enterprises in Kenya: The case of Ruaraka constituency, Nairobi county
Youth Enterprise Development Fund (YEDF) developed a three year strategic plan in 2008 addressing various needs and aspirations of the youth and to address the challenges it had faced in the past and was currently working on a 5 year strategic plan in line with the Medium Term Plan (MTP) of the Vision 2030. The fund is constantly reviewing its operational mechanisms from time to time in order to make it responsive to needs and expectations of the youth. In order to achieve its vision of creating a sustainable and growing fund, which would economically empower Kenyan Youth and their strategic partnerships, there is a need to understand the key areas under which it contributes significantly. Therefore, this study investigated the impact of YEDF on the performance of youth owned enterprises specifically exploring the factors that influence youth owned enterprises in Kenya. The study variables used were turnover of an enterprise, access to credit, market linkages, business training, employment created, age of entrepreneur, business experience, gender, age of enterprise, tertiary and university education. With the use of ordinary least squares in estimation, the study used collected primary data which involved a sample of 41 youth owned SMEs in the area. The study results show tertiary education, age of entrepreneur, access to credit, market linkages and age of the enterprise as being statistically significant factors that influence youth enterprise performance at 5% significance level. The study concludes that YEDF plays an important role in improving youth enterprises through the positive and significant relationship revealed by market linkages and access to credit. Therefore, the study recommends the development of clear National Development objectives to meet the special needs of the Youth owned enterprises through formal policies and regulations that guarantee achievement of anticipated results of these enterprises.