Actis and Improvon Group to build Nairobi Gate Industrial Park
The Africa logistics firm, Improvon Group, has partnered with the private equity company, Actis, to develop a warehouse located off Nairobi’s Eastern Bypass.
The Nairobi Gate Industrial Park is expected to cost Sh11bn (US$110mn), which will be funded by the private equity firm.
Actis were also responsible for purchasing the land to construct the 103-acre development on.
“We are delighted to be working with Improvon and launching the Nairobi Gate Industrial Park,” remarked Koome Gikunda, Director for Real Estate at Actis.
“We are bringing something unique to the market, not just from a development point of view, but also in our approach.”
“The face of warehousing and logistics property is changing, with companies migrating to better locations and consolidating into single facilities to achieve economies of scale and operational efficiency.”
“We are looking forward to partnering with businesses across the region as they make this journey.”
The logistics hub will be used for bulk importation and repackaging operations and will feature industrial and logistics accommodation for companies.
“Phase 1 of Nairobi Gate will span 103 acres and will consist of ultra-modern logistics, warehousing and distribution centres, bringing a ‘build to suit’ concept to Nairobi in response to the demand for grade A flexible spaces,” noted the CEO of Improvon, Stefano Contardo.
“In line with modern trends it will integrate corporate offices, with excellent access, wide roads and turning circles that can accommodate interlink trucks, generous loading facilities and the highest standard of security, all set in a park-like environment.”
“Nairobi Gate will be most suited to light industry, warehousing and distribution centres and offers power supply, adequate water storage, maximum volumetric capacity, wide column grids and generous parking.”
5 minutes with... Janthana Kaenprakhamroy, CEO, Tapoly
Founder and CEO of award-winning insurtech firm Tapoly, Janthana Kaenprakhamroy heads up Europe’s first on-demand insurance platform for the gig economy, winning industry awards, innovating in the digital insurance space, and leading with inclusivity.
Here, Business Chief talks to Janthana about her leadership style and skills.
What do you do, in a nutshell?
I’m founder and CEO of Tapoly, a digital MGA providing a full stack of commercial lines insurance specifically for SMEs and freelancers, as well as a SaaS solution to connect insurers with their distribution partners. We build bespoke, end-to-end platforms encompassing the whole customer journey, but can also integrate our APIs within existing systems. We were proud to win Insurance Provider of the Year at the British Small Business Awards 2018 and receive silver in the Insurtech category at the Efma & Accenture Innovation in Insurance Awards 2019.
How would you describe your leadership style?
I try to be as inclusive a leader as possible. I’m committed to creating space for everyone to shine. Many of the roles at Tapoly are performed by women and I speak at industry events to encourage more people to get involved in insurance/insurtech. Similarly, I always try to maintain a growth mindset. I think it’s important to retain values to support learning and development, like reliability, working hard and punctuality.
What’s the best leadership advice you’ve received?
Build your network and seek advice. As a leader, you need smart people around you to help you grow your business. It’s not about personally being the best, but being able to find resources and get help where needed.
How do you see leadership changing in a COVID world?
I think the pandemic has proven the importance of inclusive leadership so that everyone feels supported and valued. It’s also shown the importance of being flexible as a leader. We’ve had to remain adaptable to continue delivering high levels of customer service. This flexibility has also been important when supporting employees as everyone has had individual pressures to deal with during this time. Leaders should continue to embed this flexibility within their organisations moving forward.
They say ‘from every crisis comes opportunity’, what opportunities do you see?
The past year has been challenging, but it has also proven the importance of digital transformation in insurance. When working from home was required, it was much harder for insurers to adjust who had not embedded technology within their operating processes because they did not have data stored in the cloud and it caused communication delays with concerned customers at a time when this communication should have been a priority, which ultimately impacts the level of customer satisfaction. This demonstrates the importance of what we are trying to achieve at Tapoly in driving digitalisation in insurance and making communication between insurers and distribution partners seamless.
What advice would you give to your younger self just starting out in the industry?
Start sooner, don’t be afraid to take (calculated) risks and make sure you raise enough money to get you through the initial seed stage.