MENTOR SACCO MEMBERSHIP  DOUBLES WITHIN FIVE YEARS

Mr. Andrew Kibe, financial management consultant facilitating Mentor Sacco’s MID at Gatanga primary school.
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By making entry into new territories,   tier one Sacco continues to register steady   growth 

By George Gichuki

Mentor Sacco membership  has  almost  doubled within  the last five years.  In 2019, the  members were 22,609. Currently,  the number has grown to  over 40,000 as  the Sacco embarks on an aggressive marketing campaign targeting new  territories like:  Kiambu, Nairobi, Kajiado and Machakos. As part of this campaign, the Sacco has organized a series of education, training and information forums (dubbed MIDs) for its members  that will run for two months- May to June. The theme of these forums is: ‘Empowering members to add value to their lives through prudent financial management.’ The Sacco  has  partnered   with a team of professionals  who are well versed  in  co-operative  and financial   issues  to facilitate the MIDs which have recorded very high attendance this year. 

Start by a thought

Mr. Andrew  Kibe,  a graduate in actuarial  science and financial  modeling was the facilitator of the MID at   Gatanga primary school  on 11th May 2024. Before venturing into private practice in finance, Mr. Kibe worked for eighteen years in  blue-chip companies including a commercial  bank, insurance company, credit reference bureau  and the Nairobi Securities Exchange ( NSE). Drawing lessons from the book of Genesis in the Bible, Mr. Kibe emphasized to the members  the need to  understand  whom they are.  “ God first thought of creating man, then after speaking about it, his word became flesh,” said Mr. Kibe  adding that just like God, we are also creators in a process that begins with  having a thought.  “ When you speak about a thought, you magnify it to  become a reality.” Based on that analogy, Mr. Kibe advised the members not to harbour thoughts of being broke  when they are praying God to help them achieve financial freedom.  “ What you  think about ( including being broke) , gets manifested in your life,” he quipped.

Financial freedom

Mr. Kibe also took members through the cash flow quadrant. The concept is from celebrated author  Robert Kiyosaki’s book : Rich Dad’s Cash flow Quadrant – Guide to Financial Freedom.  The quadrant lists four categories of generating income: employment,  owning a small business, owning a big business and investments. The first two categories are on the left side of the quadrant, while three and four are on the right side.  “ Individuals on the left side of the quadrant struggle financially,” said Mr. Kibe. “ They work very hard, but unfortunately, their income is very low,” he added.

 To attain financial freedom then, he advised members to focus on being on the right side of the cash flow quadrant –  owners of  big businesses and investments –   where money will  work   for them.   Against this  background, those who are employed were advised   to   invest their income in asset classes with  high   returns .  Owners of small businesses on the other hand should either have investments or figure out how they will  grow  the said businesses.

Mr. Kibe decried the tendency of people to consume  the money that they earn instead of investing it. “  Mostly in  the African society, nobody exposes us to making investments   and running businesses at an early age and we  therefore end up being consumers as adults,” he lamented. “ Consequently, we   take loans to buy personal cars, do weddings and indulge in leisure hence limiting our opportunities of attaining  financial freedom,” he added.  To that end, he advised members to invest  their loans in cash flowing assets (for instance rental  houses) which will generate money for them on a regular basis.  On  the contrary,  non-cash flowing assets (for instance plots)  do not generate regular income much as their value appreciates with time. 

The journey towards financial freedom,  Mr. Kibe advised members,   can start by taking small loans from their Sacco  and investing them in small cash flowing  assets.  By  the same token,  he said  that  the   income generated by the  first  cash flowing   asset  should be saved in the  Sacco so as to build a second asset.  “Every year,  give yourself a target of  having   one cash flowing asset and in the next five years,  you will stop working for money and money will start working for you,” he opined.

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