Evaluation of Competitiveness Responses From the Leather Value Chain Strata in Kenya
Leather sector competitiveness encompasses fundamental aspects that provide the thrust to the sector. The prerequisites that are required include entrepreneurial-ship, harnessing of technology acquisition and transfer, research and development, appropriate policies and investment. In addition, these aspects through appropriate opportunity management and value creation initiative creates ambience in becoming competitive. The study also found out that productivity driven on efficient and effective resource management strategies are key for enterprises to be competitive in Africa. It is with this background that the study analyzed the responses from the leather strata in Kenya and related this to competitiveness. Moreover, the research evaluated the significance of the interrelationship between various stratums that interphase in the value creation process of the leather sector and also determined the impact of activities identified towards competitiveness. The study used a quantitative approach (n=244), descriptive analysis including an aggregate score to ascertain the top activities impacting on competitiveness in Kenya. The results indicated that producers and butchers were impacted with enterprise competitiveness and as a preference that followed, required the government to encourage investment. Traders were mostly concerned with price competitiveness and this was closely, associated with stiff competition in sourcing for raw materials in the country. However, tanners, leather goods and footwear required investments to improve on the leather and leather products with a concern raised for the flooding of leather products. This was deemed to stifle leather goods and footwear stratums’ competitiveness. In general, responses of the study were significant with the study depicting that with appropriate value-addition initiatives it is feasible to transform the leather strata to become competitive. Thusly, the overall results indicated that activities were significant (p<0.05) to the value chain stratum towards competitiveness. Therefore, this observation strengthened the aspect of considering competitiveness as key to spur tangible results in the development and growth of the leather sector in Kenya.
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