Super-Market Super-Currency

Hundreds and hundreds of settlers in Nairobi's Kawangware informal settlement will soon benefit from access to low priced goods cooperativley stocked by the Gatina Business Organization (GBO) and sold in Community Currency. This supermarket will be one of a kind as it will allow customers to buy goods using both Kenyan Shillings and Sarafu-Credit.

Members of GBO have had a series of meetings to deliberate ways in which they can start, manage and run a small supermarket to encourage the use of Sarafu-Credit as well as increase trade in their network. Customers will not only be able to buy goods here, but will also get a chance to clear their Sarafu-Credit debts and claims on a daily basis, and get information about joining the network. GBO has been in existence since Oct 2014 and has seen tremendous growth both in membership and number activities.

By early 2015, the members of GBO had begun a savings and loans group which holds its meetings once a month to make its contributions. Once a member is consistent in saving with the group for a period of three months, and has contributed over Ksh. 1000, they become eligible for a loan that’s up to three times their savings. The loan is then payable within a time period of 3 months at a 10% interest. The more consistent a member becomes at paying back their loan, the more eligible they are for higher loans. The Unique Selling Point (USP) of the GBO savings and loans group is that members receive loans both in Kenyan Shillings and Sarafu-Credit. Only the amount in Kenyan Shillings attracts interest while the amount in Sarafu-Credit is Interest Free.

After one year of running the savings and loans group, GBO had made enough money to stock a small community supermarket. Grassroots Economics then partnered with GBO to help identify a prime location for a supermarket.

The official opening of the supermarket is set for mid-March!