Fourth-largest City in Africa Also Preparing for Disruption
I departed from the captivating sights of Dubai, only to envision the path we’ll tread again in April 2024, retracing our upcoming journey through Lagos (Nigeria), Nairobi (Kenya), and Dubai (UAE) for our VIP Imaging Expo.
I have been travelling for two weeks as I prepare for the event that RTMworld will run in the Middle East and Africa (MEA) in 2024. Three, one-day events will be run in Lagos (Nigeria), Nairobi (Kenya), and Dubai (UAE).
Organizing an event isn’t just about rallying exhibitors; it’s about comprehending each market intricately to deliver tailored solutions that foster its growth. So, It has been a crucial visit to engage with prominent aftermarket buyers in the region.
Meeting Safdar Shah
Our second destination on this remarkable voyage is Nairobi. A bustling metropolis, Nairobi stands as Kenya’s capital, a thriving hub of vitality and significance. It reigns as East Africa’s most populous city and holds the prestigious rank of the fourth-largest city in Africa.
Navigating through the beautifully chaotic yet harmonious traffic, I found myself at the pulsating heart of the financial district—the central nexus of offices and banks. Here, my destination awaited: a meeting with another esteemed guest of our Nairobi event, Safdar Shah (pictured below with me), the Managing Director of Ahmed Business Machines Ltd.
Hailing from Pakistan, Safdar discovered his niche in Kenya a decade ago alongside his family. Drawing from his experience in establishing a family business in Pakistan, Safdar commenced operations in 2014 by specializing in the sale of refurbished printing and copying equipment, gradually expanding to include toner cartridges.
“Our customer base comprises 75% distributors,” Safdar affirmed. “Kyocera holds sway in monochrome, while Konica Minolta dominates in color.”
By mid-2022, Safdar embarked on authorized distribution for the Pantum brand of printers. “It’s been a rewarding experience, albeit with the significant challenge of establishing a new brand in the market,” he emphasized.
We proceeded to the warehouse a few kilometers from the office, where I was met with an impressive array of refurbished printers and copiers—approximately 4,000 units, predominantly Kyocera, Konica Minolta, and Ricoh. “Our pride lies in this inventory,” Safdar beamed.
Furthermore, they have successfully introduced their own branded cartridges, Optimun and Optimage, garnering exceptional market acceptance.
“Our plans involve expanding into Managed Print Services (MPS) and exploring inkjet solutions, with a focus on extending our business into neighboring countries,” Safdar revealed, contemplating the path ahead.
Concluding our meeting, we relished a delightful lunch, an opportunity to delve deeper into the fabric of everyday life in Kenya.
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Gustavo Molinatti is RTMworld’s international and regional events manager. He is based in Buenos Aires, Argentina in Latin America but now travels the globe preparing one-day, intense VIP events for big buyers and suppliers. He has organized more the 20 technical and MPS training events in several countries and is now helping RTMworld bring VIP Expo events to the Middle East and Africa, Latin America and Asia Pacific. Please contact<firstname.lastname@example.org>
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