Kenya Breweries Limited (KBL), through its Tusker brand has partnered with Kenya’s first running shoe company, Enda Sportswear, to produce a high-performance running trainer dubbed ‘Tusker Mwanzo.’
The partnership with Enda is aimed at producing a locally manufactured running shoe whilst supporting local businesses in the shoe production value chain to realise their full potential throughout the process. This is in line with the brand’s ongoing Kenya Milele campaign that seeks to celebrate and support Kenyans from all walks of life.
While commenting on the partnership, KBL Managing Director John Musunga commended Enda for their commitment to expanding Kenya’s manufacturing capability and supporting local communities. He further noted that the partnership is founded on shared goals and ambitions between the two companies.
“Enda Sportswear is doing an amazing job proving to the world that Kenya has what it takes to be a major manufacturing hub for sportswear. Being the first Kenyan running shoe company, we applaud Enda as trailblazer in the sporting apparel space creating more opportunities through locally sourcing of raw materials, job creation and economic revenue generation boosting community empowerment to uplift Kenyans in the industry.” Said Musunga
He added “Being a Kenyan company that is centred on celebrating everything that is proudly and loudly Kenyan, the fit with Enda was seamless and we know such collaborations will strengthen the belief and resolve of Kenyans to support their own as part of the Buy Kenya build Kenya Initiative”.
On her part, Enda Sportswear CEO Navalayo Osembo said: “We are deeply honoured to work with Tusker on this project. Both Enda and Tusker are Kenyan brands that celebrate Kenyan excellence and the spirit of friendship and community. Both brands have also been accepted globally as part of Kenyan culture. This partnership made perfect sense and we hope it encourages more Kenyan brands to collaborate,”
Based in Kilifi County, Enda Sportswear runs a factory that currently hires upto to 100 employees in their production line which Osembo, mentioned is key to uplifting the community around them through job creation and economic empowerment for the youth.
“In the past we have relied on imported shoes to cater to the kenyan market but now we have the capacity to make these high-performance quality shoes locally that people are appreciating. Our hope in the next few years these shoes will be 100 percent locally sourced and manufactured from Kenya to the world, further creating economic opportunities for Kenyans to realise their full potential in the industry” added Osembo.
The shoe, Tusker Mwanzo has already been released to the market and is available for purchase from local sportswear stores. Additionally, Kenyans also have a chance to win a pair of the shoes through participation in the ongoing Tusker’s Cheer our Champions national consumer promotion.
Currently, the biggest market for the brand is in the US but there have been concerted efforts through the Tusker Mwanzo shoe production to target the local market where there is growing demand for quality locally manufactured products as part of the Buy Kenya Build Kenya initiative.