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Carolyne Kanyua Wallace - School of Business, Kenyatta University, Kenya

Dr. James Kilika - School of Business, Kenyatta University, Kenya


The survival of SACCOs in a rapid market depends on their capability to align strategies and competencies with prospects in the external environment for the sake of achieving market leadership status. Innovation is one of key element that ensures that competitiveness is achieved. Innovation in business means doing things differently from Competitors, changing, altering or coming with a new way/process to a product in order to increase its productivity and improve its value. SACCOs in Imenti South Sub-County, Meru County are no exception as innovation significance increases, which is a key requirement for them in achieving competitive advantage. The study focused on the effect of product innovation, technological innovation, market innovation and process innovation strategies on competitiveness in Imenti South Sub-County, Meru County. The objective of this study was affected by two approaches: Resource based view strategy and Schumpeter Theory of Innovation. The study adopted a descriptive Design. The population of the study involved census of all the 46 Saccos in South Imenti Sub-County. The study also purposively selected 46 CEOs and senior managers. This lead to selection of 92 respondents. Questionnaire was the main instrument used in data collection. The instrument was tested for reliability using Cronbach’s Alpha Reliability test while content validity was assessed using expert opinion. The Statistical Package for Social Sciences (SPSS) Version 23.0 was used to capture and edit data from the completed instruments. Then, the process of testing data was initiated. Descriptive statistics was derived from the data, which included frequency data (mean, standard deviation and measures of relative frequencies). The results of the study were represented using tables and figures. Furthermore, the study undertook statistical testing, where hypotheses between the dependent variable and the independent variables were tested. The findings of the study indicated that all the study variables (product innovation, technology innovation, process innovation and market innovation) have a positive and significant relationship on competitiveness of Saccos in South Imenti Sub-County, Meru County. In conclusion, innovation is a very important tool for SACCOs since it protects them against imitability of key competitive elements in the market by identifying results which seems difficult to recreate for other competitors within the same market. The study recommended that innovation should involve all stakeholders in SACCOs, that is including Directors of the , Members, Senior Management and all other members of staff in the SACCOs, as a major tool to promote competitiveness and it should not be perceived as a management function alone but it should be adopted as bridge towards effective communication within the organization and as a strong key for the organization to remain at the top of the rest.

Full Length Research (PDF Format)