A number of Jibu Kenya Franchisees are in fear if the taxman comes after them as the firm doesnt remit their excise tax on production level.
Though Jibu collects Ksh 2 license fee on a litre level from its franchise owners, it does not remit the fees to KRA as expected. Jibu runs a franchise of social entrepreneurs who produce, repackage and sale water as independent networks or retail store fronts. A Jibu franchise has a retail space, as well as on-site water treatment, bottling, and sealing. Jibu franchises produce thousands of liters of bottled water each day. Microfranchises, in contrast,
distribute water but do not produce it.
“From the look of it, the business was very promising since the business was an essential service solving a common problem that we face as Kenyans access to clean and affordable purified water. I had to become a reseller for a period of three months in order to hit the sales target, I did achieve the target and thereafter parted with $4000 OR Ksh 400,000 to be awarded a machine and well fitted premises. The Ksh 400,000 included machine and fit-out.
The concerned fanchise investors say they started vending water from their business premises and realized that everything was done in a rush. Jibu allows investors to vend its water without KEBS License and without KRA Excise license. The investors say their main problem is that every time they ask for the KEBs cerification they are always taken round in circles.Most of the stores have no KEBS License and no KRA Excise license.
“My challenge is that they set targets for you as a franchisee yet you haven’t complied, If you don’t hit the targets they threaten you with unlawful termination. So far they have terminated 4 franchisees this year alone if you don’t toe to their line,” she told TechMoran.
“They have a data harvesting tool fieldpro to be precise that has a mandatory field that you have to take a photo of where the client lives and location pin without their consent. I am reaching out since I represent a majority of franchisees who trade in fear. Some have bought going concern businesses that have pushed over 500,000 liters and yet have remitted little or no tax to KRA for Excise tax. When you ask them name drop about big law firms that they have contracted to act on behalf in case of anything Plus they know people in KRA, they told TechMoran.
Lastly, they are a field partner of Kiva, They make you sign documents and sign consent then they go ahead and take a loan worth Ksh 2,500,000 to Ksh 3,000,000 yet they only give you Ksh 500,000 maximum worth of a delivery tool. If you dare ask they tell you that the loan was taken to finance your business yet you pay Ksh 2 for every little of water you vend and prices are capped at Ksh 250 for 20 Litres, Ksh 130 for 10 Litres. You can not complement the business with any other business yet you have a tenancy agreement with your landlord even M-Pesa is prohibited.
“We are in fear and we are over 20 franchisees in Kenya. The management office in Kenya is normally on leave every other day and offering little or no support to us investors. We feel wasted we feel like employees yet we should be partners, the investors told techMoran.