Ghabbour Auto (GB Auto), an Egyptian automobile manufacturer led by one of the country’s top executives, Raouf Ghabbour, has announced plans to establish a joint venture to assemble and distribute passenger vehicles in Kenya, the largest economy in East Africa.
According to a regulatory filing published by the Egyptian automaker, the decision was made following a board meeting in which the firm’s directors approved participation in the establishment of a joint venture in Kenya called GB Automotive for car trade and manufacturing.
The decision is expected to deepen the firm’s operations across Africa in accordance with its strategic expansion plans, which include expanding its presence in the Middle East and Africa as it seeks to increase earnings and revenue.
Ghabbour founded GB Auto in 1985 as a manufacturer of automobiles, buses, lorries and motorcycles in Egypt. Since then, the company has grown to become one of the leading car assemblers and distributors in the Middle East and North Africa.
The Cairo-based automaker has an exclusive agreement with Mazda to import and sell Mazda-branded vehicles in Egypt. The wealthy Ghabbour family owns 62.9 percent of the company, which is currently valued at EGP2.71 billion ($146.5 million).
GB Auto’s net profit increased by 66.6 percent by the end of 2021 from EGP1.11 billion ($70.6 million) in 2020 to EGP1.85 billion ($117.6 million), reflecting strong performance and increased consumer demand across all of the group’s business lines during the period.
The group’s revenue increased 34.9 percent year-on-year from EGP23.31 billion ($1.48 billion) in 2020 to EGP31.44 billion ($2 billion) in 2021.
The high revenue growth was driven by a 67.3-percent increase in revenue from local passenger vehicle sales, which increased from EGP7.7 billion ($489.9 million) in 2020 to EGP12.88 billion ($819.4 million) in 2021, and a 26.3 percent increase in revenue from motorcycle and three-wheeler sales.