Home » 5 companies owned by reclusive Zimbabwean tycoon Zinona Koudounaris

5 companies owned by reclusive Zimbabwean tycoon Zinona Koudounaris

Explore the diverse empire of Zinona Koudounaris

by Feyisayo Ajayi

Koudounaris, a reclusive Zimbabwean multimillionaire businessman, known for his substantial impact across diverse industries, particularly his influential role as the driving force behind the creation and success of the Innscor Group’s core fast food brands.

Koudounaris served as CEO during its 1998 Zimbabwe Stock Exchange listing.  His interests extend to diverse sectors, including agriculture, mining, and real estate. Zed holds positions on multiple boards, notably Innscor Africa, Simbisa Brands, and Axia Corporation.

A top figure among Zimbabwe’s wealthiest individuals, Koudounaris faced accusations in 2016 regarding offshore account transactions, yet his entrepreneurial success remains evident, notably with Simbisa Brands operating over 413 quick-service restaurants across 9 African countries.

At the helm of Innscor Africa, Koudounaris with an investment portfolio worth more than $160 million on the Zimbabwe Stock Exchange serves as both Chairman and co-founder, strengthening his influence through strategic roles on various corporate boards.

His financial prowess is underscored by a 2.5 percent of Innscor Africa, an 18.41-percent equity interest in Simbisa Brands, and a 20.86 percent of Axia Corporation equivalent to 115,144,045 ordinary shares in the retail company that distributes electrical appliances, automotive goods, and fast-moving consumer goods.

Billionaires.Africa unveils five companies either founded or partially owned by Koudounaris, showcasing his multifaceted influence on the Zimbabwe stock exchange. Each company mirrors his strategic brilliance and steadfast commitment to diverse investments.

  1. Insscor Africa
    Insscor Africa, a diversified pan-African management holding company, specializes in manufacturing, distributing, and retailing food products. Koudounaris, often referred to as “Zed,” holds a 2.5-percent ownership stake in the industrial conglomerate. He co-founded the company in 1997 alongside his partner Michael Fowler.
  2. Simbisa Brands
    Simbisa Brands, Zimbabwe’s top fast-food restaurant operator, boasts a diverse portfolio of renowned quick-service restaurant brands. Koudounaris, with an 18.41-percent stake (equivalent to 413,075 ordinary shares), firmly establishes his presence within the group. As a spin-off from Innscor Africa, Simbisa Brands holds a significant African presence, operating across Zimbabwe and 10 other African nations including Kenya, Ghana, Mauritius, Botswana, DRC, Malawi, Swaziland, Lesotho, and Zambia.
  3. Axia Corporation
    Axia Corporation Limited, a Harare-based retail enterprise, offers specialty homeware furniture and electrical appliances across 38 outlets. Additionally, it retails automotive spares in Zambia and Malawi. Operating within the specialty retail and distribution sector, Axia focuses on household goods, automotive retail, and fast-moving consumer goods distribution. Koudounaris holds a significant 20.86-percent stake, equivalent to 115,144,045 ordinary shares in the group.
  4. Padenga Holdings
    Padenga Holdings, a Zimbabwe-based industry leader, supplies nearly 85 percent of the world’s Nile crocodile skins, catering to luxury fashion brands. Operating three farms in Zimbabwe – Kariba, Ume, and Nyanya Crocodile Farms – each breeding up to 15,000 hatchlings yearly. Additionally, the company breeds Nile alligators at Lone Star Alligator Farm in Texas, USA. Padenga Holdings not only produces crocodile skin and meat for local consumption but also exports to European and Asian markets, solidifying its global presence.
  5. Acia Aero Leasing
    ACIA Aero Leasing, founded in the early 2000s, is a regional aircraft lessor specializing in turboprop aircraft. Operating from offices in Ireland, France, South Africa, and Mauritius, we offer a spectrum of services, including aircraft leasing, operations, crew supply solutions, comprehensive maintenance support, and freight solutions. Koudounaris presides as Chairman of the ACIA Aero Leasing Group Board and leads the Group’s Investment Committee.

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