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Kenyan liquor tycoon Tabitha Karanja plans to run for Nakuru senatorial seat in 2022

After a month’s consultation with family and friends, she has decided to run for political office.  

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Kenyan liquor tycoon Tabitha Karanja.

Kenyan businesswoman and Naivasha-based Keroche Breweries Limited Founder Tabitha Karanja has announced plans to run for the Nakuru County senatorial seat come 2022, The Star reported.

After a month’s consultation with family and friends, the 57-year-old Karanja said she has decided to run for political office.  

“For months we have been involved in consultations with close friends and I feel it’s time I gave this seat a shot,” Karanja said.

The Nakuru County senatorial seat is currently held by Senator Susan Kihika, a Kenyan lawyer and politician who was the first female speaker of the Nakuru County Assembly before her election to the senate in 2017.

Noting how harsh laws and unfair business practices have chased investors out of the Kenyan market, Karanja said she plans to introduce new laws to bolster economic growth and promote investments in the country.

“I have been at the centre of the unfair business practices and given a chance I would introduce laws that would protect investors and increase business opportunities,” she said.

Keroche Breweries is a Kenyan brewer and alcoholic beverages manufacturer founded by Karanja and her husband Joseph in 1997 as a fortified winemaker.

The company is the second-largest alcoholic beverage producer in Kenya and a major competitor of the British-controlled EABL, holding a 29-percent share of Kenya’s alcoholic beverage market. 

Since 2015, Karanja’s Keroche Breweries has had a long-running battle with the government over tax returns targeting one of its famous brands, Vienna Ice vodka.

In August 2019, Karanja and her husband were arrested for tax evasion to the tune of Ksh14 billion ($126.18 million). They were accused of “mis-declaring” tax and VAT between 2015 and 2019. They were released on a Ksh12-million ($108,156) bail.

East Africa

Egypt’s richest man Nassef Sawiris loses $340 million in November as shares in Adidas slump

Since the year began, his net worth has declined by $44.2 million, or seven basis points.

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Egypt’s richest man Nassef Sawiris.

Egyptian billionaire businessman Nassef Sawiris recorded a multimillion-dollar net worth loss in November as a double-digit decline in the share price of German sportswear manufacturer Adidas caused his net worth to slump by $340 million during the month under review.

Sawiris, a member of the Adidas supervisory board since 2016, holds a 3.72-percent stake in the company. His beneficial stake in the sportswear behemoth accounts for a substantial fraction of his wealth.

Despite the marginal gains that he saw from his 30-percent stake in Netherlands-based fertilizer producer OCI N.V., the Egyptian billionaire recorded a loss in his net worth in November due to a 10-percent decline in Adidas shares on the Deutsche Börse in Frankfurt, Germany.

Data retrieved by Billionaires.Africa revealed that his net worth at the opening of business and trading activities on Nov. 1 was estimated at $6.89 billion.

The decline in the Adidas share price from €284 on Nov. 1 to €255.55, as investors sold off their positions in the sportswear maker after it reported a €600-million ($696 million) cut back in quarterly revenue, caused Sawiris’ net worth to fall to $6.55 billion on Nov. 30.

This translates to a net-worth loss of $320 million for the billionaire in the month under review.

Sawiris remains the richest man in Egypt and one of the wealthiest businessmen in Africa with a net worth of $6.55 billion. The figure represents 0.0786 percent from the total wealth of the 500 richest people in the world.

His current net worth makes him the 435th wealthiest man in the world.

Since the year began, his net worth has declined by $44.2 million, or seven basis points, placing him among the many billionaires who have recorded losses in their net worth this year.

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East Africa

Centum, controlled by family of late tycoon Chris Kirubi, kicks off new dividend policy

Centum is a leading East African investment company with investments in real estate and private-equity assets.

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Late billionaire Chris Kirubi.

Kenya’s largest listed investment firm, Centum Investment Company, has announced a dividend policy that will see shareholders receive 30 percent of the investment income annually in line with its strategic decision to build up and strengthen its balance sheet.

Centum is a leading East African investment company with investments in real estate and private-equity assets in the consumer goods, financial, agribusiness and power sectors.

The family of late Kenyan businessman Christopher Kirubi controls a 31-percent stake in the company, which amounts to 205,908,205 ordinary shares.

The company emphasized that the policy is integral to its target to maintain a zero long-term debt balance, as it moves to reduce finance costs while reinvesting shareholder capital into portfolio companies to increase value.

So far in 2021, the company has posted a total of Ksh771.1 million ($6.85 million) in investment income, more than 134-percent higher than the Ksh329.1 million ($2.92 million) it reported in the first nine months of 2021.

The new policy’s coming on stream will see shareholders pocket Ksh231 million ($2.05 million) in final dividends next year, Ksh13 million ($115,460) higher than its final dividend of Ksh218 million ($1.94 million) in 2021.

Kenyan businessman James Mworia, the CEO of Centum, announced the dividend policy on Tues., Nov. 30, during an investor briefing. He explained that the policy corresponds with its target to strengthen its balance sheet.

Earlier this week, Centum reported Ksh662.1 million ($5.9 million) in net losses in the half-year period of its current financial year, compared to the Ksh1.98 billion ($17.6 million) in net losses that it posted during the corresponding period of 2021.

The resilient performance was underpinned by increased operating profitability driven by higher investment income, as Centum continued re-balancing its portfolio in line with its capital preservation and liquidity enhancement objectives.

As of press time, Dec. 1, shares in the company were worth Ksh15.1 ($0.1341), 33-basis points higher than their opening price on the Nairobi Stock Exchange this morning.

At the current price, the market value of the stake held by the family of the late billionaire is estimated at Ksh3.11 billion ($27.6 million).

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East Africa

Kenyan tycoon Suresh Bhagwanji Shah’s I&M Group profit surges by 70 percent above $51 million in 9M 2021

I&M Holdings, or I&M Group, is the Kenya-based non-operating holding for I&M Bank Limited.

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Businessman Suresh Bhagwanji Shah.

Kenyan financial services conglomerate I&M Bank Group reported robust financial results in 2021 as increased interest income coupled with reduced interest expenses delivered a strong double-digit surge in profit in the first nine months of 2021.

The financial services giant posted a profit of Ksh5.7 billion ($51 million) from January to September 2021, which represents a 25-percent increase when compared to the Ksh4.6 billion ($4.1 million) in profit that it reported during the same period a year ago.

I&M Holdings, or I&M Group, is the Kenya-based non-operating holding for I&M Bank Limited. It operates through its banking subsidiaries in Kenya, Tanzania, Rwanda, and a joint venture in Mauritius.

Since the bank’s founding in 1950 by Shah, who holds a substantial 10.8-percent stake in the banking group, it has grown its operational footprint to other countries in the region.

Its expansion is evident in its recent acquisition of a 90-percent stake in the Ugandan bank, Orient Bank Limited.

The group’s profit in the first nine months of 2021 was driven by its assets and revenue diversification strategy, which led to the 15.73-percent growth in interest income to Ksh22.8 billion ($202.6 million), and a 5.2-percent decline in interest expenses.

Despite an increase in operating expenses driven by higher wages and salaries paid to the staff and loan loss provisions for the period, the strong double-digit growth in net-interest income spurred revenue above the $51-million mark.

As a result of this strong performance, the value of the group’s assets rose from Ksh344.7 billion ($3.0 billion) in 2020 to Ksh399.1 billion ($3.5 billion), while the value of the shareholders’ equity stake grew from Ksh60.5 billion ($537.6 million) to Ksh68 billion ($604.3 million).

As of press time, Nov. 30, shares in the group were worth Ksh21 ($0.1866) per share, 48-basis points higher than their opening price on Mon., Nov. 30.

At this valuation, the group’s market capitalization is estimated at Ksh17.4 billion ($154.6 million).

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