Nairobi Kenya:They are just 11 but very, very rich. Their wealth at the Nairobi Securities Exchange (NSE) increased by Sh27 billion in slightly less than 12 months. Mark you, that is only wealth in shares listed in their names at the NSE. They have much more in shares not listed in their names, but under nominee accounts or through sister companies to ones listed at the stock market.
Yet, another huge chunk of their wealth is in firms they own but are not quoted at the NSE. It is also worth noting that there is an equal orslightly bigger number of Kenyans who are as wealthy, if not more endowed, than the 11, but whose wealth is largely unknown to the public as their companies or businesses are not listed at the NSE. Top in the rich list of those whose wealth is measurable, at least through the NSE, is his Highness The Aga Khan who alone scooped Sh17 billion of the Sh27 billion.
Next is the family of the late Philip Ndegwa, at Sh3 billion, a former entrepreneur per excellence whose estate stands solid in real estate, banking and other investment. Then follows Dr James Mwangi of Equity Bank and Chris Kirubi who made Sh2 billion and Sh1.41 billion, respectively. The family of retired President Daniel arap Moi and businessman-cum-politician Jimnah Mbaru, just shied off the billion mark, to have their listed wealth at the NSE increase by Sh800 million apiece.
Close in tow are businessmen Peter Munga, Naushad Merali, Ashok Shah and insurance executive, Benson Wairegi, whose wealth increased by Sh620 million, Sh400 million, Sh400 million and Sh380 million, respectively. The Somen family, with their vast interests in provision of Internet services and banker Gideon Muriuki closed the super rich list with gains of Sh300 million and Sh216 million, respectively. The Aga Khan, who is the spiritual leader of the Ismailia community, made his wealth through his investments in the media, banking, insurance and hospitality.
He is the single largest investor at the NSE with majority shareholding in the media giant, Nation Media Group (NMG), TPS East Africa which runs the Serena chain of hotels, Jubilee Insurance and the Diamond Trust Bank. The NMG, by far the largest listed of the Aga Khan’s commercial interests in East Africa, had a market value of Sh48.5 billion by close of business at the NSE on Wednesday. Aga Khan’s stake at the company is 44.66 percent where his shares are held under the Aga Khan Fund for Economic Development.
The Aga Khan
Over the 12 month period, his wealth in the company grew by Sh10.1 billion from Sh11.64 billion to Sh21.75 billion as the company’s share moved from Sh166 to Sh312. In Tourism Promotion Services (TPS) East Africa, a holding company that has in its stable 21 hospitality establishments (13hotels and eight lodges) marketed through Serena Hotel and Lodges brand name, his wealth grew by Sh657 million from Sh3.1billion to Sh3.7billion. His shares in TPS East Africa are held through Aga Khan Economic Fund for Development, Industrial Promotion Services, Aga Khan University Investments, Property Development and Management (PDM) Holding, and Craysell Investment. In Diamond Trust Bank, his shares are held under Aga Khan Fund for Economic Development, Habib Bank, Craysell Investment and PDM Holding. In the past 12 months, his wealth in the bank grew by Sh4.9 billion from 6.7billion to 11.68 billion. In Jubilee Insurance, where his shares are held under Aga Khan Fund for Economic Development, his wealth grew by Sh1.9 billion from Sh4.09 billion to Sh6 billion.
Though heavy investors in a wide range of sectors: from farming, shipping, real estate and insurance, the family of the late Philip Ndegwa are in the securities market only through the National Industrial Credit (NIC) bank. The family’s shares in the NIC are held through First Chartered Securities Ltd and ICEA Assets Management Ltd whose directors are the late Ndegwa sons, James and Andrew. In the past one year, the Ndegwas wealth grew by Sh2.84 billion from Sh4.6 billion to Sh7.46 billion.
Dr James Mwangi
With a 3.45 per cent shareholding, Dr Mwangi is the biggest individual investor in Equity Bank. In the period under consideration, his wealth in the bank grew by Sh1.81 billion from Sh2.64billion to Sh4.46billion. The Equity Bank boss is also one of the biggest shareholders in life insurance firm, Britam, where his wealth grew by Sh187.5 million from Sh438.7million to 626.2million.
The industrialist and media owner’s investment in the NSE is through the Centum group. He was also the third largest shareholder in the Kenya Power company but has since sold his shares to Mama Ngina Kenyatta. In Centum, Kirubi’s investment grew by Sh1.41 billion while his worth in Kenya Power grew by Sh39 million to Sh269.9 million from Sh230.9 million.
Former President Moi’s most visible investments at the NSE are in Standard Chartered Bank and the Standard Media Group. In Standard Chartered where his shareholding is held under Kabarak Ltd, his wealth grew by Sh387.7million from Sh568.8million to Sh956.5million. In the Standard Media Group where his shares are held under SNG (Standard Newspaper Group) holdings, his investments increased by Sh409million from Sh1.297billion to Sh1.7billion.
Mbaru’s flagship business is the securities brokerage firm, Dyer and Blair. He is also a major shareholder in Britam and Transcentury Group where his wealth grew by Sh690.5 million. In Britam, his investments grew by Sh548.2 million from Sh1.28 billion to Sh1.83 billion, while in Transcentury his wealth increased by Sh145.2million from Sh581million to Sh726 million.
The Equity Bank founder chairs the bank’s board where he is listed among the top 10 largest stock owners with a 0.61 per cent shareholding. In Equity, his wealth grew by Sh319.4million from Sh465million to Sh784 million while he increased his worth in Britam by Sh187.5million from Sh438.7million to Sh626million.
The chief executive of Britam, Wairegi, joined the firm fresh from university rising up to his current position. He is one of the biggest shareholders in both Britam and Equity Bank where his wealth increased by Sh380million. In Britam, his investments increased by Sh250.7million from Sh586.7million to Sh837.4million while his Equity Bank stake increased by Sh129.3million to Sh317.6million from Sh186.3million.
He is the Kenyan version of US investment guru Warren Buffet with a knack for striking business deals while they are hot. Merali’s investments at the NSE are spread across agricultural, automobile and manufacturing sectors. His controlling interests are in Sasini Tea and Coffee, tyre manufacturer Sameer Africa and battery manufacturer Eveready East Africa. Through the three companies, Merali’s fortune grew by Sh431.7million. In Sasini, his investments which are held through Legend Investment, Yana Towers and East Africa Batteries grew by Sh246million from Sh1.477billion to Sh1.723billion while in Sameer Africa his wealth grew Sh119.4million to Sh844.4million from Sh724.9million. In Eveready East Africa where his shares are held under East Africa batteries, his investments grew by Sh66million.
The Somen family came to the limelight when it listed Access Kenya, a communication company that sells corporate bandwidth, small offices and up market homes across the country. The company has been in the news lately following a bid by South Africa firm, Dimension Data PLC, to buy all the 218 million shares in the company. Somen family’s shares in Access Kenya are held separately by three members of the family, the patriarch Michael Somen, and his two sons Jonathan and David. Jonathan, the company’s managing director, is the majority shareholder followed by David and his father in that order. Their wealth increased by Sh323.6million in the last 12 months. Jonathan’s worth in the company increased by Sh181.3million from Sh172million to Sh353.3million while David’s grew by Sh78million from Sh74million to Sh152million.Michael’s worth grew by Sh64.3million from Sh61million to Sh125.3million.
The Cooperative Bank managing director is the second biggest shareholder in the bank and the biggest individual shareholder. He gained Sh216million from his seven percent shareholding pushing his investments’ worth from Sh1.095billion to Sh1.31billion. Muriuki is also the biggest shareholder in CIC Insurance.
The founder of APA Insurance firm is one of the major players in both general and life insurance. His investments in NSE are spread across automotive, commercial, banking and insurance. His name features among the top shareholders in CMC Motor Group, Barclays Bank, Kenya Airways, and Pan Africa Life Insurance where his investments grew by Sh26.1 million. In Barclays Bank, his wealth grew by Sh2.4million from Sh6.1million to Sh8.6million, while in Pan Africa Life his portfolio gained by Sh39.6million.