Kenyatta Family Businesses: When it comes to the business empire that Kenya’s founding president, Jomo Kenyatta, built, things have been moving from strength to strength as younger family members join the family business and help grow its territory. President Uhuru Kenyatta’s assumption of power in 2013 further served to oil the Kenyatta business juggernaut with most of the family ventures shifting into expansion mode. Here is a list of the businesses known to be owned or controlled by the first family:
1) NCBA Group
The Kenyattas control about 13.2 percent of the new entity, a level of ownership that slightly surpasses the 11.75 percent stake that the family of the late Phillip Ndegwa owns in the merged business. The 13.2 percent is valued at Sh. 6 billion. Previously, the Kenyattas owned the Commercial Bank of Africa mid-tier bank which then merged with the Ndegwa family’s NIC Bank to form NCBA Group. Prior to this merger, CBA mainly focused on corporate banking and banking for the high net worth individuals in Kenya. Its asset base was over Sh. 100 billion. It was credited with running the mobile lending and saving platform dubbed MShwari with Safaricom.
2) Mediamax Group
The Kenyatta family has a firm foot in the media industry through Mediamax Group which owns K24 TV, Kameme FM and The People Daily. Kameme and K24 are wildly popular. The Kenyatta family took over MediaMax from Rose Kimotho. Over the past two years, there have been reports that Deputy President William Ruto also owns part of the MediaMax Group.
3) Heritage Group Of Hotels
Some of the recreational facilities and hotels under the heritage brand include:
1.Great Rift Valley Lodge, a posh hotel located 24km from Naivasha town. It has an 18 hole championship golf course, its own airstrip and a perfect view of nature. You will also find swimming pools, cycling/jogging paths, tennis courts, restaurants and if you are a fan of bush breakfast, you will get some here.
- Camps that include Mara Explorer, Voyager Ziwani, Samburu Intrepid, Mara Intrepid.
3. Beach Hotels that include Voyager Beach Resort in Mombasa and Kipunguani Explorer in Lamu.
4) Brookside Dairies
The family’s signature milk processor Brookside Dairies Ltd, set up in 1993, has since become the market leader in milk processing and allied products in Kenya and the region. Back in 2013, Brookside acquired Molo Milk brand for Sh. 1.1 billion and this led to the company having a market share of around 55 per cent in Kenya. The acquisition was topped up with the establishment of a 1,500-litre capacity milk cooling plant in Narok. Brookside also controls Ilara, Delamere, Kilifi, and SpinKnit (makers of Tuzo milk brand). The brand has also established a firm stand across the East African region.
Additional business ventures
It is said some of Kenyatta family businesses are run under the radar. The family has been linked with:
Beta Healthcare (Pharmaceutical firm)
Timsales Holdings (Timber firm),
Land and Farming (Gicheha Farm located in Nakuru County)
Peponi School (a school that targets high net worth families in Kenya),
Koto Housing and C-Max.