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Corporate

State agencies CEO exits beat listed firms

From left, National Bank of Kenya boss Wilfred Mutuku Musau, EAPCC chief executive Simon Ole Nkeri and TransCentury chief executive Ng’ang’a Njiinu. FILE PHOTOS
From left, National Bank of Kenya boss Wilfred Mutuku Musau, EAPCC chief executive Simon Ole Nkeri and TransCentury chief executive Ng’ang’a Njiinu. FILE PHOTOS 

Wilfred Mutuku Musau, CEO, National Bank of Kenya

Troubled National Bank of Kenya in October confirmed acting boss Wilfred Mutuku Musau as the chief executive of the lender for a five-year term.

Mr Musau, previously the bank’s director, retail and premium banking, had been acting CEO at National Bank since April following the acrimonious sacking of Munir Sheikh Ahmed.

His comes at a time National Bank is in a storm sparked by declining earnings, capital inadequacy, mounting volume of toxic loans, and corporate governance queries.

The new NBK boss will now be tasked with turning around the mid-sized lender back to profitability, raise fresh shareholder capital, review risk control, and enforce strict governance rules.

NBK’s total capital to total risk-weighted assets ratio stood at 12.6 per cent as at September 2016, which is 1.9 percentage points below the Central Bank of Kenya statutory minimum of 14.5 per cent.

It reported quarter three net earnings had tumbled to Sh521 million from Sh2.25 billion in September 2015.

Mr Musau is expected to finalise talks on getting Sh4.4 billion shareholder loan from the National Social Security Fund (Sh3 billion), and Sh1.4 billion from the National Treasury to help capitalise the bank.

Simon Ole Nkeri, Chief Executive, EAPCC

Simon Peter ole Nkeri took over as Portland boss in August to succeed Kephar Tande who had been at the helm for six years.

His tenure comes at a time the East African Portland Cement Company (EAPCC) battles headwinds related to declining earnings, bankruptcy, accounting fraud, corporate governance queries.

Portland’s operating loss nearly doubled to Sh1.58 billion in the year to June amid a soaring wage bill that has forced the company to cut 1,000 jobs, two-thirds of its workforce. The firm’s liabilities, at Sh4.96 billion, have grossly exceeded its Sh2.1 billion assets base, rendering Portland Cement insolvent.

The firm has hired Ernst & Young to carry out a forensic audit on inventory losses estimated at Sh900 million linked to staff theft and alleged cooking of books.

Furthermore, Portland shareholders are now experiencing a dividend drought for the fifth consecutive year.

The company last paid a dividend of Sh0.50 in the period to June 2011.

Kenneth Masika, Chief executive, Stanlib Fahari I-REIT

Stanlib Kenya in November poached an executive from realtor Lloyd Masika to head its real estate investment trust.

The investment manager picked Kenneth Masika as chief executive of Stanlib Fahari I-REIT, succeeding Anton Borkum who stepped down due to ill health.

The Standard Bank-backed firm is banking on Mr Masika’s nearly two decades of experience in the real estate industry, where he has been serving as a director at Lloyd Masika, to steer Kenya’s inaugural listed property unit.

Mr Masika is now tasked with growing the unit’s portfolio, cut costs and deliver returns to shareholders.

The unit has so far acquired three properties namely Greenspan Mall, Bay Holdings and Highway House with a property portfolio value of Sh2.4 billion.

Fahari reported half-year earnings of 23.19 cents per unit and a profit of Sh53 million.

Dan Awendo, Managing director, Home Afrika

The distressed property developer in February named founder member Dan Awendo as managing director.

The loss-making Home Afrika gave Mr Awendo a three-year term, tasking him to steer the listed developer back to profitability. Home Afrika made a net loss of Sh390.1 million in 2015 from a net profit of Sh8.96 million in the previous year, and has slipped into negative net asset position.

The firm, which listed on the Nairobi Securities Exchange in July 2013, has not paid a dividend since it went public.

Its flagship Migaa project will take between seven and 10 years to be fully implemented, said Mr Awendo in an earlier interview, beseeching investors to take long-term view of the firm as the cycle of property development is long.

Home Afrika’s share price has been decimated and the stock is now trading at Sh1.25 apiece from the listing price of Sh12 per share.

Andrew Cowan, Managing director, East African Breweries Limited

Mr Cowan, who has been serving as alternate director, was appointed group managing director in July at the brewer. The Briton joined Diageo, EABL’s parent company, in 2008 and has held various positions.

His task will now be to grow the bottom line, arrest costs, and define effective route to market strategies in an increasingly beer and spirits markets that has witnessed an influx of foreign firms.

EABL’s profit after tax climbed marginally Sh10.3 billion from Sh9.6 billion the previous year, largely helped by growth in sales of spirits and the low-end Senator keg, after the Kenyan government reduced taxes on the brand.

However, the British-owned brewer faced headwinds in regional markets such as South Sudan, Burundi and the Democratic Republic of Congo, mostly due to civil unrest in these markets.

Mr Cowan faces the hangover of pleasing shareholders next year, after paying them a one-off special dividend of Sh4.50 per share, following the disposal of Central Glass Industries and other non-core assets.

Kihara Maina, CEO, I&M Bank Kenya

Kihara Maina in May took over from Arun Mathur as I&M Bank boss after the latter retired but will take an advisory role within the I&M Bank Group.

He takes the corner office at a time the banking sector is in turmoil: interest rate caps, mounting toxic loans and mass retrenchments.

The group’s Q3 net profit surged by nearly a third to Sh5.1 billion buoyed by earnings form government securities. Loan loss provisions were up 54 per cent to Sh921 million in the period under review.

Ng’ang’a Njiinu, CEO, TransCentury

Mr Njiinu must have sighed with relief when the new owners of troubled TransCentury in November confirmed him to the position he was acting since the beginning of the year.

He had taken over from Gachao Kiuna who resigned on January 14 amid a storm on how to repay a Sh8 billion debt that fell due in March.

New York-based private equity (PE) firm Kuramo Capital bailed out TransCentury by injecting Sh2 billion into the investment firm in exchange for a 25 per cent stake.

In return, the new owners got veto powers on a range of decisions including the hiring and removal of TransCentury chief executive and chief financial officer.

Mr Njiinu joined TransCentury in 2008 and has since then held various roles in corporate finance, portfolio management, business development as well as originating and developing infrastructure opportunities.

His task is to grow topline, restructure debt, and sustain the firm’s profitability. The firm record a Sh1.3 billion net profit, an improvement from last year’s Sh676.1 million loss.

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