KWS puts up 13 tourist camps for lease in cash drive

EAM AWF rhinos

Rhinos roaming the Nairobi National Park, against the skyscraper-filled backdrop of the city. FILE PHOTO | NMG

The Kenya Wildlife Service (KWS) has put up 13 tourism camps for lease to private investors as part of a wider plan to boost revenue from its key assets.

The State agency on Tuesday invited bids from investors to develop and manage tourism sites in selected national parks it manages.

These sites up for lease include; Daraja la Mbao site (Amboseli National Park), Kisembe site (Nairobi National Park), Rangers site (Nairobi National Park), KWS Club House site (Nairobi National Park) and Sebastian restaurant site (Nairobi National park).

Others are Southern Bypass Sites (Nairobi National Park), Fig Tree Site (Meru National Park), Mulika Site (Meru National Park), Tusk Camp Site (Aberdare National Park), Ndololo Site (Tsavo East National Park), Patterson Site (Tsavo East National Park), Kanjaro site (Tsavo West national park) and River Hippo Safari site (Tsavo West National Park).

A lease is a contractual arrangement where a user of the asset pays the owner for a certain agreed period.

KWS in its 2019-2024 strategic plan had indicated that it targets to grow total revenue to Sh12 billion annually by 2024, through an array of strategies including asset leases, aircraft hires, and review of conservation fees every two years.

The call for asset leases by KWS comes a fortnight after the Privatisation Authority invited consultants to guide the sale of a Sh671million government stake in five top Kenya Development Corporation (KDC) controlled hotels, including the Kenya Safari Lodges, Mt Elgon Lodge Limited, Golf Hotel Limited, Sunset Hotel, and Kabarnet Hotel.

Other shareholders of the Kenya Safari Lodges & Hotels Limited will have pre-emptive rights to acquire the remaining shares of the hotel chain from the KDC, failure to which the sale of the shares shall be done through an open tender.

A pre-emptive right is a provision to existing shareholders in a corporation to purchase newly issued stock before it is offered to others. The right protects current shareholders from dilution in value or control.

The Kenya Safari Lodges and Hotels Limited incorporates the Mombasa Beach Hotel, Ngulia Safari Lodge, and the Voi Safari Lodge.

The sale of shares in Mt Elgon Lodge Limited, Gold Hotel Limited, and Sunset Hotel is expected to be conducted via an open tender, while the disposal of Kabarnet Hotels Limited will be via the sale of assets.

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