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GenAfrica to enter unit trust business

SHAKA

Kuramo Capital co-chief executive Shaka Kariuki. FILE PHOTO | NMG

The Capital Markets Authority (CMA) has granted approval to GenAfrica Asset Managers — the fund management arm of Kuramo Capital — to register unit trust funds, becoming the latest institution to eye retail investors in the investment management business.

GenAfrica said in a statement Thursday the approval will allow it to offer its clients a “more diversified product range”.

Unit trusts allow individuals and small firms to make investments starting from as little as Sh500 in the collective investment schemes, which currently boast more than Sh134 billion in assets under management.

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More institutions are entering the investment management business, targeting retail investors.

“This is a goal-based product where we are working hand-in-hand with individuals in helping them meet their goals end to end,” said GenAfrica managing director Patrick Kariuki in a statement.

Asset managers earn fees, with the operations becoming more lucrative as funds grow.

GenAfrica, which has over the years largely focused on institutional clients and managing pension funds, is now keen to grow a retail client base following a trend set by other players.

Its pension products targeting retail investors include the Milele income drawdown fund, the property investment advisory and the Kivuli umbrella fund.

“These products are able to serve all sectors of our clients’ pension needs and support our regional expansion strategy,” said Mr Kariuki.

GenAfrica chairman Andrew Musangi said the shift is timely.

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“It is a very competitive market, we are not the only players in the market, but I am proud to say we are a significant player in this industry,” he said.

GenAfrica’s portfolio has grown to more than $3 billion (Sh351 billion) with over 100 clients across various sectors.

“Our goal has and continues to be offering our clients attractive risk-adjusted returns,” said Kuramo Capital co-chief executive Shaka Kariuki.

“Our commitment to this is evidenced by our efforts around product innovation, which has seen us introduce a Collective Investment Scheme product with the launch of a money market fund.”

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