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PKF replaces Harveen Gadhoke as troubled Savannah Cement administrator


Savannah cement factory in Athi River. FILE PHOTO | NMG

A new administrator has been appointed to manage Savannah Cement Ltd after Mr Harveen Gadhoke, who has been steering the troubled firm since May, resigned last week. 

Mr Gadhoke resigned on November 6, about six months after he was appointed as the administrator of Savannah Cement. 

He has since been replaced by Peter Kahi of PKF Consulting (K) Ltd. 

Read: Savannah raises Sh65bn for set up of clinker plant

"Take notice that Harveen Gadhoke who was appointed as the administrator of Savannah Cement (under administration) on 24th November, 2022 and confirmed on 12th May, 2023 has resigned," a newspaper advertisement said. 

The cement manufacturer was placed under administration by Absa and KCB over a combined debt of over Sh10 billion debt.

Absa had placed the company under administration on November 24, last year and appointed Mr Gadhoke as the administrator but the company moved to court and managed to suspend the move. 

The application was eventually dismissed but Savannah Cement made yet another attempt to delay the takeover but it was declined once again.

In the July ruling, Justice Alfred Mabeya said Savannah Cement did not show that the conduct of the administrator was reprehensible or that there existed any compelling reasons to suspend or terminate the administration. 

On the contrary, the judge said the actions taken by Savannah Cement and Saruji ltd subsequent to the suspension of the administration are prejudicial to the administration. 

“Accordingly, the application dated May 15, 2023 is found to be without merits and dismissed with costs. Let the administrator take the charge and act in accordance with the law,” ruled Justice Mabeya. 

The court said despite warding off the attempts by Absa Bank to exercise its rights under the debentures for over a year, no cogent and satisfactory steps were shown by Savannah Cement and Saruji Ltd, to have been undertaken towards improving the financial status of the company. 

“No substantial or any repayments were shown to have been made for over a year. If any had been made, of course the negotiations the applicants wished to undertake with the Absa Bank respondent would have borne fruits," said the judge. 

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“That is astoundingly prejudicial to Absa Bank secured creditors who, in my view have been wrongly put on standby by the orders of this Court at the instance of the two companies,” said the judge. 

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