Home Business Kuramo Capital calls for enhanced Kenya-DRC cross border trade

Kuramo Capital calls for enhanced Kenya-DRC cross border trade

Kuramo Capital co-CEO Shaka Kariuki.

Kenyan investors have being challenged to consider the Democratic Republic of Congo as an investment destination as the African Continental Free Trade Area gathers pace.

Kuramo Capital Management has called on investors and financiers to invest in DRC terming the investment opportunities in the region as low hanging fruits that have the potential of generating attractive risk adjusted returns.

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Speaking during the Equity Investors Roadshow in Kinshasa, DRC, Kuramo Capital Co-Chief Executive Officer Shaka Kariuki said the East Africa Region is ripe with untapped investment opportunities.

Kuramo Capital invested in the largest palm oil production company in DRC, Plantations et huileries du Congo – PHC, in 2017 and acquired 76pc stake in 2020. PHC has a long history having been established in 1911.

“When we took majority control of the business, it had not been profitable for more than 20 years. With the introduction of global best practices in governance and the introduction of Congolese leadership, Kuramo was able to turn around the business in less than 4 years,” said Kariuki

The inclusion of DRC to the East Africa Community (EAC) is of significant benefit to Kenyan investors interested in expanding their markets. It also opens market opportunities for Kenyan Companies to do business in DRC and leverage the low market penetration opportunities.

Bilateral between the two countries have continued to rise in recent years. In 2022, Kenya exports to DRC topped Ksh 20.3 billion while imports from DRC stood at Ksh 4.4 billion.

Over 50 investors participating in the Equity Investors RoadShow paid a courtesy call to PHC offices in Kinshasa to explore available investment opportunities in the company which is the second largest employer to government with over 10,000 employees with direct contracts.

“Today the business is one of the most profitable companies in DRC. Our experience in DRC has been a positive one. I would encourage anybody, especially my fellow Kenyans to come and do business in DRC,” added Kariuki.

Various areas of collaboration between the two countries were discussed with Kariuki retaliating to the need for cross border transactions that are mutually beneficial to the two East African Community member countries.

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