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Apr 10, 2014

Kenyan IT firm Seven Seas postpones IPO to 2017

NAIROBI, April 10 (Reuters) – Seven Seas Technologies, one
of Kenya’s biggest IT companies, has pushed back its initial
public offering until 2017 to allow it time to tap new countries
in Africa and reduce its reliance on its home market.

CEO Mike Macharia, who founded the company 14 years ago,
said Seven Seas aims to generate 50 percent of annual revenue
from Kenya by the time it goes public, compared to 80 percent at
present, and the rest from other African markets.

Apr 4, 2014

Kenyan bank debts become more transparent

NAIROBI, April 4 (Reuters) – Kenyan lenders look set to
chalk up more bad debts after they ticked up last year as higher
rates bit and payments were withheld from government contractors
during the east African country’s political transition.

But the short-term pain may herald long-term gain as another
factor has been added to the bad loan mix – stricter enforcement
by the central bank of its own prudential rules.

Apr 1, 2014

Kenya to start building 4G Internet network next year

NAIROBI, April 1 (Reuters) – Kenya will start building its
fourth generation (4G) Internet network next year and is open to
talks with operators on the best roll-out model, its telecoms
minister said on Tuesday.

The east African nation of 40 million people wants to launch
the 4G high-speed broadband network as part of efforts to raise
the Internet’s contribution to economic growth to 10 percent in
2017 from 2.9 percent this year.

Mar 25, 2014

StanChart Kenya sees growing middle-class boosting 2014 growth

NAIROBI, March 25 (Reuters) – Standard Chartered Bank of
Kenya expects east Africa’s burgeoning middle class to
drive growth in 2014 after it recorded a 16 percent rise in 2013
pretax profit, its chief executive said.

The lender, which is controlled by Standard Chartered Plc
, said its net interest income jumped by 18 percent to
16.8 billion shillings ($194.00 million), driving pretax profits
to 13.4 billion shillings ($154.73 million).

Mar 13, 2014

Kenya likely to start marketing Eurobond later this month-IMF

NAIROBI, March 13 (Reuters) – Kenya plans to begin marketing
its debut Eurobond at the end of this month, and investor
interest in the issue appears strong, the International Monetary
Fund said on Thursday.

Kenya expects to borrow up to $2 billion from international
markets to refinance an existing syndicated loan of $600 million
and to fund the construction of infrastructure projects.

Mar 6, 2014

Cash-rich African private equity still on a learning curve

NAIROBI, March 6 (Reuters) – Kenyan entrepreneur Ayisi
Makatiani scrapped his first effort to launch a private equity
fund 10 years ago because his pitch
to invest in Africa couldn’t raise enough cash to make it work.

Fast forward a decade and he is now managing partner of
Fanisi Capital, a $50 million fund that has investments across
east Africa in agri-business, healthcare, retail and education.
A second $100 million fund is on the way.

Feb 27, 2014

Kenya’s KCB eyes higher returns after 17 pct profit jump

NAIROBI, Feb 27 (Reuters) – Kenya’s biggest bank by assets,
KCB, will centralise its operations through its
information technology banking platform this year to cut costs
and increase profitability, its management said on Thursday.

The lender, which operates in six eastern African countries,
posted a 17 percent jump in its pretax profit for last year to
20.1 billion shillings ($232.37 million).

Feb 19, 2014

Kenya’s Housing Finance to borrow after sovereign bond

NAIROBI, Feb 19 (Reuters) – Kenya’s second-largest mortgage
lender, Housing Finance Ltd, will issue a medium-term
note to take advantage of potentially lower rates once the east
African nation has sold its debut Eurobond, it chief executive
said.

The company, which posted a 63 percent jump in 2013 pretax
profit to 1.48 billion shillings ($17.16 million), has already
secured regulatory approval for a seven-year, 20 billion
shilling corporate bond.

Feb 14, 2014

New beer tax curbs East African Breweries profit growth

NAIROBI, Feb 14 (Reuters) – East African Breweries Ltd
(EABL) said a duty imposed on its low-end Senator Keg
beer in Kenya had slashed sales volume of the brand, warning the
downturn in one of its top-selling products would help curb
profit growth this year.

The new tax imposed on Senator Keg, previously exempt from
excise duties, hiked its price 60 percent to 40 shillings and
cut sales 85 percent in the six months through December, forcing
EABL to come up with a response, such as the launch of new
bottled beer for the low-end of the market.

Feb 6, 2014

Barclays Kenya eyes rebound after costs hit 2013 profit

NAIROBI, Feb 6 (Reuters) – Barclays Bank of Kenya
reported a 14 percent drop in 2013 pretax profit because of
higher costs and provisions but expects a growth in lending and
deposits this year to help it meet profit goals, the chief
financial officer said.

The unit of Barclays Plc cut its dividend, a move
that contributed to a 6.4 percent fall in its share price to 16
shillings in the first hour of trading after the results.