Baloobhai Patel: The Silent Billionaire Who Controls Majority Stake In NSE Listed Companies

According to a report released in 2021 by Knight Frank, Kenya has a total of 42 billionaires who are worth more than Ksh 3 billion. Most of these individuals are either popular politicians or renowned businessmen owning companies listed in the Nairobi Stock Exchange (NSE).

However there is this one silent billionaire whom little is known about but controls major stakes in top companies listed in the NSE. In this article, WoK goes behind the scenes to bring you the story of billionaire Baloobhai Patel.

The Business genius

Baloobhai Patel is a Kenyan Indian businessman and investor. He was born in 1938 in the slums of Mathare where he spent the better part of his early life. He joined the business world in 1964 where he founded Transworld Safaris Limited – a tours and travel company which owns and operates a large fleet of custom-built safari minibuses, 4 wheel drive vehicles and hot air balloons.

The company brings groups of European tourists to Kenya and arranges activities such as bird watching safaris, game drives in different national parks, deep sea fishing, mountain climbing and cultural education among many others. He serves as the founder and managing director (MD) of the company which is one of the oldest tours and travel companies with over 30 years of experience in the field.

Also Read: Kenyans Of Indian Origin Who Control The Economy Of Kenya 

Shares and Investments

Apart from running the tours and travel company, Patel has heavily invested in NSE. He primarily invests in blue chip stocks that pay regular dividends with a tradition of steady appreciation in stock price. The strategy he uses is investing when the stock prices fall and rarely liquidates his stakes but lets it appreciate with time. He has investments in companies in different sectors including media, manufacturing, construction, telecommunication, banking and insurance. Patel is the single largest shareholder of investment and gas manufacturing firm Carbacid where he controls a majority 49.9 percent stake. 

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He has a 20 percent stake in Pan Africa Holdings where he serves as a non-executive director, 1.3 percent in Bamburi cement, 0.75 percent in Centum Investments, 0.12 percent in Co-operative bank and 0.15 percent in ABSA Bank (Formerly Barclays Bank). His investments at the Nairobi Securities Exchange (NSE) are done through his investment vehicle known as Aksaya Investments LLP. The 83 year old has notable shares in other different companies such as Diamond Trust Bank (DTB), Safaricom, Sankara Hotel and Pan Africa Insurance. His investments and shares in public listed companies stands at Ksh 5 billion as of 2022.