Foreigners Who Have Invested In Multi-Billion Businesses In Kenya 

By Isaac Blessings

Kenya is one of the fastest growing economies in Africa and a magnet for foreign investors. This is attributable to an emerging middle class and increased consumption for high value goods and services. Being the most advanced economy in the region, foreigners have not been left out in setting shop in the country. 

WoK brings you the  list of foreign investors who have heavily invested in the country.

Robin Duan Wei

Robin Duan Wei is a renowned Chinese investor and businessman. He made an entry into the Kenyan market after acquiring 85 percent shares of Choice Microfinance Bank Limited (Choice MFB). The billionaire acquired the shares through his company Wakanda Network Limited effective October 22nd 2021. The MFB has its head office and one branch both located in the outskirts of Nairobi in Ongata Rongai, Kajiado County. The bank has been operational since 2009 and is categorized as a small microfinance bank with a market share of below 1 percent of the microfinance banking sector as of October 31st 2021 as reported by Wei is a successful entrepreneur who is also the founder of Mobvista Inc – a digital advertising company listed at the Hong Kong Exchange and Clearing Limited with a market capitalization of Ksh 1.3 trillion as of August 31st 2021.

Also Read: Top Ten Banks Offering The Cheapest Loans In Kenya

Ricardo Badoer

Ricardo Badoer is a Swedish Dubai-based billionaire and founder of Badoer Investment Limited. The billionaire joined the Kenyan Market in October 2018 after buying Wazito FC – a football club playing in the Kenyan Premier League. It is said that he paid over Ksh 80 million to take over the club from its founder Solomon Alubala. Since taking over Wazito FC, the billionaire has heavily invested in the club buying some of the best players and experienced coaches in the country. He is also the owner of CD Ursaria – a football club that plays in the Spanish fifth tier. Apart from football, he has interests in the banking, real estate and media industries. He holds a majority of shares at Sumac Microfinance Bank in Kenya and Hakika bank in Tanzania where is among the board of directors.

The club has been financially struggling in the recent past. 

Also Read: The Men Who Own Kenya’s Top Football Clubs

Richard Branson

Richard Branson is a British billionaire and the Virgin Atlantic president. He entered the Kenyan market through Mahali Mzuri Safari Camp located inside the Maasai Mara Game reserve. The luxurious hotel has 12 well-furnished modern tents that can accommodate up to 2 adults which brings it to a total of around 24 guests at any given time. According to the details provided in the hotel’s website, the hotel charges Ksh 107,400 per person for a night during low seasons and Ksh 172,750 per person during the peak seasons and Ksh 161,950 for people who love extra activities such as game drives.

Michael Spencer

Michael Spencer is a renowned British entrepreneur and philanthropist. The billionaire made his entry to Kenyan market through the Sarai House hotel – a lodge in Borana Conservancy in Laikipia County. The hotel sits on a 250-acre piece of land that is covered by indigenous forests, hills and breathtaking plains. According to a report by UK’s Sunday Times done in 2016, spending a night at the facility will cost you Ksh 1.16 million and you are required to stay there for more than three days so the least amount you can pay is around Ksh 3.48 million. You are also required to answer a few personal questions before being allowed to the premises.

Stephen Jennings

Stephen Jennings is another billionaire who has found Kenya a fertile ground to put his money through – Rendeavour Group which has invested heavily in Tatu city. The company is tasked in developing a 5,000 acre Special Economic Zone (SEZ) in the futuristic modern city. The Tatu city project comprises a shopping district, schools, offices, homes, industrial area and recreational space. Currently, over 60 businesses are fully operational, 5,000 homes are under development and two schools were unveiled namely – Nova Pioneer and Crawford International which are able to educate over 3,000 students.

Also Read: Northlands: Inside the Imposing Kshs 500 Billion City Owned By The Kenyatta Family

Mukesh Ambani

Mukesh Ambani is one of the richest men in India and a renowned business tycoon. He entered the Kenyan market through his companies – Reliance Industries and Delta Corp East Africa Limited (DCEAL). The company builds and sells commercial properties in the country including the 21-storey twin-tower Delta Corner Tower which is situated in Westlands, Nairobi. He sold the building in 2014 to consultancy firm PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC). He also constructed and sold the University of Nairobi Staff Pension Scheme for Ksh 4 billion as reported by

Flavio Briatore

Flavio Briatore is an Ex-Formula one boss and renowned entrepreneur. He is the owner of Billionaire Resort in Malindi. The resort is a high-end facility that is mostly visited by the Super-rich who enjoy the hotel’s features. The luxurious hotel offers great services and a number of activities such as visiting marine parks and national reserves. According to the hotel’s website, spending a night in one of the luxurious villas will cost you up to Ksh 38,000 per person. This cost may vary depending on the time and season.

Also Read: Billionaires Landlords Who Built Nairobi City

Jay Kimmelman

Jay Kimmelman together with his wife Shannon May are the founders and owners of Bridge International Academies. The group of Schools is spread across different countries in the world and has so far invested close to Ksh 10 billion in the education sector. In Kenya, the institution has branches in Rongai, Kabiria, Dandora, Gachie, Mukuru Kwa Njenga, Kiambio, Katina and Ngumba. The academy is funded by Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg, Microsoft founder Bill Gates and the Nigerian Sovereign Wealth Fund.

Junjie Zhou

Junjie Zhou is a Chinese billionaire with interests mainly in the digital sector. He entered the Kenyan market through his company – Opay Digital Services which owns a chain of mobile loaning apps such as iPesa, Okash, Kashway and Credit Hela. Zhou was the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of Opera mini and founder of Grindr – a company he later sold for Ksh 66 billion.

Franco Rosso

Franco Rosso closes for us the list of the top ten Foreign investors who have heavily invested in Kenya. He owns the famous Malindi Dream Garden, Diamonds Dream of Africa and Sandies Tropical Village hotels in Malindi. He is also behind a chain of luxurious beach resorts in different African countries, Italy and Switzerland. According to the Malindi Dream Garden hotel website, spending a night at the facility will cost you up to Ksh 20,000 per person.