Jonathan Jackson is a billionaire businessman and the owner of The Lordship Group – a real estate company which has been in operation for 30 years, in Kenya, the Czech Republic and Turkey.
He is the founder of the Jonathan Jackson Foundation – a not for profit, non-government organisation that scales up community projects and ensures tangible, positive impact and accountability on the ground for the community, its partners and stakeholders. The foundation focuses on sports – football and basketball, jobs and training and reform and rehabilitation.
Jackson is behind the 88 Nairobi Condominium Tower, a 44-storey residential skyscraper under construction in the Upper Hill.
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Here is the real estate mogul’s success story as told by WoK.
Background & Education
The 61-year-old was raised in Mosoriot town, Nandi County. His father was an AIC missionary teacher.
He attended St Andrew’s Turi before proceeding to the UK where he pursued Business Management at London South Park University.
Jackson lived and worked in Europe for 20 years dealing in real estate under his company The Lordship Group. He later returned to Kenya and has since developed properties in Nairobi and Naivasha.
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He founded LORDSHIP in 1989 and has led the group from inception to its current prominence in Central Eastern Europe and Kenya with a value of over $1 billion (Ksh115 billion) mixed-use space of over 600,000m2 (6 million square feet).
In Prague, Czech Republic, Jackson gained firsthand experience of the CEE region’s transformation and the growth of its property development and investment markets from a frontier economy after the fall of Communism to a significant contributor to the European economy today.
The businessman has spent his entire career in real estate development, including UK experience with both Tarmac and London & Edinburgh Trust, prior to moving to Prague and establishing LORDSHIP.
The business mogul has since developed Karen Hills, a 64-acre residential development, in Nairobi. He is behind the 88 Nairobi Condominium Tower, a 44-storey residential skyscraper under construction in the Upper Hill.
He established the Jonathan Jackson Foundation and in February 2018, assumed the role of Trustee and Chairman. The goal of foundation is to offer significant impact in disadvantaged communities by contributing to job creation and sustainable income generating initiatives.
“I am committed to using my track record and experience in commercial enterprise both locally and internationally to make a difference to the lives of the disadvantaged people of Nairobi especially women and youth because their success is society’s success for generations to come,” Jackson says.
“The core values of the Jonathan Jackson Foundation stem from my commitment to making real change in Nairobi by empowering the Kenyan people through education and training. The organisation also works with different community groups who are actively making a change for the better and battling social ills, especially in areas of sexual and gender-based violence, drugs and substance abuse and criminal reform,” says the developer.
Jackson is passionate about empowerment and has been involved in charity all around the world. He has even built schools in Haiti.
“We started this (the foundation) with an aim to grow and attract money from larger agencies. This we can use to empower our communities. I was born and raised in Eldoret and have managed to establish a solid business footprint in both Africa and Europe. Now that I am living and doing business in Nairobi, I know how important economic empowerment is to this and the next generation,” he says.
Jackson acquired Nairobi City Stars through the foundation at a time when the club was struggling. He steered the club to promotion into the Kenya Premier League (KPL) and has since maintained its status as one of the top clubs in the country.
The foundation also recruited players out of the Chapa Dimba tournament, a national football tournament for male and female youth aged between 16 and 20 years.
“There is so much talent in Kenya. If only it were harnessed when the players are still young- they could be superstars by now!”
According to previous report by Business Daily, Jackson revealed that the foundation had set out to help over 3,300 underprivileged youths from Nairobi’s informal settlements.
“My goal for the foundation is to offer significant impact in disadvantaged communities by contributing to job creation and sustainable income-generating initiatives. I am committed to using my track record and experience in commercial enterprise both locally and internationally to make a difference to the lives of the disadvantaged people of Nairobi, especially women and youth because their success is society’s success for generations to come.”
He also plans to start a training centre for the youth.
“The government-run centres are mainly badly managed. The training is poor, and graduates are not usually assured of getting a job. If you travel and come back to Kenya, you realise that, for the construction industry for example, the workmanship here is poor,” He said.
During an interview with Business Daily, Jackson revealed that he would like to live in a variety of houses.
“I plan to have a penthouse in our current development— 88 Nairobi. I’m also looking to build a house near a beach and a house in a nature reserve and to be able to move between these three locations is my dream.
“Now I live in a small apartment in Nairobi’s Upperhill. People say I’m a workaholic so I’m never in the apartment much,” he said at the time.
Jackson has been referred to often as a billionaire mogul, however, he keeps a low and modest Profile.
“Modest? I wouldn’t say modest. Let’s put it this way, I don’t count my money or what I’m worth. (Pause) I have just Googled myself and I have a competitor, an American actor with my name. But hey, generally I’m the type who likes to keep behind. But last year my team said I needed to be more visible and talk about my foundation more, that people needed to know who I was. I only recently got on Instagram,” he says.
88 Nairobi Condominium Tower
The 44-storey apartments tower located in Nairobi’s Upper Hill area will be among the tallest residential skyscrapers in Africa on completion.
The Ksh5 billion project (exclusive of the cost of land and land permits) will be financed through equity, debts and sales of spaces.
The 88 the upcoming Hilton Tower will be the first Condominiums in Kenya.
During its unveiling, Jackson stated that the project is targeting CEOs, business people and professionals in the legal, medical and financial sectors.
“Kenya is increasingly becoming the hub of investment in the sub-Saharan Africa. Lordship Africa is responding to this trend and the resultant demand for quality residential units,” said Jackson.
Cost of Owning a Condo
Interest buyers will have to part with Ksh11.5 million and Ksh35 million for one-bedroom and two-bedroom units respectively.
The 88 Nairobi Condominium apartments will cost up to Ksh480,000 a month to rent.