Kenyan CEOs Who Steered Loss Making Companies To Profitability

Taking charge of multi-billion businesses is always not a walk in the park. More often than not, it requires enough experience in various fields such as finance, accounting and the basic knowledge of the firm’s operations.

Despite the fact that CEOs can be seen as people riding on a soft life, the truth is that a majority of them lead a busy life and may not even have time for leisure activities. Being a successful CEO also requires a balance in various leadership models to propel a company to success.

Basically, a business is always faced with two fates; profit and loss. The latter is the worst thing that can happen to any firm as it always leads to shareholders’ anxiety and audit queries. It is however not always the end of the business because it is possible to make a turnaround from loss to profit. This article will feature some Kenyan CEOs who turned companies from loss to profit.

Engineer Rosemary Oduor – Kenya Power

Engineer Rosemary Oduor. [Photo|Courtesy]

She is the current CEO of state corporation Kenya Power and Lightning Company. The 55 year old is an ambitious leader whose raft of changes turned the power distributor from a 7.03 Bn loss in 2020 to a pretax profit of 8.2 Bn by the end of 2021. The change of fortunes was attributed to a reduction in operating costs, payment of arrears, system efficiency and an increment of sales.

Read Also: Top 20 Kenya Power And Lighting Company Major Shareholders As At 30th June 2021

Oduor holds a bachelor’s degree in electrical and communication technology from Moi University and a Masters in Business Administration (MBA) in operations, management and supervision from University of Nairobi. She joined Kenya Power in early ’90s and worked as a regional manager of the firm.

Patrick Nyaga – CIC Group 

Patrick Nyaga. [Photo|Courtesy]

The current CEO of CIC Insurance Ltd, Patrick Nyaga has seen both loss and profit period. In the year ended 2021, the underwriter made a profit of 668 million from a loss of 297 million in 2020. Further, the company which has subsidiaries in Uganda, South Sudan and Malawi registered an increase in total income from 16.8 Bn to 19.2 Bn over the said period.

Read Also: Resolution Insurance: Once Buoyant Firm, Now On The Verge of Collapse

Nyaga took over as the CEO in June 2020 and has a wide experience in finance, audit and strategy. He previously worked at Cooperative Bank as the head of strategy and finance. He holds an undergraduate degree of commerce in accounting and a Masters in Business Administration (MBA) from Strathmore Business School.

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James Mwangi – Equity Bank  

The serial entrepreneur is among the wealthiest personalities in Kenya. He is also a philanthropist and the CEO of Equity Bank which has grown tentacles in the Eastern Africa market.

Kenyan CEOs Who Steered Loss Making Companies Into Profitability
James Mwangi. [Photo|]
Dr. Mwangi is a perfect definition of the proverbial pauper to prince who was brought up by a single mother in Murang’a and became the first person in his village to graduate from the university.

Mwangi holds a bachelor’s of commerce degree, accounting option from University of Nairobi and attended an advanced management course at the IESE Business School in Barcelona, Spain.

In 1991, when Mwangi took over Equity Bank then known as Equity Building Society, it was headed to the headwinds. The regulator even threatened to close down the institution which was in whimpers. The firm had Ksh 22 million in deposits, loan book balance of Ksh 9 million and loses of Ksh 33 million.

However, through the leadership of Mwangi, the firm steadily reestablished itself by advocating for financial inclusion of the vast population of Kenyans who did not access banking services. In 2004, Equity bank was licensed and in 2006 it was listed in the Nairobi Stock Exchange market. In 2021, the lender posted an impressive Ksh 40.1 Bn profit after tax.

Joshua Oigara – Transformation of National Bank

Joshua Oigara in a past photo [Photo|Courtesy]

When the name Joshua Oigara is mentioned, many people think about Kenya Commercial Bank. However, the CEO has all the reasons to take credit for National Bank of Kenya’s (NBK) turnaround from loss to profit. In fact, KCB acquired the troubled NBK through a share swap in 2019 when the latter was sinking in a Ksh 381.3 million loss.

Read also: KCB CEO Joshua Oigara Biography, Age and Family, Education, Positions, Salary and Net Worth

There was a lot of resistance when KCB pumped in billions of shillings towards bringing NBK back to life. However, according to Oigara, there was an opportunity in acquisition of NBK because of the thousands of customers who banked with it.

We were looking at National Bank in terms of the numbers, branches, customers and system models and decided that it would be a good opportunity for KCB to grow,” said Oigara as quoted by Business Today.

Currently, NBK a subsidiary of KCB, has been resuscitated back to life and posted a ksh 1.1 Bn profit in 2021.