Kenyan Tycoons Who Lost Properties Worth Billions To Auctioneers

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Kenyan Tycoons Who Lost Properties Worth Billions To Auctioneers
Tycoons Who Have Been Trouble With Auctioneers Photo/Courtesy

By Prudence Minayo

Doing business in Kenya can be a perilous affair especially if you are not able to service bank loans. Most times, creditors turn to overzealous auctioneers when one fails to meet their financial obligations. A number of business tycoons in Kenya have fallen victim to the wrath of creditors.

Here are the tycoons who have lost their properties to auctioneers between 2020 to date as compiled by WoK.

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Ali Punjani 

Ali Punjani’s palatial home in Nyali was put up for auction by the National Bank of Kenya over accrued debts amounting Sh17 billion. The home comprises eight en suite bedrooms, a swimming pool and a servants quarters. 

Mr. Punjani has previously been linked to illegal drugs trade. His house sparked interest in 2019 when it was reported police officers spent 20 hours attempting to break in through the fort. They were looking for the tycoon after he was linked to the illicit trade of drug trafficking. He is reportedly a close friend to the Akasha brothers, Baktasha and Ibrahim who are cooling their heels in a US maximum prison. 

Atul Shah 

Atul Shah of Nakumatt holdings lost the leading retailer after running into debts worth billions. At the height of its prosperity, Nakumatt operated a chain of supermarkets all over Kenya and in the larger East African region. 

Atul’s mansion in the prestigious Lavington Estate was put on sale following a loan with a local commercial bank. KCB also sold his Industrial areas property to Furniture Palace for Sh1.04 billion according to Business Daily Africa. 

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William Guda Osewe 

K’Osewe Ranalo is a famed restaurant known for its traditional Kenyan cuisine and owned by William Osewe. In a previous interview, the restauranteur stated that his troubles began when he was shot and left for dead. The resulting recuperation cost him a lot of money and his marriage also went south. 

Ranalo Foods’ Upper Hill branch closed in July 2020 following the sale of items from the restaurant by Bensure Auctioneers. A prime property linked to K’Osewe was in October 2021 put on sale over Sh330 million loan owed to Guaranty Trust bank. The five-storey property consisted of residential and commercial apartments in South C.

Also Read: K’Osewe Ranalo Foods Owner William Guda Osewe, Forced To Wear Diapers, Auctioneers, Wife & Children

Manu Chandaria 

Kaluworks Limited, owned by Manu Chandaria, is a big manufacturer of aluminium utensils and roofing sheets. The firm owed large amounts to a number of banks including NCBA, NIC bank and I&M bank. Kaluworks’ woes began in 2012 when they issued a Sh1 billion bond with a 7-years tenure to fund its plans for expansion. This put their debt burden at Sh4.6 billion by the end of 2012.

In June 2021, the company was put under receivership. 

Balminder Singh Sochi 

Balminder is making it big in the chili business. Prior to this, he owned and operated Kisumu Engineering works Limited. The firm offered services to a number of sugar mills in Western and Nyanza region. However, this business hit the rocks following the financial troubles of various sugar mills. He closed shop and auctioned the company on social media. 

Dr. Thuo Mathenge 

Thuo Mathenge is a veteran Nyeri politician. He unsuccessfully vied for the Nyeri gubernatorial seat in 2013 and was barred from vying in 2017 following the questioning of his academic credentials. 

Graham Investment auctioneers put out an advert for his properties which included four agricultural lands and one commercial property. The commercial property housed his Brade Gate Poultry Industries and Brade Gate chicken, a supermarket and a restaurant among others. The Agricultural land included a 1.6 acre plot, an unoccupied 14-acre plot and a vacant 2-acre plot. 

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