By Isaac Blessings
Most companies tend to employ old people in leadership positions to tap on their wealth of experience. However, in recent years we’ve witnessed a few young Kenyans taking up managerial and leadership positions proving that it is not always a matter of experience but knowledge and innovation.
In this article, WoK brings you the story of Mohamud Salat – the 36 year old at the helm of Hass petroleum limited, a company with over 1,700 employees and presence in nine countries across Africa.
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Mohamed Salat Background
Mohamud Salat was born in Ijara Village, Garissa County in the North Eastern region of Kenya. He attended Ijara primary school before joining Garissa high school still in the same region. He literally spent his entire childhood and teenage life in the area well used to spells of drought. In an interview with Business Daily, Salat recalled how the temperatures were hot back then which forced him together with his friends to dive into the Tana River despite the lurking danger of crocodiles mauling them to death.
He grew up in a humble background in a polygamous family of nine children – seven boys and two girls. Although the situations around his home were tough, he knew clearly that the only way to escape poverty was through education. He worked hard and passed his Kenya Certificate of Secondary Education (KCSE) and secured a slot to join the prestigious University of Nairobi.
This was his first time leaving the North Eastern region and coming to the Nairobi-based University to pursue a Bachelor’s degree in Economics. After completing his degree he enrolled for a Masters in Economic Policy Analysis at the same institution and graduated in November 2008. He was also involved in the SONU student leadership during his time at the university. The positions he held included the Chairman of North Eastern Province University Student Association (NEPUSA), Secretary General of the Muslim Student Association University of Nairobi (MSAUN) and the Clerk of the Student Organization of Nairobi University Parliament (SONU).
Just after graduating with his Masters in 2018, he secured a job at KPMG East Africa limited – a company that provides financial services in the Banking, Asset Management, insurance and Private Equity sectors. He joined the group as an accountant, a position he worked for two years until in 2010 when he was given the position of the Senior Advisor, Fragile and Conflicted States. The position entailed that he was the Senior Audit and Advisor in the International Development Advisory Service (IDAS). During his time at the position, he was involved in setting up a fully functional office in Hargeisa, Somaliland. He was also involved in the establishment of the company’s offices in Somalia, Ethiopia, Sudan and South Sudan. He later left the company to join Hass Petroleum in late 2013.
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Joining Hass Petroleum
Salat joined Hass Petroleum as the head of the Group internal audit. He worked in the position for one year and nine months before being promoted to the Chief Finance Officer position in 2014. In the position, he was responsible for the implementation of the group’s financial strategy, proactive risk management, treasury management, financial management and optimization of the company’s resources. He worked in the position for five years and 3 months before being appointed as the Group’s Chief Executive Officer (CEO) in January 2020, a position he holds to date.
Mohamud Salat has been in the helm of the company’s leadership leading over 1,700 employees handling the different Hass company products such as fuel, lubricants and Liquefied Petroleum Gas (LPG). The 36 year old oversees an investment worth over 300 million US dollars spread out across 10 countries in East, Central and Horn of Africa.
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