The global fashion industry is a multi-trillion dollar industry that has remained largely untapped in Kenya. Jade Collections is among the few leading locally owned fashion businesses in Kenya with branches spread across the country. In this article, WoK brings you the story of Mzee Samuel Mburu – the tycoon who owns Jade Collections whose investments are said to be over Ksh 7 billion.
Mzee Samuel Mburu is a renowned Eldoret based businessman with interests in the fashion and real estate sectors. He established Jade Collections in 2000 together with his daughter Bernice Mburu who serves as the Chief Executive Officer. The business traces its roots in Nakuru at an exhibition table christened Millennium where they would display their products which were sourced from Dubai and South Africa.
In 2004, the duo set up a shop in Embassy House Nairobi from where they supplied fashion items to supermarkets. A year later, they closed down the shop in order to fully concentrate on the supply venture which they did for two years. In 2007 something unexpected happened that would forever change the course of their lives. They had ordered a 40 feet container of fashion items on behalf of a client who cancelled the order while the goods were in the high seas. They had nowhere to take all the clothes prompting them to open a shop hence the birth of Jade Collections. Today, Jade Collections is among the leading clothing line shops in the country with branches in Nairobi, Nakuru, Eldoret and Thika.
The billionaire is also big in real estate. He owns flats, apartments and business premises spread across different parts of Eldoret, Nakuru and Nairobi. He also owns hundreds of acres of land in various areas of the Rift Valley region. His Investments in land, property and real estate is estimated to be worth over Ksh 7 billion. According to media reports, one of the leading banks in the country has rented his entire building.
Family Court Battles
In June 2021, Samuel Mburu’s grandchildren Kevin Wakaimba and Ivan Wakaimba, sued him asking the court to compel the grandfather to include them in the share of the Ksh 7 billion empire. The two claimed that their grandfather started sidelining them after their father, Samuel Wakaimba, passed away in a road accident. They claimed that immediately after the death of their dad, the grandfather lodged an insurance claim and evicted them from their father’s 100 acre flower farm in the outskirts of Eldoret town.
Through their lawyer, Angu Kiptigin, they asked the court to compel the grandfather to give them a share of the wealth claiming they had university school fees arrears to be cleared. Kevin told the court he was forced to drop out of a University in South Africa where he was pursuing a degree course in Film Production. The younger brother, Ivan, claimed that he was sent home from an aviation school in Malindi where he was training to become a pilot. The case is yet to be determined by the court.