Chris Kirubi gets back 100 percent control of Haco

Kenyan businessman and Centum Investments single largest shareholder, Chris Kirubi has taken back 100 percent control of Haco Tiger Brands East Africa. This comes after he acquired  Johannesburg-based Tiger Brands’ 51 percent stake in the fast moving consumer goods manufacturer. He said that one of the reasons for buying back of the stakes is due his immense love for the company. Kirubi sold the 51 percent stake to Johannesburg based Tiger Brands in 2008 for about KSh363 million ($3.57million).

“I like Haco Industries too much, I also believe in its potential,” Dr Kirubi told Capital FM Business.

According to reports, Kirubi’s decision to buy the stake was due to a clash of opinion.  In the past two, there has been many differences of opinion in the strategic direction of the business between Tiger Brands and Haco. In 2015, a KSh845 million ($830 million) accounting fraud of pulling forward sales and falsification of stocks was discovered at Haco this affected the multinational’s consolidated earnings. 

Tiger Brands Announcement from JSE Trading courtesy of Nutcracker Technologies;

“There was also an issue that Haco industries has been intending to develop and strengthen its own brand. This move would only be successfully implemented if Haco is a stand-alone company,” Haco Industries Managing Director Peter Kang’ethe told CapitalFm.

Tiger said the entrenched partnerships that Haco has developed over the years have made it difficult to boost the uptake of its brands, including Purity (baby food), Ingram’s (personal care) and Tastic (cereals) in East Africa.

Mr Kirubi, on the other hand, believes in the current model that has helped Haco grow since its establishment in the early 1970s, prompting him to buy out Tiger Brands to maintain the status quo.

Following the acquisition, Haco is now expected to drop the Tiger Brands name that it acquired from the multinational.