Empire

Dedicated to tracking Africa’s wealth, monitoring stories of people, platforms and processes shaping Africa’s financial fortunes. Put the other way round, this is where we follow the money.

American Investors are diving into Kenya

Recently, Kenya has seen the entrants of several United States private sector businesses despite the country experiencing economic difficulties. This shows that these companies are not scared of investing and are set to transform the business landscape of the country. 

This year Abbott, a leading US-based healthcare firm opened its second sub-Saharan Africa office in Nairobi after South Africa. This comes after the company in 2016, invested in a Kenyan manufacturer, acquiring several products developed for keeping children healthy. It is worthy to note that the company has since 2009, been providing nutrition solutions in the Kenyan market.

Similarly, Corteva  Agriscience, a major American agricultural chemical and seed company launched its regional operations in Kenya as it continues to expand its market reach and contribute to the growth of the region’s agriculture sector.

American Tower Corporation (ATC) set up regional offices in Kenya, acquired 723 towers from Telkom and also plans to acquire more towers. If this pulls through the company will become the biggest private tower operator in Kenya apart from Safaricom.

An American investment company, Emerging Capital Partners (ECP) also invested $34million to acquire a substantial majority in Artcaffé Group (Artcaffé), a restaurant and coffeehouse chain that operates fast-casual and casual concepts in greater Nairobi, Kenya.

Currently, Alternet Systems (ALYI) are planning to build Africa’s first electrical motorcycle plant under the ReVolt brand in Kenya. The deal, currently at industrial plant approval stage, when approved, will set the stage for the plant to assemble motorcycles in Kenya for sale across Africa,” a statement from America Chamber of commerce said.

In April this year, Mars Wrigley Confectionery Inc. opened a US$70 million manufacturing plant in Machakos County to create an additional 200 jobs. American Multinational global health solutions and insurance company Cigna also opened its Africa headquarters in Nairobi.

Microsoft in May 2019 launched one of two, Africa Development Centres in Nairobi. The company has invested up to US$100 million in both centres and is looking to increase engineers across both centres to 500 by 2023. In July 2019, Del monte announced investment worth US$5.8 million in a new state of the art packing facility that will expand its productivity as well as increase export capacity, creating 200 more jobs over.

Del Monte Kenya which is one of Kenya’s top exporters of the largest American employers in Kenya with a direct workforce of 7,000 and an additional 28,000 local jobs created indirectly by its operations.  

With a growing population in Kenya, a young talented workforce and a growing middle class, the country presents numerous opportunities for investment and growth. However, the country needs to deal with the issue of corruption which proses a major threat to the country. The issue of taxation is also an important cause of concern as the government needs to really consider the private sector when making decisions relating to tax as taxation is important to the growth of the country.

Kenya and the United States have over 50 years of partnership with current bilateral trade grossing over US$1 billion.