HF CEO Frank Ireri quits amidst falling profits

Mortgage financier Housing Finance (HF) is set to embark on a hunt for a new Group Managing Director (GMD) after its current boss Frank Ireri opted not to renew his contract paving way for the recruitment of a new manager.

The HF board chairman Steve Mainda in a letter sent to Capital Markets Authority (CMA) said Mr Ireri will not renew his current four-year contract that ends in March 2019.

The GMD will continue playing his role at the helm even as the mortgage financier kick-starts a recruitment process. Mr Mainda said the ten-month notice provides adequate time for HF to find a replacement and to manage the transition.

“The board’s Nomination and Governance Committee assisted by Mr Ireri will spearhead the search for a new Group Managing Director.

“We are confident that due to his early notification there is adequate time to identify a substantive replacement and facilitate a flawless transition,” he said.

Mr Ireri’s exit comes at a time when HF experienced a sharp decline of its after-tax profits.

In March, the firm reported a Sh. 126.22 million after-tax profit for the year ended December, representing an 86.07 per cent slide from the previous Sh. 905.83 million. The 2016 profit was a 24.32 per cent drop for the listed firm.

IMr Ireri’s remuneration rose marginally to Sh. 64.4 million in the year ended December from Sh. 64 million the previous year. At Sh. 64.4 million, his pay is equivalent to 51 per cent of HF’s net profit in the year ended December.

Mr Ireri’s compensation in the year ended December comprised a basic pay of Sh. 44.4 million or Sh. 3.7 million per month, gratuity (Sh. 13.7 million), and non-cash benefits (Sh. 6.1 million).

The pay items were unchanged from the previous year, save for non-cash benefits that rose from Sh. 5.8 million.

As a ratio of net earnings, Mr Ireri’s compensation is one of the highest among publicly traded firms that have disclosed their executives’ remuneration.