Chris Kirubi Investments: Billionaire businessman Chris Kirubi is set to pay about 2.7 billion to acquire an additional 19.9 per cent stake in Centum. This purchase will see the business nearly acquire the majority stake in the company. It also means that Kirubi will own close to half of the company. To get to 49.9 per cent, Mr. Kirubi will be acquiring 132.4 million shares worth about Sh. 2.7 billion.
This comes after the Capital Markets Authority allowed Mr. Kirubi to increase his shareholding without having to make a mandatory takeover offer to other shareholders. Mr. Kirubi owns 28.94 per cent (192.56 million shares) of Centum and holds another 1.57 per cent (10.44 million) through his International Life House Ltd. This translates to about 30 per cent stake in the firm valued at Sh. 4.42 billion going by the Centum’s share price of Sh. 21.75 last Friday.
Mr. Kirubi will now buy the additional shares from other Centum shareholders selling their shares at the Nairobi Securities Exchange (NSE) over time. “This intended additional acquisition is my strong vote of confidence in the prospects and long-term strategic direction of the company,” said Mr. Kirubi, who is also the chairman at Centum Investments.
In a related statement, Centum Chief Executive James Mworia welcomed the move saying it would be a boost for the local market. “This is also good news for our stock market, especially coming at a time the Coronavirus pandemic has created uncertainties. It is an indicator that investors with a long-term outlook need not hold back from participating in the bourse,” he said.
Mr. Kirubi has positioned himself as one of the most shrewd investors on the NSE, raking billions of money through strategic buying and selling of shares.