Plans are underway to acquire Consolidated Bank by senior political office holders.
According to sources, president William Ruto allies seek to acquire majority shares at the loss-making Koinange-Street-headquartered bank as the head of state seeks to build a financial muscle and base equivalent to that of his predecessor, Uhuru Kenyatta whose family owns NCBA Group.
Those pushing for the idea to invest in the banking sector are Oscar Sudi and a number of businessmen and politicians surrounding the presidency.
Late president Daniel Arap Moi also had ownership shares in Trans National Bank now Access Bank.
Mwai Kibaki was also associated with Continental Bank.
Insiders revealed that Consolidated Bank is among government agencies lined up for sale in line with demands by the International Monetary Fund.
The lender recorded a Sh157 million half-year loss in the six months ended June 2022, sinking deeper into the red, and thus is ripe for disposal.
The National Treasury holds 93.4pc stake in the bank having converted Sh1.6 billion debt in the lender into shares.
And the person seeking partners to team up with Ruto allies in acquiring Consolidated Bank is Asian businessman Narendra Raval alias Guru who is worth over $500 million.
Described as an industrialist, entrepreneur and philanthropist, Raval who serves as the executive chairman of the Devki Group of Companies which is a conglomerate in East Africa that manufactures steel, aluminium and cement was a close associate of Uhuru but has since switched sides after Ruto assumed power.
There are reports, during the hearing of Raila Odinga’s petition challenging Ruto’s victory, the then president-elect made a call to Raval who instantly delivered Sh100 million to pay the lawyers representing him.
Indeed, Ruto demonstrated his closeness to Raval when he graced the commissioning of Devki Steel Mills in Kwale two weeks ago.
Consolidated Bank is fully owned by the government with the majority shareholding in the bank (85.8%) held by the National Treasury.
It is a medium-sized financial services provider, focusing on meeting the banking needs of small and medium-sized enterprises.
It is among agencies that include Kenya Tourism Development Corporation, Development Bank of Kenya, Kenya Pipeline and Kenya Ports Authority listed for privatisation.
Two weeks ago, the bank appointed former Kenya Commercial Bank director for mortgage business Sam Muturi as the new chief executive officer.
Muturi took over from Japheth Kisilu who has been holding the position in an acting capacity.
Kisilu is the chief commercial officer of Consolidated Bank.
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