By Mfonobong Nsehe*
The Commercial Bank of Africa (CBA), a leading Kenyan commercial bank majority-owned by the Kenyatta family, is looking to acquire a stake in a distressed lender in the Democratic Republic of Congo.
According to a report by Kenya’s Business Daily newspaper, CBA has written to the Central Bank of the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) asking to participate in the re-capitalization of Banque Internationale Pour l’Afrique au Congo (BIAC), after the lender was placed under statutory management in May after it failed to access new credit lines from the regulator.
The Kenyatta family whose most recognizable member is Uhuru Kenyatta, the current President of Kenya, has been expanding its empire outside the country. CBA already has subsidiaries in Tanzania and Uganda. Last year Brookside, the dairy company the family controls, acquired Ugandan milk processor Sameer Agriculture and Livestock Limited; the company is also looking to establish a milk processing plant in Nigeria.
Apart from its banking and dairy assets, the Kenyatta family ownHeritage Hotels – a collection of luxury beach hotels, golf resorts and safari camps. The family is also Kenya’s largest landowner, owning more than 500,000 acres of prime land across the country. They are currently developing a new city on an 11,576 acre-parcel of land they own in Ruiru Municipality, Kiambu County, just outside Nairobi.