Friday, October 27, 2006

Jimnah Mbaru: Africa's Godfather of Investment Banking

Many Kenyans would relate the expression “being in the right place at the right time” with J. J. Kamotho. The Mathioya MP has always been in the right political party at the right time, which has guaranteed him consecutive parliamentary seats in the “Kamotho-hostile” Central Kenya.

No ones talks of Mr. Jimnah Mbaru or—if you would like—the Kenyan Warren Buffet. The gentleman has excelled at investment banking, and has transformed the Nairobi Stock Exchange from an exclusive elite club to a money machine for the masses.

Mr. Mbaru has succeeded at the backdrop of successive problems with Kenya’s political class. For instance, the 1980s saw Moi’s administration takeover Mbaru’s banks in the name of streamlining the banking industry. Those actions were undertaken by non other than Professor George Saitoti, the then Minister of Finance. The disappointed Mbaru kept his cool and concentrated on nurturing Dyer and Blair Stockbrokers LTD. He had just acquired the firm from the Kenya Commercial Bank at a cost of KShs. 400,000. The rest is an epic success story: The little Dyer and Blair Company is now a "billion-shilling" investment banking business.

In 2002 general elections, Mbaru tried to apply his investment banking know-how to bring some common sense to Kenya’s political scene. But who was Mbaru to join Kenya’s well knitted political class? His candidacy was snatched and given to one of their own. That event turned to be a déjà vu all again. The disappointed Mbaru kept his cool and went back to his Dyer and Blair Investment Bank. He soon became the NSE chairman. The bourse has broken several records during his tenure.

Jimnah Mbaru: Africa’s own Godfather of Investment Banking and another reason to Kujivunia kuwa mkenya.

24 comments:

Anonymous said...

i beg to differ abou jimnah mbaru - i think while he has done alot for the stock exchnage i think most of what he has done is based on he's personall benefit at a pace of which he presonally can acrue the most benefit - ther is much moe than can be done @ the stock exchange thats not been done - as for innovation in iinvestment banking i think u need to look at what people have done outside kenya - in south africa,nigeria(considering the environment there those guys are on another level), zimbabwe even zambia - africas godfather of investment banking - nope.

Anonymous said...

alot of the innovations that we think are new like ATS abd CDSC have been in place in nigeria for quite a while

http://www.nigeriabusinessinfo.com/nse

Ssebunge said...

Its unlikely that Jimnah Mbaru was in bad books when he bought D & B from KCB for a song. That said, there is nothing unusual with the opening up of the NSE to the masses. Its happening the world over in this era of discount online brokers. Call it the internet super highway revolution. With so much liquidity, credit and capital inflows into Kenya, this was bound to happen with/without regime change.

coldtusker said...

"Africa" - LOL....

There are many more who have done more...

BTW, Warren Buffett is NOT an Investment Banker... even though he "ran" Salomon Brothers for a wee bit...

The Alpha Quadrant said...

i still think Jimnah Mbaru would do better than Maina Kamande in terms of development.

Anonymous said...

Jimnah Mbaru has done alot to develop the capital markets in the region.Oh yes has also helped to nurture investment banking in the country, though,gradually.He has done alot to deepen the nairobi stock exchange and for that he deserves kudos.The problem with us is that we have a low opinion of ourselves such that when one stands out to be counted, the omly thing we do is to bring them down and talk ill.hey, tujivunie!

CHARLES said...

Granted the gentleman has done a lot. However, if you operate in the capital markets in kenya, you mwill realize that the NSE is a private members club. How do you explain that Old Mutual with a bid almost double the size of the second bidder did not get the much coveted seat?

goldstax said...

aaaaahh the old mutual question! got knocked out on a technical issue. and more so when you say the stock market is ran by a private members club and it should be diversified, the fat cat in that club is ...old mutual.. so! Jimnah has done what needed to be done.. and achieved more than that.. someone says the environment has presented itself....nope! otherwise uganda, tanzania and some of our other good neighbours would be MILES AHEAD if it were for the environment.. and yes.. small fish (me for example) have made a shilling or two... thanx to Mbaru

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