Kenya
The Jamhuri Report 31-Oct
Top 3 Company Headlines 
Nakumatt files for bankruptcy protection (Business Live 31-Oct
M-kopa solar secures Sh8.2bn debt for expansion (Capital Fm 10-Oct)
Coca Cola to invest Sh10bn (Business Today 24-Oct)
Top 3 Macro Headlines 
Kenyatta wins disputed election re-run (BBC 30-Oct
Inflation at 5.72% - lowest in 17 months (Reuters 31-Oct)
IMF 2017 growth forecast down to 5% (Bloomberg 16-Oct)
The Jamhuri’s View  
Kenyatta won 98% of the vote with a turnout under 39%.Voting was suspended in 25 opposition stronghold constituencies. Odinga had boycotted and his bid to delay the re-run fell apart. He has rejected the defeat and the opposition leaders actions in the coming weeks will determine Kenya’s path. Growth will rise if the political environment returns to normal. Instability continues to restrict the economy. 
Fun Fact: The earliest human footprints, dated around 1.51 million years ago, were found in Kenya in 2009 (Guardian)


The Jamhuri Report 30-Sep-2017
Top 3 Company Headlines 
Nakumatt supermarket to merge with Tutskys (Reuters 18-Sep)   
Bidco opens Sh2bn detergent factory (Daily Nation 30-Sep
M-Fanisi takes 50k new online members (Business Daily 29-Sep)
Top 3 Macro and Risk Headlines  
Supreme Court annuls election (BBC 01-Sep)
Y-O-Y Q2 GDP growth slows to 5% (Kenya National Bureau of Statistics 29-Sep
Central Bank push for interest cap repeal (East African 14-Sep)
The Jamhuri’s View 
The Supreme Court’s decision was a surprise . The Jamhuri believes it is a positive sign of integrity. A second election is due on 26-Oct. Opposition leader Odinga refuses to take part unless changes are made to the election process. Investors are hesitating and fears of large scale election violence are rising. This threatens to further slow the economy.
Fun Fact: Swahili and English are Kenya’s official languages, but there are another 66 spoken across the country 


The Jamhuri Report 31-Aug-2017
Top 3 Company Headlines 
StanChart finds rate cap loophole, will lend Sh10bn (Standard Media 28-Aug)
Kwale Titanium rebounds to Sh1.71bn profit (Daily Nation 28-Aug)
Kansai Paint buys Sadolin Group for Sh10bn (KBR 23-Aug)
Top 3 Macro and Risk Headlines  
Kenyatta wins election (African Business Central 12-Aug
Annual growth projection down to 4.9% (FocusEconomics 22-Aug)  
India trade relations boosted with tax agreement (Standard Media 11-Aug
The Jamhuri’s View 
Violence was lower than around previous elections. Opposition leader Odinga has challenged result at the High Court but the Jamhuri expects Kenyatta to remain president. GDP growth is now projected at 4.9%, down 0.6% on the World Bank's April forecast. Kenyatta has a big task ahead amid drought, public debt, and interest rate cap issues.
The banking sector continues to struggle. Revenue generated by 13 microfinance banks fell 27%, making a loss of Sh377m, amid cost increases. 
Fun Fact: Kenya has placed a ban on plastic bags and anyone found with them could face a $38,000 fine or up to 4 years imprisonment (BBC 28-Aug)


The Jamhuri Report 31-Jul-2017
Top 3 Company Headlines   
Barclays Bank Kenya to shut 7 branches (Reuters 03-Jul
East African Breweries net profit rises 6%  (Standard Media 28-Jul)   
CIC insurance group H1 profits rise 14% (Business Daily 28-Jul)
Top 3 Macro and Risk Headlines  
Polls indicate narrow election (Bloomberg 23-Jul)
Trade disputes committee to be set up with Tanzania (The Citizen 26-Jul)
Joint African cruise tourism plan proposed (Business Daily 05-Jul)
The Jamhuri’s View 
A narrow election will increase unrest and uncertainty. Opposition candidate Odinga warned he won’t concede defeat if the vote is not credible. This should heighten investor concerns. 
While banks struggle with the interest rate cap, other businesses are succeeding despite the tough environment of high inflation and excise duties. Further success for firms and industries may depend on election results and unrest.
Fun Fact: Kenyans of Asian descent to become nation's 44th tribe (Citizen TV 22-Jul)


The Jamhuri Report 30-Jun-2017
Top 3 Company Headlines   
Diageo plan Sh15b brewery plant (Standard Media 29-Jun)
Central Bank extends receivership of Imperial Bank (Reuters 23-Jun
Honda (HMC:NYSE) to use local materials for motorcycles (Standard Media 25-Jun
Top 3 Macro and Risk Headlines 
Gambling tax raised to 35% (Reuters 21-Jun)
Tourism to grow 6% annually (Business Daily 21-Jun)  
Tea industry in crisis  (BBC 09-Jun)
The Jamhuri’s View  
A number of industries are struggling. Tourism growth is encouraging but the sector is still recovering from the fallout of terrorist attacks in recent years. The Jamhuri questions the wisdom of increasing taxes on successful industries. 
An underperforming economy is an opportunity for foreign investors. Diageo and Honda are prime examples.
Fun Fact: Kenya & NASA will work together to boost food security by providing information on crop types, weather, and agricultural insurance (Capital fm 29-Jun)


The Jamhuri Report 31-May-2017
Top 3 Company Headlines   
Volvo expands truck building (Bloomberg 19-May)
Equity Bank (EQTY:NR) closes South-Sudan branches (Reuters 24-May)
President signs deal with Huawei (Cajnews 28-May)
Top 3 Macro and Risk Headlines
Major banks report Q1 fall in profit (Bloomberg 25-May)
Interest rate cap kept at 10% (Reuters-29 May)
$3.3bn Chinese-backed railway project (ABC News 30-May)
The Jamhuri’s View
The cap explains fall in bank profit. The closing of 7/12 of Equity’s branches comes after Sudan’s ongoing violence and economic slowdown. Banks are struggling in the current climate.  
The Huawei deal will provide employment and build infrastructure for govt cloud services. Volvo cite good infrastructure as key to their decision. Infrastructure remains a vital attraction for Kenya.
Fun Fact: The first African woman to win the Nobel Prize Price was Kenyan environmentalist Professor Maathai in 2004 (Nobel Prize Official Website)


The Jamhuri Report 30-Apr-2017
Top 3 Company Headlines   
Scangroup (SCAN:NAI) 4% fall in profit (Standard Media 29-Apr)  
TPS Eastern Africa (SRLH:NAI) swing into profit (Standard Media 27-Apr)
Dubai Islamic Bank (DIB:RI) licenced (Standard Media 28-April
Top 3 Macro and Risk Headlines  
Ongoing drought threatens economy (World Bank 12-Apr
Rise in job uncertainty (Business Daily 29-Apr)
President warns against election violence (Bloomberg 20-Apr)

The Jamhuri’s View  
Ongoing drought sees projected GDP decelerate 0.5% to 5% and inflation surge 1.5% to 11.5%.The interest rate cap, which has affected Barclays (BBK:NAI), is also causing job losses.
Increased taxes and food costs, higher costs of living, and higher costs of business are combining to create serious problems for Kenya. Recent months have seen strikes and political violence. Economic adversity is increasing political instability.
Fun Fact: Kenyan marathon runner Mary Keitany broke the women’s world record in London (Bloomberg 23-Apr)


The Jamhuri Report 31-Mar-2017
Top 3 Company Headlines  
Safaricom cuts M-pesa tariffs by half (Standard Media 29-Mar)   
Tea firms experience fall in profits (East African 27-Mar
Uber increases fare by 20% after labour strikes (Reuters 17-Mar
Top 3 Macro and Risk Headlines  
Govt begin selling bonds via mobile phone (BBC 23-Mar
Inflation at 10.28%  (Kenya National Bureau of Statistics 31-Mar
Govt consider scrapping 10% interest rate cap (Capital fm 27-Mar
The Jamhuri’s View  
Y-o-y inflation is at a 5-year high. It was 6.99% in January. It has been pushed by rising food prices resulting from drought. Williamson Tea Kenya (GWKL:NAI) and Kapchorua Tea (KAPC:NAI) expect at least 25% fall in profits. Along with Uber, they are also affected by spiralling inflationary wage-prices. The Jamhuri predicts further price rises and that the burden of higher wages will fall on consumers.  
Fun Fact: A survey has shown that Kenya tops the list in terms of youth gamblers, with 76% of them betting on football matches (The Star 31-Mar


The Jamhuri Report 28-Feb-2017
Top 3 Company Headlines
British American Tobacco (BATS:LSE) profit falls 15% (Business Daily 22-Feb)
Fusion Capital buys Thika Royal Palms (Business Daily 26-Feb)
Private equity funds buy 40% stake in Kenafric (Standard Media 22-Feb)
Top 3 Macro Headlines
Peugeot (UG:FP) announces vehicle assembly plant (World Bulletin 05-Feb)
Talks to change law on interest rate caps (Bloomberg 22-Feb)
Economy losing billions from maritime sector (Standard Media 18-Feb)
The Jamhuri’s View  
The Jamhuri expects further French investment encouraged by Kenyatta’s aim to industrialise the economy. Further investment by foreign automakers comes at no surprise. France has also committed to $128m for the Ruiri dam project. French and South African based investment into Kenafric will help the manufacturer grow across Africa.
The Jamhuri is concerned that taxation is becoming a greater burden. British American Tobacco’s 15% post tax fall in profit is driven by increased excise duties. This led to a price rise.  The govt and banks are in talks to change the commercial rate cap as lending slows. The cap has failed to spark private sector credit growth.
Fun Fact: Kenyan animator Andrew Kaggia has become a nationwide hit on YouTube with his animations of American film superheroes battling each other (Mediamax 27-Feb)


The Jamhuri Report 31-Jan-2017 
Top 3 Company Headlines 
Airtel (BHARTIARTL:NSE) plan Africa stakes sale (Business Daily 31-Jan)
Leading retailer Nakumatt offered Sh8bn for 25% stake (Standard Media 18-Jan)
East African Breweries (EABL:NR) to boost spirits production (Bloomberg 27-Jan)
Top 3 Macro and Risk Headlines 
Lake Turkana 310 MW wind farm switch on in June (Reuters 18-Jan)
Luxury car sales drop 30% in 2016 (Reuters 18-Jan) 
$100m line of credit from India announced (Hindu 11-Jan)
The Jamhuri’s View  
Investment in Nakumatt will solve half its debt problem. Debt is also an issue for mobile operator Airtel Kenya. Its Indian parent company, Airtel, will sell stakes or merge some its 15 African units in order to stay afloat. While the mobile and supermarket sectors may be troubled, East Africa’s largest brewer will increase spirit production in the region. Business in Kenya is seeing mixed performance.
Election uncertainty and high duties are blamed for the drop in car sales. With the exception of Jaguar, orders for all luxury brands fell. India’s credit line to Kenya is for agricultural mechanisation. Expect further trade deals as both nations agree to deepen economic cooperation. The Central Bank of Kenya retains interest rates at 10% to protect against inflation following drought conditions and increased risk in global markets. 
Fun Fact: Mishi Mboko MP has asked women to withhold sex with their husbands until they register as voters for the 08-Aug elections (BBC 17-Jan)

The Jamhuri Report 31-Dec-2016 
Top 3 Company Headlines 
Volkswagen opens assembly plant (Daily Monitor 21-Dec)  
Fastjet (FJET:LSE) opts out of Nairobi (East African 14-Dec)  
Sasani Ltd invests Sh400m in Macadamia factory (Standard Media 10-Dec) 
Top 3 Macro and Risk Headlines
Fitch rates Kenya B+; negative outlook (Reuters 23-Dec) 
Q3 growth slows to 5.7% (Kenya National Bureau of Statistics 23-Dec) 
Infrastructure plan launched with Uganda (Capital FM 09-Dec)  
The Jamhuri’s View 
The Jamhuri predicts further increase in public debt due to planned infrastructure projects. The plans will connect 6 countries and make transporting goods & materials more efficient. Fitch ratings affirmed B+ rating on long term borrowing with a negative outlook. Q3 GDP slows to 5.7%, down from 6% in same period in 2015. Agriculture, forestry, and fishing are the main causes.
Low cost airline Fastjet withdrew its Nairobi flights blaming regulatory hurdles and an unfriendly business environment. Volkswagen invested in Kenya due to surging car sales driven by rising incomes. The Jamhuri expects more car manufacturers to invest. Clearly consumer demand is enough to overcome other barriers to business.
Fun Fact: Fistfight breaks out in parliament between rival MPs over the introduction of manual vote counting for next year’s presidential election (BBC 21-Dec)

​The Jamhuri Report 30-Nov-2016
Top 3 Company Headlines
Barclays Kenya 9-month profit falls (Reuters 16-Nov)
Housing Finance Group Sh1.2bn pre-tax profit (Standard Media 22-Nov)
Chase Bank & others lose investor appeal (East African 21-Nov)
Top 3 Macro and Risk Headlines
Shilling stable against the dollar (Reuters 29-Nov)
Tanzanian sues to stop EU-Kenya trade deal (Today 19-Nov)
November inflation 6.68% (Kenyan National Bureau of Statistics 30-Nov)
The Jamhuri’s View
The Jamhuri thinks that stability against the USD is temporary. This is due to tourism sector weaknesses, a large CA deficit, and a strong USD. Continued depreciation is expected. Tanzania has lodged a civil suit threatening to halt Kenya’s European Partnership Agreement.
Interest rate caps have dashed CBK’s hopes of attracting new capital. Potential investors to the troubled lender included the Qatar National Bank and Bank of Mauritius. The caps make credit harder to access and may put off foreign investment. Some firms have now realised they need to rethink strategies and change business models to be competitive in Kenya.
Fun Fact: Bearded Australian backpacker is forced to deny he is Jesus after being mobbed in Nairobi (Daily Mail 29-Nov)