Kenya's biggest retailer goes into administration after High Court gives nod

He is expected to manage the settling of debts estimated at more than $300 million and would try to revive the business.

The High Court approved his appointed as an administrator on Monday and he is expected to take up his role soon.

“It is hoped and expected that the administration order, if properly executed will be beneficial to all the creditors,” Judge Fredrick Ochieng said.

Nakumatt welcomed the ruling saying it had a “strong underlying sustainable core business that is capable of a turnaround with the support of all stakeholders.”

Kahi, who works with a Nairobi consultancy, has experience in turning around distressed businesses.

He is expected to manage the settling of debts estimated at more than $300 million and would try to revive the business in a slimmed down version with about 20 branches, down from 62 at its peak.

At the time it was seeking protection in October, the firm had only 4,000 staff and since then it has closed several other outlets.

Nakumatt sought protection using Kenya’s newly enacted company laws, which provide a pathway for distressed firms to avoid complete collapse.

Nakumatt Supermarket was at the height of its operations, East Africa’s biggest supermarket chain with more than 60 outlets spread across Kenya, Uganda, Tanzania and Rwanda.

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