Strength of a woman:The female CEO running a multi-billion brewery

At 52 years, Mrs. Tabitha Karanja is the CEO of Keroche Breweries; the first ever beer factory to be owned by a Kenyan.

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Tabitha Karanja is a Kenyan businesswoman, entrepreneur and industrialist.

Her story is a true reflection of the strength of a woman. She has gone through pain, anger, threats, intimidation, determination and prayers that have seen her emerge as one of the most successful business women in the country.

She has ventured into a business where many tried and failed as the industry was left to the multinationals to reign free. But 20 years later,52 year old Tabitha Karanja has emerged as a key player in Kenya's lucrative drinks industry mainly dominated by East African Breweries.

She is now the CEO of Keroche Ltd., the first large brewery in Kenya owned by a non multinational company.

Background and education

Tabitha Mukami Muigai Karanja was born on 29th August 1964 near Kijabe. She attended a couple of schools and undertook her Bachelor of Business Administration (B.B.A.) degree at the University of Nairobi.

Work career and experience

Soon after completing her education, Tabitha Karanja took up employmentin the Ministry of Tourism as an Accounting Clerk for close to two years. She then met her and married her husband who in 1997, started making fortified wine.

In 2007, when the government enacted heavy taxes on locally made wines, her product was priced out of the market. She begun making ready-to-drink gin and vodka, which her state-of-the-art factory still makes today.

In 2008, she added beer to her collection of alcoholic drinks, and made a brand called Summit. In 2013, the factory began expansion plans to increase beer production from 60,000 bottles per day to 600,000 bottles per day. The refurbished plant, which cost KSh5 billion was commissioned by Adan Mohammed, the Cabinet Secretary for Industrialization, on 31 March 2015.

Tabitha Karanja who serves as CEO of the Keroche breweries factory has managed to turn the once small brewery into a company with a turnover worth Sh1.5 billion ($17.6 million).She plans on expanding the plant to not the East and Central region but Africa as a whole.

Award

Personal life

Tabitha is married to Joseph Karanja and together, they are the parents of four children; James Karanja (who serves as the Chairman of Keroche Breweries Limited), Anerlisa Muigai, Edward Muigai and Tecra Muigai.

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