Connect with us

Business

Who Owns Rubis Energy, The fastest Growing Oil Company In The Country

Published

on

TheBigIssue

The recent fuel shortage in the country has raised so many concerns about the oil & petroleum management systems in the country. Hiked prices and long queues due to fuel shortages have left many Kenyans suffering.

Rubis Energy is one of the fasted growing companies in the oil sector in East Africa. In a span of less than five years since entering the market that was dominated by Total Kenya Limited and Vivo Energy Kenya, Rubis is now the leading.

Rubis Energy’s ownership was brought into question last week following the acute fuel shortage experienced in the country. This was after Deputy President William Ruto claimed that a number of powerful individuals in the country have interests in the petroleum sector thus creating an artificial shortage.

It has been said severally that the Kenyatta family owns the company, however, it’s not confirmed.

This narrative has raised concerns among Kenyans who have posed hard questions to the head of state since he comes from the famous Kenyatta family.

Entrance Into Kenyan Market

After conducting market research, Rubis Energy first joined the Kenyan market in late 2018.

The growth of the oil market in East and Central Africa prompted the company’s decision to join the country’s market was based on.

Rubis first acquired Kenol Kobil Plc in March 2019 securing a major percentage of the shares enabling it to take 100% control of the company. Rubis bought 1,182,968,076 shares amounting to Ksh38.3 billion, that is, at 23 shillings per share. This is according to a statement released by the Competition Authority of Kenya. 

Following the acquisition, Rubis took charge of over 400 fuel stations and billion-dollar assets spread out in Kenya, Uganda, Burundi, Ethiopia, Rwanda and Zambia.

Having achieved that, It didn’t stop there.

In December of the same year, Rubis acquired Gulf energy at a total cost of Ksh16.4 billion as reported by business daily Africa.

The two deals propelled the company to become the top retailer with over 236 fuel stations surpassing Total Kenya-which has 150 fuel stations and Vivo Energy Kenya with over 200 stations.

Rubis has invested billions of shillings to build new filling stations and rebrand the ones formerly owned by KenolKobil and Gulf Energy.

Company’s Background

French billionaire Gilles Gobin founded Rubis Investment and Cie as a private limited company on 13th May 1990 as reported by Wikipedia.

It started its operation as a storage company before merging with an investment company known as Penhoet to form Rubis in June 1992.

In April 1993, it acquired the hydrocarbons and chemical storage company, Compagnie Parisienne des Asphaltes (CPA), which was one of the leading operators in the French market.

In October 2005, Rubis purchased SAGF Company which is Shell’s distributor of LPG and petroleum products in the West Indies and French Guiana. It parted with €116 million to secure the deal.

Also Check: Stabex, Uganda’s largest Oil Company That has Been Linked To DP Ruto

Over the next year, Rubis kept acquiring other Shell’s operations in Europe, America, and Africa.

Without stopping, Rubis continued acquiring major companies in the oil sector such as BP Frangaz in France, Chevron in the Caribbean, Shell in Jamaica and Delta Petrol in Turkey.

Who Owns Rubis (Shareholders)

Information from the company’s website indicates that the company is owned by a number of shareholders both international and local.

As of 2020, 85.74 % of Rubis was owned by investors in a free float, Supervisory board (0.13 %) General Partner managers (2.21%), Marcel Dessault (5.45%), Wellington Management Group LLP (5.08%), Rubis Avenir mutual fund (1.32%), and Treasury shares (0.06%).

However, the shareholding structure has since changed following the company’s entry into Africa. According to Market Screener, Marcel Dessault has since increased its ownership in the company, reducing the free float ownership.

Continue Reading
Advertisement

Business

Three Global Firms Signed By Nairobi Financial Hub On Its Launch

Published

on

TheBigIssue

Three companies were signed by Nairobi’s international financial centre on the day of its launch. The three include Prudential plc, ARC Ride Kenya and AirCarbon Exchange (ACX).

The Nairobi International Financial Centre (NIFC) is a special economic zone for financial firms.

Prudential, one of the world’s biggest insurers and asset managers, became the first firm to formally join the NIFC.

Singapore-based global carbon exchange ACX came along with Prudential. It seeks to set up a carbon exchange in Kenya.

Check out: Why Buyers Are Now Running Away From Popular Used Toyota Cars

NIFC has also admitted ARC Ride Kenya. It is a new start-up that is going to establish an electric vehicle assembly plant in Nairobi. The plant will produce two and three-wheeled electric bikes and scooters.

Also, the Financial Centre is determined to bolster the manufacturing sector in the country. It has signed an MoU with the Kenya Association of Manufacturers (KAM), to help increase financing and investment in the sector.

NIFC authority has hinted at being in discussion with other participants seeking to join it and will give official news soon.

“Last year Prudential Plc, one of the world’s biggest insurers and asset managers, made a commitment to relocating their Africa headquarters from London to Nairobi and join the Centre. Today we are proud to announce that Prudential becomes the first firm to formally join the Nairobi International Financial Centre,” Vincent Rague, Chairman NIFC Authority.

After many years of waiting, the hub will eye large foreign firms, boosting capital flows to Kenya and the region.

The authority has singled-out four sectors that it will prioritise for growth: financial technology, green finance, investment funds, and becoming a hub for regional multinationals.

The NIFC general regulations have been enacted, as the initial set of tax incentive proposals have been passed.

Also read: The Ultimate Guide to Digital PR

Certification from the NIFC Authority must be applied by Firms considering conducting business through the NIFC.

A 15% corporate tax will benefit firms operating a carbon market exchange or emission trading system under the NIFC. The 15% advantage will happen for the first 10 years of operation.

Companies certified by the NIFC Authority and have invested a minimum of Sh5 billion will benefit from the certainty that, the Capital Gains Tax applicable at the time they make their investments will remain unchanged during the lifetime of the investments.

Continue Reading

Business

Hackers Make Tactical Change, Now Targeting Small Businesses

Published

on

TheBigIssue

Traditionally, cybercriminals have been targeting big companies with aim of demanding ransoms running into millions. Nonetheless, the trend no longer holds, as new studies have shown the shift in hackers’ interest from big companies to small and medium ones.

Studies have shown that hackers are shifting their focus to small online businesses which they believe are more vulnerable.

Experts have warned that these SMEs and payment portals, especially those relying on mobile payment solutions, are now facing high risks of cyber attacks coordinated by these hackers.

Speaking during the inaugural Africa Cybersecurity Congress held in Nairobi, Hadi Maeleb, Agora Group co-founder and CEO said the threats to online businesses were growing at a high rate.

Further, he stated that more than 90% of business owners are unaware that their enterprises are at risk, despite the high growth rate of the attacks.

“Cybercriminals are now targeting small businesses more as they have realized that these enterprises do believe they would be exposed due to their comparatively low turnovers until they lose their data and payments are compromised,” said Mr Maeleb.

With the adoption of e-commerce platforms, State agencies, financial institutions, healthcare, energy and utilities have persistently faced cyber-attacks in the recent past.

According to CAK- Communications Authority of Kenya’s first-quarter data (between January to March 2022), a total of 79.2 million cyber-attacks were reported. This has prompted the government to issue 28,848 advisories in an attempt to fight the rising attacks.

Invest in Cybersecurity

Mr Maeleb noted that business owners should invest in cybersecurity tools as there is no magical solution to cybercrime.

“This ‘democratization’ of cyberattacks is expected to push losses due to business interruption, financial theft, personal data breaches and even ransom payments over the Sh4 trillion mark by end of 2022,” he said.

At the peak of the pandemic, several states adopted tough lockdown measures such as social distancing, working from home, and online learning.

Also read: Why Buyers Are Now Running Away From Popular Used Toyota Cars

Hackers shifting focus to small businesses.

This adoption of digital solutions such as e-commerce, remote working and banking went up as Kenyans turned to online platforms to curb the spread of the coronavirus.

“Unfortunately for them, the business of cybercrime has evolved to a point where attacks like ransomware are now sold as a service,” he added.

Even though these measures triggered the adoption of digital platforms, they also increased vulnerability such as ransom, data breaches, harassment, cyberbullying, and data breaches.

Kenya’s ICT Policy which came into effect in 2006, is credited for creating an enabling environment for the growth and usage of technology.

Kenya’s ICT Policy which came into effect in 2006, is credited for creating an enabling environment for the growth and usage of technology.

To achieve Kenya’s Vision 2030 goal of a regional ICT hub, the tech sector was expected to contribute directly and indirectly to an additional 1.5% of Kenya’s GDP by 2017/2018.

Continue Reading

Business

Why Buyers Are Now Running Away From Popular Used Toyota Cars

Published

on

TheBigIssue

As it has been noted that Kenyans are now running away from the popular used Toyota car models, contrary to what has been a tradition in the country. The rise in their costs has seen even dealers cut down on imports of these vehicles due to decreased demand.

Traditionally, popular models such as Toyota Premio and RAV4 have been synonymous with middle-income earners over the years. However, this is no longer the trend.

Car dealers say more Kenyans are now going for vehicles such as Nissan Sylphy and Mazda, which cost less compared with popular Toyota models.

Toyota Vs Nisaan and Mazda models

According to Charles Munyori, the secretary-general of Kenya Auto Bazaar Association, Nissan Sylphy and Mazda’s CX5 and Axela, are quickly gaining popularity among Kenyans.

Mr Munyori said the price of a Toyota RAV4 has short up to Sh3 million currently from Sh2.8 million in February while a Premio is going for Sh2.2 million from Sh2 million four months ago.

On the contrary, Mazda Axela is now selling for Sh1.6 million with Nissan Sylphy (Blue Bird) going for at least Sh1.5 million.

Currently, consumers find these brands to be the best alternatives to their preferred models, as they are relatively cheaper and good.

Check out: Stabex, Uganda’s largest Oil Company That has Been Linked To DP Ruto

With the rising household costs, these car prices are making them affordable to most Kenyans as they struggle to balance the high cost of living.

“We are seeing a shift where Kenyans are now moving from the popular brands such as Toyota Premio and RAV4 to other models. This shift has been occasioned by the high cost that these cars are now fetching at the market,” said Mr Munyori.

“In fact, most of the car dealers are hardly bringing in Premio and RAV4 models because they are not moving and they will tie up money that they would need for importation of more vehicles,” he said.

Ex-Japanese vehicles

Ex-Japan vehicles dominate the Kenyan second-hand sector with a more than 80% market share.

Also read:

The buyers in the sector prefer these cars as their spare parts are easier to obtain locally compared to other brands. Additionally, buyers believe that the resale value of Toyota vehicles are higher than that of other brands like mazda or Nissan.

Reasons for risisng vehicle cost

The rising cost of vehicles in the country has been linked to the unavailability of dollars locally, a shortage of electronic chips in Japan, and a weakening shilling against the dollar.

The country is currently experiencing extreme dollar shortage, that one has to wait for at least three days to get $20,000 or $25,000 from the banks.

“We have to wait for like nine days in order to accumulate $80,000, and this has seen car dealers delay in making their orders. We are really feeling the impact of the dollar shortage in the market,” Mr Munyori said.

banks have imposed regulations on dollar purchase. This has forced traders to face difficulty in meeting their obligations.

Industrialists are forced to start seeking dollars in advance. The shortage puts a strain on supplier relations and the ability to negotiate favourable prices in gap markets.

On the other hand, Semiconductors are used in making electronic devices. Their shortage has forced the vehicle manufacturers to scale down the production. The quantity and quality cannot be maintained with decrease in one of the crucial raw material.

Finally, the shilling has persistently remained weak against the dollar. this has made it costly for importers shipping in goods.

The shilling has hit a record low trading at of Sh 117.06 against the dollar. This predicts a continued rise in imported goods, and signifies a further dollar shortage crisis.

The continuous depreciation in shilling stability is attributed to increased demand for dollars from importers. This highly arises on importaion of crude oil and merchandised goods.

It should be noted that most external debt is repaid in the dollar. Therefore, a weakened shilling increases prices of imported goods, and puts pressure on the country’s debt repayment.

Continue Reading

Trending