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Thursday, April 21, 2016

KCB APPOINTS HR DIRECTOR NEW CHASE BANK BOSS

KCB has appointed its HR Director Paul Russo as the new boss of Chase Bank. The nation's largest bank was picked by Central Bank Of Kenya to take over the distressed SME lender raising eyebrows.

This is because Kenya Deposit Insurance Corporation, the appointed receiver of Chase, is chaired by KCB chief executive Joshua Oigara.

Russo was recruited from South African lender Absa about two years ago.

The Strathmore MBA holder has also worked with PWC, an auditing firm.

The deployment of Russo comes ahead of Chase reopening its doors to the public next week.

Tuesday, April 19, 2016

KCB LOSES BID TO BUY CHASE BANK TO QATARI LENDER

The nation's largest lender by assets, KCB Group, has reportedly lost its bid to purchase distressed Chase Bank.

KCB is said to have come in third from four bids the Central Bank of Kenya received for purchase of the SME lender.

Chase Bank went down after misreported insider loans caused depositors to make a run on it.

Qatari lender, QNB, the second largest bank in Africa and the Middle East, is said to be the front runner to take over Chase Bank

If it is successful, it will take over an entity with an enviable portfolio of small businesses that other banks have been angling for to drive their growth.

Rand Merchant Bank of South Africa was reportedly second in the bid with KCB coming in third.

CBK has yet to formally make any official announcement regarding the matter but insiders indicate QNB may get the nod.

Chase shareholders have been pushing for CBK to bring in someone to run the bank rather than go the Good Bank - Bad Bank way which they feel would destroy the lender.

Also being mentioned is French lender BNP Paribas but this is seen as a long shot with few European lenders seeking to expand on the continent.

Nedbank SA has equally been mentioned as a possible candidate.




Wednesday, April 6, 2016

CHASE BANK CHAIRMAN AND GROUP MD RESIGN, PAUL NJAGA TAKES OVER AS GMD/CEO

Chase Bank chairman Zafrullah Khan and Group Managing Director, Duncan Kabui have resigned with immediate effect.

Paul Njaga takes over as Group MD and Chief Executive Officer while Muthoni Kuria, a member of the board, takes over as acting Chair.

No reason has been given for the sudden resignations although sources indicate they came at the insistence of the Central Bank of Kenya.

Governor Patrick Njoroge who has CEOs of Kenyan banks literally shaking in their boots would not be drawn into discussion over Chase Bank during a media briefing earlier today.

Questions have been raised regarding Chase Bank's momentous swing from a healthy profitable position at the end of the nine months to September 30, 2015 only to plunge into loss territory at the end of December 31, 2015.

The bank reported a loss of Sh790million.

Chse is a tier III bank popular with SMEs and especially contractors and suppliers who favour it for funding their LPOs.

Last week it announced a Sh5billion credit facility from the African Development Bank for onward lending to SMEs.

Last year it came to the market with a corporate bond which was oversubscribed.


Tuesday, March 29, 2016

DSTV ELECTS TO ABSORB EPL TV RIGHTS INCREASE

As Leicester City roll towards an improbable premier league triumph at the King Power Stadium, DSTV has bucked the trend set by other global sports channels like Sky and BT Sports to keep subscription prices unchanged. 

Sky Sports, BT Sports, Virgin Media among others have raised their subscription rates to cover for the new record TV deal with the English Premier League.

The company has announced it will not be raising its prices instead choosing to absorb the increase.

Sky Sports for instance, raised its prices to reflect the higher cost of televising 116 games between 2016 and 2019.

BT Sports also raised prices for the 42 games it will show.

Supersport, the DSTV sports offering, shows all 308 EPL games, by far the most of any outlet globally. 

"We’ve decided to absorb some of the pain and NOT impose a price increase on any of our DStv bouquets in April as we usually do. Barring any further external economic shocks, we do not anticipate a price increase in 2016," Walingo Chiruyi, the Multichoice Kenya general manager said.




Tuesday, March 15, 2016

DStv to televise the Barclays Kenya Golf Open 2016

DStv will air the Kenya Golf Open, the premier golf event in the country, on its Superport channels giving the tournament a much needed boost in stature as it is beamed across the region.

The Barclays Kenya Open will be held at the Karen Golf Club this week, kicking off on Thursday, 17 March 2016.

It will end on Sunday, 20th.

Local hopes for a first win at the tournament will be carried by Dismas Indiza who finished 28th last year on the same course as well as Greg Snow and the out of form Jacob Okello.

Okello is famous for narrowly losing out the 1998 Kenya Open in a playoff at the Muthaiga Golf Course.

Multichoice which has replicated its Randburg Supersport studios at Jamhuri Park will spend about Sh3m to produce and transmit the tournament and will also spend another Sh4.5m to help offset the organizers cost of putting together the tournament.

The company will also fly in Supersport golf commentator Richard Maspero to be part of the production team.

Multichoice has also invested in several outdoor broadcasting trucks which will likely be on site to capture the action.


Tuesday, March 8, 2016

TRUECALLER TO NOW SHOW PHOTO AND NAME OF UNKNOWN CALLERS

Phonebook App, Truecaller, will now display the names and photos of people who call you even if they are not on your phonebook.

Known as Smart History, once an unknown number calls you, Truecaller will then replace it with a name and a picture of the phone owner.

The San Francisco-based company says keeping a list of contacts on your phone will no longer be necessary as it will serve as your phonebook.

All unknown numbers in your call history will be replaced with a name and a picture.

The feature begins rolling out tonight on Android phones, and will be available to other platforms over the coming weeks.

Truecaller works by using crowd sourced data. The millions of users that have downloaded accept in their terms of use to give the App access to their contacts.

Truecaller uploads these contacts along with the names and then uses its algorithms to sort and match them against data it has uploaded from other users. After making sure it has no duplicates, it then makes this info available to other users.

So even if you do not download the App, your name and contact could end up on its database having been uploaded from a person who has saved your contact on their phone and subsequently subscribed to Truecaller.


Tuesday, February 16, 2016

EUTELSAT DEPLOYS NEW SATELLITE FOR AFRICAN BROADCAST COVERAGE

Eutelsat 36A ku-Band for Africa
Eutelsat, one of the world's largest satellite providers has deployed a brand new satellite to cover Africa for purposes of carrying television signals.

The company which carries roughly half of all television channels broadcast on the African continent, runs a fleet of 40 communication satellites around the world with 10 dedicated to Africa.

These satellites primarily provide two services: TV broadcasting, and Data transmission.

What is unique about this particular new satellite is that its capacity will be taken up entirely by Multichoice, the pan African content giant.

This is expected to see the company largely expand the number of channels it offers on its flagship DStv service while at the same time converting many of the standard definition channels into High Definition (HD) channels.

According to Rodney Benn, regional director for Eutelsat Communications, the satellite which was launched almost two months ago has been undergoing testing before it is handed over to Multichoice.

Eutelsat satellites for Africa in an orbital location of 36 degrees East where they service both Sub-Saharan Africa and Russia.

"Roughly 1000 channels are broadcast on our satellites in Africa," Benn said.

He spoke when he visited Nairobi to award winners of the DStv Eutelsat essay writing and poster design competition.

Entries from Zimbabwe and Ghana scooped top the top prizes.