South African companies have topped Ksh 10 billion worth of investment to stir the growing technology residence in Kenya, Tatu City.
The 5,000-acre Special Economic Zone – located 30 minutes from central Nairobi – represents one of South African foreign direct investment concentrations in Kenya and East Africa.
South Africa’s High Commissioner to Kenya, Mninwa Johannes Mahlangu, toured investments by leading South African companies at Tatu City on Tuesday. His stops included Crawford International school, a 20-acre, multi-billion-shilling investment by ADvTECH, the Johannesburg Stock Exchange-listed education group; Kenya Wine Agencies Ltd (KWAL), which is majority-owned by South African beverage conglomerate Distell; and Cold Solutions, an investment by ARCH Emerging Markets Partners, which is backed by South African businessman Patrice Motsepe.
“I am delighted to witness these transformational investments South African businesses are making in Kenya,” High Commissioner Mahlangu said at a ceremony to mark the naming of Crawford Road, which leads to Crawford International School in Tatu City. “The South African and Kenyan governments are committed to strong bilateral trade and investment, and our private sector businesses are natural partners to grow capital flows and knowledge exchange.”
Jenny Coetzee, Managing Director, Crawford International, said that ADvTECH’s first Crawford International school had experienced a surge in enrolment in Kenya since opening in 2019 in Tatu City.
“Our primary and secondary schools are close to being full, and I am pleased to announce that we have completed the designs to construct our new high school building, creating room for more students,” Coetzee said. “Crawford and ADvTECH have received such a warm welcome in Kenya, from parents, the government and the business community, and we are pleased to have been ranked recently as one of the top ten leading schools in Kenya.”
High Commissioner Mahlangu visited the site of Cold Solutions, a 15,000 sqm flagship facility, which will improve food and pharmaceutical security and promote economic development in Kenya and the region. ARCH’s Cold Chain Solutions East Africa Fund, which is undertaking the investment, is jointly owned by Africa Rainbow Capital, which is backed by South African entrepreneur Motsepe.
“Cold Solutions’ first facility in Kenya is on track to open next year and experiencing strong demand from tenants ranging from food to pharmaceutical companies,” said Jared Irving, Managing Director of Cold Chain Solutions East Africa Fund.
The high commissioner concluded his visit at KWAL, which broke ground on a KES 4 billion production and distribution facility at Tatu City on 12 February 2021. In addition to Distell, the Kenyan Government is a significant shareholder through the Industrial and Commercial Development Corporation (ICDC).
“KWAL is the embodiment of partnership and trade between Kenya and South Africa,” said Lina Githuka, KWAL’s managing director. “The new KWAL facility will enhance our capacity to produce and distribute aspirational brands to meet the tastes of our customers.”
Currently, at Tatu City Special Economic Zone, more than 60 local, regional and multi-national businesses have opened or started development. These include industry leaders such as Dormans, Cooper K-Brands, KWAL, Cold Solutions, Chandaria Industries, Kim-Fay, Davis & Shirtliff, Copia, FFK, Twiga Foods, and Stecol, among others. Residential developments at Tatu City include Unity Homes, Lifestyle Heights, and Kijani Ridge. More than 5,000 homes are completed or under construction and Crawford International and Nova Pioneer schools educate more than 3,000 students daily.