East African Breweries Limited (EABL) on Thursday, December 10 confirmed the appointment of Jane Karuku as Group Managing Director (MD).
Karuku replaces Eric Cowan who has held the position since 2016. Cowan is leaving to take up a new role in Diageo’s global business as Managing Director for Africa Regional Markets.
Cowan will, however, continue to sit on EABL’s board of directors.
Karuku is currently the MD for EABL’s Kenyan subsidiary, Kenya Breweries Limited (KBL). She will be replaced at KBL by John Musunga.
A career executive, Karuku has over 25 years of experience in fast-moving consumer goods (FMCG) and non-governmental organisations.
She is the current Chairperson of the Kenya Vision 2030 Board and led the Kenya Covid-19 Fund Board created by President Uhuru Kenyatta to marshal funds for the fight against the pandemic.
Before joining KBL, she was President of the Alliance for a Green Revolution in Africa (AGRA), one of the major organizations working on food security and sustainable development on the continent.
She has also held top management roles at several large firms operating in the region.
At Cadbury’s East & Central Africa, she oversaw operations in 14 African countries as Managing Director.
Karuku also worked with Telkom Kenya as Deputy Chief Executive and Secretary General.
In addition, Karuku had stints at Farmer’s Choice Kenya and Kenya Co-operative Creameries
(now known as New KCC).
EABL Group Board Chairman Dr. Martin Oduor-Otieno welcomed the appointment, hailing Karuku’s track record.
“We are delighted to have Mrs. Jane Karuku take over the role of Group Managing Director at EABL – Jane brings with her remarkable wealth of experience having served within the Board and also managing the Kenya business.
“I am very confident that her depth of expertise and knowledge of the business will lead the Group to future growth in line with our strategy,” he stated.
Karuku’s replacement at KBL, John Musunga, joins EABL from GlaxoSmithKline (GSK).
He has held several positions at GSK, where he rose from a sales representative to General Manager of their Kenya and East Africa business.
Most recently, Musunga was been responsible for leading GSK’s vaccines business in Sub-Saharan Africa, South Asia and Eastern Europe.
Having taken on multiple global roles, Musunga has previously lived in Belgium and South Africa.
Oduor-Otieno expressed confidence that his management experience would lead to greater growth at KBL.
“John comes with a wealth of experience and strong legacy of business delivery and leadership in
Kenya and globally. John will be a great addition to both the Kenya and East Africa management teams.
“We look forward to him joining and making significant contribution to the business,” he stated.