Rostam Aziz has been in the headlines in Kenya in recent weeks as hurdles emerged in the Tanzanian mogul’s bid to bring a 30,000-tonne gas import and storage facility to Mombasa.
The application by Taifa Gas, one of Rostam’s companies, has not been cleared by the Energy and Petroleum Regulatory Authority (EPRA) which cited risks to the environment. The expansion of Taifa Gas, Tanzania’s largest LPG supplier, into Kenya is part of a bilateral trade agreement signed by Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta and his Tanzanian counterpart Samia Suluhu.
Who is Rostam Aziz?
Rostam Aziz was born in August 1964. Aziz was in 2013 named by Forbes as Tanzania’s first dollar billionaire. He has made his fortune in industries including telecommunications, mining, liquefied petroleum gas (LPG) and real estate.
He had a stint as a politician, serving as MP for Igunga constituency in Tabora Region from 1994 until his resignation in 2011 and as ruling party Chama Cha Mapinduzi (CCM) National Treasurer between 2005 and 2007.
His holdings include stakes in Caspian Mining, MIC Tanzania Plc (TiGO Tanzania), Taifa Gas Group, Ace Leather Group.
Through his Cavalry Holdings, Rostam once owned 35% of Vodacom Tanzania. He was the largest individual shareholder. In May 2014 he sold 17.2% of Vodacom Tanzania to Vodacom Group of South Africa for an estimated $250 million. In 2019, he sold his remaining stake in Vodacom Tanzania through his investment vehicle Mirambo Holdings for $220 million.
Taifa Gas is the largest LPG supplier in Tanzania. It has 35 plants and storage facilities spread across mainland Tanzania and Zanzibar.
Caspian Limited is the largest contract mining company in Tanzania. It has worked as a mining contractor for major firms including DeBeers and Barrick and Gold.
A consortium led by AXIAN Telecom and Rostam closed the acquisition of Millicom’s merged entity MIC Tanzania Public Limited Company (TiGo and Zantel). TiGo today boasts over 10 million registered subscribers.
In February 2021, Rostam’s Ace Leather unveiled a new leather processing plant in Morogoro, Tanzania described as the largest in Africa.
Rostam also has real estate holdings in Tanzania, Dubai and Oman.