The Standard Group has announced it will be relocating back to the Nairobi Central Business District from its Mombasa Road base. At a meeting with staff held on Wednesday morning at Standard Centre, Group chief executive Sammy Shollei said the media house will operate from ICEA Building on Kenyatta Avenue, a few metres from I&M Building where it used to operate before shifting to Standard Group Centre.
Its new home is a stone throw away from Nation Centre, which houses its arch-rival Nation Media Group. Standard operates a skeleton newsroom and marketing office at I&M, which will move to ICEA. The whole newspaper, radio and TV newsroom will relocate to town, while management, main KTN studio and its Sh500 million printing press will remain at Standard Centre. The remaining space will be rented out to other businesses to generate revenue for the group.
The 31-storey ICEA building, previously owned by ICEA Lion Group, was in October last year acquired by Jomo Kenyatta University of Agriculture and Technology, which moved its city centre campus from Pension Towers to occupy the 11th to 14th floor, for Ksh1.85 billion.
It is not yet known how much space Standard Group – which owns the Standard newspaper, KTN Television, the Nairobian and Radio Maisha – has leased on ICEA building. But from the reduced size of its staff after last year’s restructuring, it’s likely to occupy less space than it currently does.
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The decision to shift back to the city centre is informed by the need to further ease logistics of news gathering and processing, including collaboration between the various units and publics and transport and in turn reduce costs. The move could be implemented in the next three to five months as the media house readies itself for next year’s electoral coverage.
The ICEA building houses some of Nairobi’s major corporates like Hamilton Harrison & Mathews Advocates, Prudential Life Assurance Kenya Ltd, Kobil Petroleum Limited, AAR Health Services Limited, GNLD International Ltd, Standard Investment Bank, Kenstrel Capital (East Africa) Limited and the National Bank, among others.
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