Uchumi has appointed John Karani as interim chairman following the retirement of Dr. Catherine Ngahu who has been at the helm of the cash strapped chain store for three years.
In a statement to newsrooms, the retailer’s board stated that the decision to appoint Mr. Karani in acting capacity followed Dr. Ngahu’s decision not to renew her term in office who has instead opted to focus on her business interests and other engagements.
Uchumi’s Board said that the appointment became effective on October 24 adding that a new chairperson will be appointed in due course.
“The Board acknowledges Dr. Ngahu’s significant contributions to Uchumi, particularly the efforts to identify a potential investor as well as implementation of various initiatives aimed at stabilising and turning around the business, and wishes her well in her future endeavours,” read the statement.
Mr. Karani has been serving as a Non-Executive Director of the retailer since September 9, 2016. He has 27 years’ experience in management of blue-chip companies across Africa.
He holds an MBA Degree in Strategic Management from the United States International University (USIU) and a Bachelors Degree in Economics from the University of Nairobi (UON).
For a period of 18 years, Karani was the Head of Global Procurement at Coca Cola Africa. He has also had management stints at GlaxoSmithKline and Wrigleys East Africa Limited.
The former Non-Executive Director is also a fellow of the Chartered Institute of Purchasing & Suppliers Management (UK) and a member of the Chartered Institute of Logistics & Transport (UK).
Until her resignation, Dr. Ngahu had been serving as a Non-Executive Chairman of Uchumi since her appointment in 2016 .
She is also the Founder and Executive Chairperson of SBO Research, a leading Marketing Research Company working in several countries in Africa.
She holds a PhD in Business Administration from the University of Nairobi.
Dr. Ngahu is the Chairperson of Universal Service Advisory Council at the Communications Authority of Kenya (CA) and a member of the Board of AAR Insurance as well as Moran Publishers.
She recently quit the Eveready Board on September 14 citing inability to perform her role due other responsibilities.