Kenya’s share of Africa’s Top 250 Companies

I today read the cover story of African Business “Africa’s Top 250 Companies, African Business Annual Ranking”.  The introduction to the article states that there are

“some interesting trends with the growth of companies mirroring the general pattern of the continental growth.  The dominance of mining companies, for example, is diminishing in favour of more consumer-oriented ones”

Within the rankings East Africa account for 20 out of the total 250 companies listed and Kenya 12 of these 20.

  • EABL
  • Safaricom
  • KCB
  • Barclays Bank Kenya
  • Equity Bank
  • Standard Chartered Bank
  • Bamburi Cement
  • BAT
  • Cooperative Bank of Kenya
  • Nation Media Group
  • Kengen
  • Athi River Mining


Of the Kenyan companies listed 5 are within banking and financial services, 2 are within consumer goods (represented by alcohol and tobacco), 1 telecom, 1 media, 1 construction materials, 1 utilities and 1 mining.

With the exception of Athi River Mining, which is new to the listing in 2013, all other companies have risen in the rankings since 2012 by up to and impressive 85 places as achieved by Nation Media Group.

A comparison to the list of top companies in 2009 shows that Nation Media Group, Athi River Mining and Cooperative Bank of Kenya have made it onto the list since then, otherwise all other Kenya based companies are the same.  There has also been a change with Kenya Airways which now only makes it onto the list as KQ Tanzania, and therefore has not been listed above in line with African Business’s categorisation.

With regard to the spread of industries across Africa and within Kenya, the following comparison can be made.

Overall Kenya
Mining and metal 24% 8.3%
Banks and financial services 17.3% 41.5%
Food and beverage 13.4% 16.6%
Construction industry 5.4% 8.3%
Telecoms 7.8% 8.3%

These comparative figures show a massive dominance of the banking industry within Kenya and its disproportionate share of dominance of this list.  This is further compounded when considering the top 25 regional rankings which includes a further two companies from the banking sector, Diamond Trust Bank and NIC Bank.  Therefore of the East Africa rankings 7 positions of the total 25 are held by Kenyan Banks.

Given the constant chatter about the expanding consumer market in East Africa coupled with the predicted massive rise in information technology developments within Kenya it will be very interesting to see which companies are listed in 10 years time.

Sam Crosthwaite – Client Service Manager

African Business Cover copy