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8 Kenyan Billionaires Who Started Off As Hawkers

Kenyan billionaires a click of reserved individuals who control a big percentage of Kenyan economy.

However, not all of them started off from the top, some of them began as mere hawkers, surving from hand to mouth.

Below is a list of Kenyan business moguls who began as hawkers

1.Bundotich Buzeki

Zedekiah Bundotich Buzeki aka Buzeki started off as a hawker in the coastal region of Kenya, he would rise up early and distribute milk using a cart aka Mkokoteni

“I am a self-made individual who rose from a mere milk hawker in Mombasa to my current economic stature,” he said.

He went ahead and bought the company he was working for, and rebranded it to Kilifi Gold.

Today, Buzeki is the owner of Molo Milk and Limuru Dairy Farmers Cooperative Society. 

Brookside bought his entities in 2013 valued at Ksh1.1 billion. Making him one of the richest CEOs in Kenya

2.Hassan Ali Joho

Another business mogul who rose from the streets to high citadel board rooms, is Hassan Ali Joho.

Mombasa Governor, Hassan Ali Joho in the early days, used to hawk vitumbua (a popular coconut and rice vegan donut or pancake) 

Besides he used to work at Port of Mombasa when he was about 20 years

He would work as the a clearing and forwarding agent at the Port of Mombasa. 

Today, he owns a shipping firm.

3.Gerald Gikonyo and Gerishon Kirima

Before Kenya owned independent status, two men from the central region had a big dream.

Two hawkers, Gerald Gikonyo and Gerishon Kirima, from Rwathia village in Kangema, Murang’a County parked their bags and other belongings for Nairobi.

And when they arrived , They started hawking vegetables, selling charcoal and wattle bark while donning tattered clothes.

The duo’s success saw them build a hotel and even went ahead to employ Equity Chairman, Peter Munga, as a casual labourer in one of their establishments.

The formed  Rwathia Distributors which was then transformed into Rwathia Group that then acquired plots and constructed commercial and residential buildings.

Rwathia Groups own a sprawl of buildings in Nairobi including in the areas of lower Tom Mboya Street, Ronald Ngara Street and River Road among others.

 5.Paul Kinuthia

Another true story of success, is the Nice & Lovely company founder, Paul Kinuthia.

His business was started off with a capital of Ksh.3000 , operating between Kirinyaga Road before relocating to Kariobangi and then Gikomba.

By the year 2012, his firm was commanding an annual revenue of Ksh1.7 billion with profits of Ksh200 million.

In 2013, he closed a Ksh1.5 billion deal after L’Oreal Cosmetics from Paris, France acquired his then fledgling Nice & Lovely manufacturing Company InterConsumer Products.

 6.Madatally Manji

You will be forgiven if you don’t know  Madatally Manji, but not when you don’t know Manji Biscuits.

As the name suggests, Madatally Manji is the founder of the famous biscuit manufacturing companies.

But before fame and glory,  Madatally Manji started out as a hawker at Karatina Market.

7.A.M. Jeevanjee

Have you ever been to the Jeevanjee social ground in Nairobi, if yes, the man behind it is non other than A.M Jeevanjee.

Businessman Alibhai Mulla Jeevanjee success life began in Pakistan, before moving to Nairobi where he became a money magnet .

8.Mbugua Githere

Mwangi Gicheru started off as a vendor, selling of vegetables and fruits. He would later start a secondhand bicycle dealership in Limuru .

At the time of his death, Mbugua Githere had expanded his business empire to owning Runda Estate and was a large shareholder of the Pan Africa Insurance Company.

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