Simba Corporation (“Simba”) has completed the acquisition of a minority stake in Hemingways Holdings Limited (“Hemingways”). The acquisition of the 35% shareholding in Hemingways is a strategic investment that will provide additional capital to fund growth and expansion within the Hemingways group of companies.
The acquisition signals a bold move by Simba to grow its interests in the hospitality sector, from its current three properties: the Olare Mara and Villa Rosa managed by world leading hoteliers, Kempinski, and Acacia Premier Kisumu. Through their collaboration, Hemingways and Simba intend to achieve long-term sustained growth and continue to develop best-in-class hospitality assets built to the highest international standards.
“Since our entry into the Hospitality sector in 2010, we have been focused on creating world class experiences for our guests. Through our partnership with Hemingways, we intend to continue to build on this strategy. This investment is therefore aligned to Simba’s goal of creating a substantial Hospitality business platform with the intention to expand nationally and within the region,” said, Adil Popat, Chief Executive Officer, Simba Corporation.
Hemingways Holdings Limited is the parent company of three iconic properties that represent the definitive portfolio of luxury travel in Kenya: Hemingways Watamu, Ol Seki Hemingways Mara and Hemingways Nairobi. The transaction also includes Express Travel Group, a subsidiary of Hemingways, that provides comprehensive and high quality travel management services through its international franchise partnerships with American Express Global Business Travel and Europcar International as well as through Hemingways Expeditions, a premium Destination Management Company.
“Partnering with Simba enables the Hemingways Group to reach our goal of developing and growing the luxury segment in the hospitality sector. At this point in our expansion plans, with the fabulous new mixed use development of hotel and apartments in Watamu nearing completion, this is exactly the right time for us as a Group to partner with a very respected operator such as Simba. I used to work closely with the late Chairman and I have huge respect for Adil Popat and the way in which he operates believing in quality and investing for the future of Kenya. We both share an entrepreneurial outlook and ambition for the hospitality industry and this partnership can only enhance both our objectives to be the leading luxury hospitality operators in the region” ,” said Richard Evans, Hemingways Holdings Chairman.
Further financial deal terms were not disclosed. Following completion of the acquisition, Simba will have representation on the Hemingways Holdings board.
BDO were the financial advisors to Simba Corporation. Anjarwalla & Khanna served as legal counsel to Simba Corporation and Amin & Co served as legal counsel to Hemingways on the transaction.
Founded in 1948 by the late Mr. Abdul Karim Popat as a modest used-car selling enterprise, the Nairobi-headquartered company has grown into a large integrated multi-sector business services group representing international brands and franchises such as Mitsubishi, FUSO, BMW, Mahindra, Renault, AVIS, SAME tractors and AKSA generators.Simba's hospitality properties include the Olare Mara and Villa Rosa managed by world leading hoteliers, Kempinski,as well as Acacia Premier Kisumu.