Nairobi News


Uhuru quenches thirst as he reopens Senator Keg brewery in Kisumu

President Uhuru Kenyatta’s on Wednesday reopened a brewery in Kisumu in what its owners say could improve the economy of the region.

The plant owned by Kenya Breweries Limited will start operations in two years but the President said the move signals rising confidence by investors in what his administration is doing to improvement business environment.

“We promised to revive all factories. That is what we are doing. And we will continue to create an environment to see that all collapsed industries are open again,” he said.


His speech had, however, nearly been curtailed by a crowd jeering his deputy William Ruto. The crowd forced Mr Ruto to quickly give up the microphone.

And when the President began, they still jeered his Deputy chanting “we don’t want Ruto”.

KBL Managing Director Jane Karuku said the plant, which sits on a 55-acre plot on the edge of the Lake Victoria, will initially process only Senator Keg but should grow to take up a quarter of the company’s production capacity.

“Kisumu is very attractive for us at KBL because it has lots of resources we need. There is also lots of water because as you know this requires water to produce,” she said.


“It is also an opportunity for us to exploit regional markets across the borders in Uganda, South Sudan and Tanzania. In future, we plan to expand so we can meet the rising demand in these markets.”

The beneficiaries for this plant could be local farmers. KBL said it will contract 15,000 more farmers into its fold of suppliers.

“We hope by the time we start operations, farmers from the Kenya Breweries had closed this factory in 2002 citing sufficient capacity. The factory was turned into an idle eyesore, occasionally used as a depot even as employees lost their jobs. On Wednesday,” said Ms Karuku.

“There was no more capacity in Nairobi, fueling move to reopen Kisumu.”