KENYA – East African Breweries Limited (EABL) has announced the appointment of Martin Oduor-Otieno, currently an independent non-executive director of the firm’s board as its new chairman, effective January 1, 2020.

He takes over from Charles Muchene who successfully completed his maximum tenure of nine years allowed for independent directors under the Corporate Governance Code issued by the Capital Markets Authority.

Muchene, the former Country Senior Partner at PricewaterhouseCoopers joined EABL board as an independent non-executive director in February 2011. He has served as chairman since February 2012.

Under his over five years tenure, the Group has invested over KSh40 billion (US$400m) in capital expenditure in its subsidiaries across East Africa.

Among them include the establishment of an KSh14 billion (US$140m) brewery in Kisumu and KSh900 million (US$9m) spirits line in Ruaraka, Nairobi.

The KBL Kisumu brewery, whose construction commenced in mid-2017 has resulted in an increase of the company’s contracted sorghum farmers to 47,000 in Kenya and the creation of 100,000 jobs both directly and indirectly.

Oduor-Otieno is currently the chairman of Kenya Breweries Limited and UDV (Kenya) Limited both subsidiaries of EABL Group as well as the Board Audit and Risk Committee.

EABL Group managing director Andrew Cowan said Muchene will be remembered for made tremendous contribution in expansion of the company’s operations across all the markets it operates.

“Charles has made a huge strategic contribution as a leader in this business and is leaving EABL on a sound footing. His great insights will continue guiding the leadership in shaping the business for the future,” said Cowan.

He holds an honorary doctor of business leadership degree from KCA University, executive MBA from ESAMI/Maastrich and Bachelor of Commerce degree from the University of Nairobi.

He moved into leadership consulting and coaching after serving as the Chief Executive Officer of Kenya Commercial Bank (KCB) for nearly six years, and was also the CEO of KCB Uganda Limited, KCB (Tanzania) Limited, KCB Sudan Limited and KCB Rwanda SA.

Before joining KCB, Otieno worked for Barclays Bank for more than four years, where his roles included Head of Reporting and Compliance for the bank’s Africa Regional office in Johannesburg.

He also served as Treasury PS and is currently an independent leadership and governance advisor as well as an executive coach.

The Kenyan government honored him as a Chief of the Order of the Burning Spear, in recognition of his work on national development.