On Tuesday, 17th October 2017, Cytonn Investments held their Q3’2017 Company and Market Updates Client Cocktail at Villa Rosa Kempinski, Nairobi. The event, which was attended by over 500 Cytonn clients and potential clients, informed on the governance structure of Cytonn, the opportunities and the challenges Cytonn has experienced, and the current and future investment environment. The session was informative and the clients not only got a chance to listen from the various speakers, but were also given a chance to seek clarity concerning any issues surrounding the company, in an initiative from Cytonn dubbed “Open to Talk”, where we respond to all queries and questions in an open and transparent manner.
“We view this as an opportunity to keep our clients updated on the various initiatives that Cytonn is undertaking,” noted Edwin H. Dande, Cytonn’s Managing Partner & CEO. He further stated that Cytonn is always aiming delivering the most attractive returns to our clients, the highest levels of client service and engagements, while ensuring transparency in all matters that concern the firm. He, however, noted that every initiative will always have challenges and we must always know how to best handle the challenges brought about by these undertakings. Despite everything, he encouraged the clients to always be on the lookout for available opportunities. “The best time to invest is when the market is distracted,” emphasized Edwin. He therefore, encouraged the clients to take advantage of the election period to analyze the available investment opportunities and seize them. Edwin also stated that Cytonn has diversified its portfolio to include financial services, hospitality and education, so that it can continue delivering the best alternative investment solutions in the market.
Prof. Daniel Mugendi, Chairman of Cytonn Investments Board, took the clients through the governance of the firm. Recapping on how the firm has grown, Cytonn’s Board Chairman stated that employees have grown to over 250, with clients growing to over 2,500. He however noted the challenges the company faces, stating that, “With growth there comes challenges, and given the current operating environment the firm has had to put in more efforts to continue growing. Innovation continues to be our key driver and below is how we have been able to navigate the various challenges. First, the tough operating environment has meant that there are more opportunities for investment as the assets remain undervalued and so we have come up with new products, and secondly the inability to get talent has meant that we need to spend more time training, and though not an easy task, the internship programme continues. As we always say the best time to grow is when competition remains distracted and for investors this remains the best time to invest,” he added. In conclusion, Prof. Mugendi noted that Cytonn must aim at finishing strong as the year winds up.
Shiv Arora, Financial Controller at Cytonn Investments, took the clients through the company’s financial performance. He said that Cytonn’s holdings of listed equities through Quoted Privater Equity has grown, and contributed immensely to the improvement of the company’s balance sheet. “Our balance sheet has grown to Kshs 18 bn, a 50% growth from Kshs 12 bn at the end of 2016, with Kshs 14 billion in investment property, representing our 10 investment ready projects” noted Shiv.
Elizabeth N. Nkukuu, CFA, Senior Partner & Chief Investments Officer at Cytonn Investments, took the participants through the market updates. “Over the last 5-years, real estate has posted higher returns compared to the traditional asset classes,” she stated. She further added that the good performance is expected to continue due to key drivers such as the continued infrastructural development, rapid urbanization and population growth, and demographic trends supported by growth of the middle class. However, she noted that they expect Kenya’s 2017 economic growth to be slower than for 2016, due to slow growth in agriculture due to the continued drought, and the interest rate caps, which will reduce banks’ margins.
The event ended with a question & answer (Q&A) session where clients got to engage the various business leaders about the firm and their investments. As Cytonn strives to deliver the very best returns in the market, it continues to provide quarterly feedback to its clients through such platforms.