Bitter sugar? Steel billionaire Narendra Raval withdraws bid to save sinking Mumias Sugar
Steel tycoon Narendra Raval has withdrawn his bid to revive the operations of Mumias Sugar Company.
Devki Group of Companies chaired by Raval had expressed interest in the loss-making miller with the aim of injecting Ksh5 billion into the company.
In a Friday, June 4 statement, the billionaire said owing to his deep understanding of local operations, he had expressed interest in the miller following an invitation by the Receiving Manager.
“However, given the ongoing public interest which the matter has attracted and the call for publicly run bidding exercise, we have found it worthwhile to take out our application,” Naval said in a statement.
Mumias Sugar was placed under receivership by KCB Group in September 2019 after the miller defaulted on Ksh545 million in loans.
The June 4 statement by Raval comes barely a week after leaders from Western Province called for openness in the handing over of the company.
Speaking on Thursday, June 3, Amani National Congress (ANC) party leader Musalia Mudavadi said the firm that will take over Mumias Sugar must have the goodwill of the people of Western Kenya.
''KCB Group which placed the company under receivership must be careful how it picks an investor to revive it because the person or firm that comes in will require the goodwill of the leadership, farmers and other stakeholders,'' Musalia said.
In his statement, the steel tycoon however noted that Devki Group of Companies would show interest should the bidding process be conducted in consultation with all stakeholders.
"We will however express interest, should the exercise be conducted in consultation with all the stakeholders," Raval said in a statement.