JPMA sweetens Tumaz Sh27.6b bid for Mumias Sugar
Tumaz and Tumaz Enterprises, the firm associated with Mwale City investor having topped bids to run the troubled Mumias Sugar for 20 years has tapped consultancy firm, J P Mukherji & Associates (JPMA) in the deal.
Tumaz said yesterday it had hired the Indian firm in a move industry insiders say is likely to favour the bid since JPMA runs Nigeria’s Dangote Sugar refinery Plc.
The sugar and allied industries consultancy comes with a long history in the sugar industry.
Tumaz and Tumaz Enterprises placed the highest bid Sh27.6 billion for the leasing of Mumias Sugar Company, beating billionaire Rai family and steel mogul Narendra Raval last month.
Raval, through his Devki Group, offered Sh8.4 billion while Rai under his West Kenya Sugar offered Sh3.5 billion in a tedious process the miller’s Receiver Manager P.V. Rao now awaits technical and financial evaluation before a winning bid is publicly declared.
Famous bid withdrawal
Devki Group founder Narendra Raval had famously withdrawn his lease bid in May this year saying the exercise had been obstructed by politicians.
The matter would later end up at the Senate’s Agriculture Committee which directed the receiver-manager Pongangipalli Rao to re-advertise the bids within 14 days.
Tumaz and Tumaz Enterprises topped the bids in its offer to run the troubled miller for 20 years that if successful could see the miller return to full operations.
The Indian-company JPMA has also been a consultant and manager for a number of sugar factories across the world including Saudi Arabia, India, Ethiopia, Uganda and Tanzania.
Indian deal sweetener
Mumias Sugar receiver-manager Ponangipali Rao said a total of eight bidders submitted bids to lease the troubled sugar factory.
Other bidders who submitted their bids include Kruman Finances associated with French and Turkish investors, with a Sh19.6 billion bid for a 25-year lease, and Transmara Group (Sarai) with Sh11.5 billion bid for a 20 year lease period.
Pandhal Industries bid in a Sh9.7 billion proposal over a 20 years lease while Kibos Sugar bid came in at Sh8.8 billion.
A Mauritius-based company, Sucrie Des Mascarelgnes Ltd also participated in the October public bidding exercise but failed to disclose the value of its bid.
Mwale said he will offer the farmers Sh2.2 billion through Mumias Outgrowers Company (MOCO) as an incentive to resume sugarcane growing.
JPMA was in 2014 consulted for the establishment of Kwale Sugar Company and is presently ranked one of the largest sugar projects responsible for upgrading Dangote’s factories to crush 24,000 tonnes of cane per day from 6,000 tonnes per day.
The High Court had last month sanctioned the opening of tenders for leasing the mill after about a three-year closure.
The process had been dogged by controversies that delayed the drive to revive the company that went down under heavy debts and inadequate supply of raw materials in 2018.