Who Owns BIDCO Africa? Bhinji Depar Shah Wealth and Business
BIDCO Group is one of the biggest manufacturing companies in Africa with branches in 13 different African countries. The company began in 1970 as a garment manufacturing company before switching to soap production in 1985. Six years later in 1991the company established an oil manufacturing company in Thika moving its headquarters to Thika.
The company would later become a conglomerate establishing branches in different counties as well as countries including Uganda and Tanzania. Currently, the company is the leading manufacturer of oil and soap products in Africa.
They have a variety of products ranging from, premium oils to vegetables, wine, yellow fats, margarine, baking powders, noodles, and other related products. Recently, the company launched an ultra-modern industrial park in Ruiru that saw the company invest billions of cash in the project.
But with so much success, the question most people are still asking themselves is who owns this company and how much is he worth? Well, we got all these answers and much more articulated in this article.
Who Owns BIDCO Africa?
Bidco Africa is a family-owned business founded by Bhimji Depar Shah, a Kenyan businessman, entrepreneur, and industrialist of Asian origin. Depar was born in 1931 in Mombasa, Kenya, and later moved to Nyeri where his entrepreneurial journey began.
His first business was a petrol station which didn’t pick up as he had expected. In 1970, Depar founded Bidco Industries Limited but at the time the company operated as a garments manufacturing company.
In 1985, Depar and his two sons found a new venture that was more profitable than the garments, soap production, As a businessman once an opportunity presents itself you seize it and that is exactly what Depar did as he switched from garment to soap production. They decided to seek for bank loans to start the business but banks denied their offer and they turned to family and friends who chimed in and pushed the project.
He operated the soap production company for six years before diving into oil manufacturing in 1991. For the oil manufacturing company, he found a new location which was Thika, and went on to establish BIDCO’s first oil plant. By 2014, the company has spread to other African countries making it one of the biggest manufacturing companies in Africa.
Currently, Depar serves as the chairman of the company while his son Vimal Shah serves as the company’s Chair of the board. Vimal Shah was initially serving as the Chief Excutive officer before stepping down in 2017.
Bhimji Depar Shah Family Wealth
According to Forbes’s annual ranking of Africa’s richest people, Depar has listed as the 31st richest person in Africa and he ranks in the top ten list of the wealthiest people in Kenya. As of 2015 his net worth was $700 million and by now it must have hit $1.2 billion (Ksh140 billion.)