Tuesday, April 16, 2024
Meet the Founder

Eric Kinoti is Expanding Kenya’s Economic Influence in Africa

Eric Kinoti is an industrialist, philanthropist and entrepreneur of Kenyan descent, he was born in Mombasa, Kenya where he has gained massive recognition for his entrepreneurial endeavors.

Kinoti founded Shade systems EA limited in 2009, a million-dollar enterprise that has a presence in over 6 countries, he is also on the boards of several prominent East African companies.

Kinoti attended St. Martins Boarding Primary School, Abothogochi Academy, Nkubu Hih School and earned a Diploma in Business Management from Tsavo Park Institute.

As an attestation to his humble beginnings, after his college education, Kinoti worked as a cashier in a hotel in Malindi where he spent his day buying and distributing eggs around Malindi town and worked night shift at the hotel. Subsequently, he moved to Nairobi, where he distributed milk to hotels in the city.

He launched fully into entrepreneurship in 2007 with a capital of KSh 20,000 (about $200), when he started buying milk from Kinoo and Kiambu and supplying the city hotels both in Nairobi and Mombasa.

He saved up Ksh 60,000 (US$600) and borrowed almost US$20,000 from a Shylock in 2009 to set up Shades Systems where he ended up paying back the money with a million shillings (US$10,000) as an interest on the money. A decision he attests to regretting till date.

Kinoti said “I started Shade System Company aged 24 with only five employees and a seed capital of Sh60,000. I saw a business gap because this sector was predominantly controlled by non-Kenyans”. He was inspired by the need to build a business empire run by Kenyans for Kenyans.

Currently, Kinoti controls five powerful companies in Kenya and has been on Kenya’s government delegation to several international economic meetings. Asides Shades System, he is also the founder of Alma Tents limited, Bag Base Kenya limited and SafiSana Home Services limited.

Kinoti is a recipient of several awards in East Africa and internationally, he is the Kenyan youth patron in Kenyan Chamber of Commerce and has also received recognition as a youth entrepreneur from Kenyan president Uhuru Kenyatta.

He has appeared on Forbes Africa’s Annual List of 30 Most Promising Young Entrepreneurs in Africa twice, he was also awarded for being the Most Influential SME Personality in Kenya in 2014 at the Kenya’s SOMA Awards.

Since its inception in 2009, Shades System has expanded to various African countries such as: Rwanda, Somalia, Congo, Southern Sudan and Uganda. Eric Kinoti is relentless in expanding his tentacles in the entrepreneurship sector, he has in fact been described by the Sun news as “Warren Buffet of Africa”.

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