News and Press

D&S Group Chairman Alec Davis and Group CEO awarding managers at the 2022 management conference

September is the beginning of the Group year which traditionally starts with the recently held Annual Conference, an event that has morphed, especially through Covid, to take advantage of virtual communication so all senior staff throughout the Group can participate. The event also starts the annual Planning Process, a key discipline that has driven growth over many years. The Conference objective is to formulate strategy, this year the theme being 'the Future is Digital' as the Group looks to develop the many digital opportunities that are changing the world. An important feature of the Conference are external guest speakers and this year I would particularly mention two - Peter Njonjo, CEO of Twiga Foods and Julius Kipngetich, CEO of Jubilee Insurance, both of whom were inspirational in their perspectives.

Another Conference tradition is the Annual Management Awards and I must congratulate Wilfred Karisa, the D&S Diani manager for being selected as the Branch Manager of the Year. Commended managers were James Ngugi (D&S Rwanda), Patrick Mufwoya (D&S Uganda), Desmond Rao (Group IT Manager) and Linda Tata (D&S Ug), this year two overall winners being selected Ben Munyao, MD D&S TZ for the excellent performance of the subsidiary and Philip Holi, Group Technical Director for his leadership of this creative division. I'm very grateful to them all.

A major initiative this year has been expansion of the Kenya Branch network with 10 new locations developed bringing the total to 54, large by any standards. This month I was pleased to visit new branches in Lavington, Ngong and Ruaka, all of which are now doing good business and I commend Branch Executive Margaret Kuchio and Premises Manager Timothy Kemboi for their excellent work in establishing these locations. Expansion of the network continues and the objective is to have at least one branch in every county. We are nearly there and are proud to take our essential products and services throughout the country as certainly their availability and support fulfils our 'Improving Lives' purpose.

I conclude by mentioning our great concerns about the ongoing drought, especially in the arid northern areas. Climate change has contributed though of course droughts are not a new phenomenon and the region has periodically suffered. Development of good water resources is essential, especially in the support for human life and we at D&S are heavily involved in developing solar pumping technology that is a cheap and sustainable solution to alleviating the effects. We are presently working on several specific projects and are committed to making our contribution to assist in this terrible situation.