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Ailing Nakumatt hires firm to audit its books




Ailing Nakumatt hires firm to audit its books

A Nakumatt outlet in Nairobi. The retail chain is set to invite creditors once the review of its books is complete. FILE PHOTO | NMG 

Local accounting and audit firm Parker Randall, owned by former Mumias Sugar #ticker:MSC boss Coutts Otolo has won the bid to audit Nakumatt Holding’s books and report to the retailer’s creditors.

The consultancy firm has less than six weeks to prepare the struggling retailer’s books for the year 2017 to 2019.

The appointment of Parker Randal followed instructions by the High Court, which ordered that an audit of Nakumatt’s accounts be conducted by June.

The local audit firm, an affiliate of London-based Parker Randall, competed against 15 others to win the contract.

Nakumatt is set to invite creditors once the review of its books is completed in line with Justice Mary Kasongo’s March ruling.

The retailer’s administrator, Peter Kahi, will brief the creditors on the true financial position of the company and the way forward.

“The audit of Nakumatt’s books for the years 2017-2019 is currently in progress. The true position of the company’s financial health will be known once the audit is complete,” Mr Kahi told the Business Daily.

The court also extended Mr Kahi’s term as the administrator for one more year, starting January 22.

Nakumatt, which applied to the High Court to be placed under administration in October, 2017, had 62 branches across the east African region making it one of the largest employers. It was estimated to have 4,000 employees at the height of its growth.

At its peak, it had spread its operations to Uganda and Rwanda before a rapid financial meltdown under the weight of debts.

The retailer, now under administration, has shuttered all but six stores in Kenya.

Earlier last year, Nakumatt announced embarked on a business recovery programme dubbed Nakumatt BounceBack, an initiative supported by suppliers keen on seeing the firm back on track.

The firm has to date ensured optimum restocking of six key branches in Nairobi, Nakuru and Kisumu.

Nakumatt is eyeing a turnaround with the support of its stakeholders, with the help of administration which it says is providing it with the best opportunity to effectively restructure its business.

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