Kenya’s best, as he would call himself, Stockbroker and genius business mind Aly Khan Satchu has been suffered yet another blow after his own television show, The Smart Investor, was discontinued following his suspension at the stock market.
Who is this Aly-Khan Satchu that is no stranger to the limelight in Kenya? Satchu spent the last 12 years as one of the most active commentators on all things markets, economy, and geopolitics.
But as from October Last year, Capital Markets Authority (CMA) has changed every shred of decency that Satchu had, lets say have. CMA has been on Satchu, the University of Durham law graduate neck witch allegations of insider trading on the KenolKobil stock ahead of a takeover bid by French firm Rubis Energie.
Satchu, on his defense, has gone to court in a bid to clear his name and brand that he had invested much time and effort in Kenya’s financial markets.
Satchu’s successful image that portrays a sleek investor with a background in the City of London investment banks that is on CMA’s radar pinned on to the KenolKobil insider trading allegations that has captured the imagination of players in the market, due to the huge sums of money involved.
Satchu practiced his craft at Credit Suisse First Boston, Sumitomo Finance International, ANZ Investment Bank and Dresdner Kleinwort Wasserstein where he rose to head various trading desks.
And he could not have timed his entry into the Kenyan market better, coming in at a time when Nairobi Securities Exchange (NSE) was booming and when everyone with a shilling in their pocket was looking to invest in initial public offerings of companies such as Kenya Electricity Generating Company, ScanGroup, and Eveready.
Satchu, the self-proclaimed risk-taker wave hit the Kenyan market with a book titled Anyone Can be Rich: All You Need to Know About the NSE, which offered advice to investors on a wide range of topics — from selecting a stockbroker to picking stocks, avoiding investment euphoria to knowing when to exit a stock.
The book helped Satchu to launch his Rich Management platform, on which he is now an NSE data vendor although he says the platform transmits the data on the website for free and investment adviser targeting high-net-worth individuals.
He has also become well known for hosting the Mindspeak business club, where an array of industry captains regularly show up to share their wisdom, further marketing Satchu’s brand among the business community in the city. It has also helped that he has perfected the language of the market, always ready with a neat turn of phrase that signals he is a polished player in the global markets.
More than any other stocks agent in the country, Mr Satchu has latched on to the reach and power of social media to grow his brand and network, something he has not relented on even in the face of the allegations against him.
Satchu also a board member of Base Resources, the firm mining titanium in Kwale. The father of three, the elder two in UK universities and the youngest in a high-end private school in Nairobi, now faces a stiff battle to clear his name of the allegations made against him by the markets regulator.
For long KenolKobil has been associated with secrecy, allied to the nature of its long-time owner, the late Kanu era powerful minister Nicholas Biwott and this secrecy might be what is going to hit Satchu harder than he thought.
Well, Capital Markets Authority (CMA) is reported to have sounded a strong warning to Metropol TV, which has been running the show since Satchu was suspended from the market a month ago. CMA sanctioned Satchu from trading or holding any significant office in any listed firms at the Nairobi Stock Exchange (NSE) last month, following reports of insider trading.
Mr Satchu, the chief executive of investment advisory firm Rich Management, was slapped with a fine of Sh4.69 million, being the commissions he earned from the illegal trades, and serve a three-year ban after the regulator found him guilty of initiating irregular trading of the Nairobi Securities Exchange (NSE) listed KenolKobil’s shares ahead of last year’s takeover announcement by French company Rubis.
He was implicated alongside CEO and Executive Director Kestrel Capital Andre DeSimone, and Kunal Kamlesh Somchand Bid.
“CMA established that Andre DeSimone disclosed price-sensitive non-public information on the Kenol Kobil transaction on the sale of the 24.99 percent Wells Petroleum shareholding in KenolKobil to Rubis Energie SAS (Rubis) and the impending takeover to the two identified stockbroking agents,” CMA said while delivering the ruling.
DeSimone was fined Ksh2.5 million and disqualified from holding any office as a key officer of a listed company or issuer, licensee or in any other capacity in an institution approved by CMA for one year.
Things seem to be going it tough and getting, even more, tougher for Satchu, whose show has now been discontinued and his businesses too. The only thing that might be working for the Brit is the fact that he’s breathing.
Satchu might even collapse or go mad thinking about the 500 million insider deal he was masterminding with his cronies and not forgetting the money he used to tip investors to convince them to buy many shares of Kenol Kobil.