The Waterfront Mall is located on 50 acres of land with a man-made lake in Karen, one of Kenya’s high-end districts. The Wanjiku Muguku family, who began their entrepreneurial adventure as chicken farmers, established the mall in 2018 as the go-to leisure and wellness destination in East Africa.
Leah Wanjiku was a teacher at Githunguri’s Kagaa Primary School in Kiambu County when she met and fell in love with Nelson Muguku, a lecturer at a college not far from the Kagaa Primary School.
Muguku eventually became tired of lecturing and quit to join farming, much to the surprise of many people. According to Kenyans.co.ke, Wanjiku’s future spouse Muguku started a chicken farming business with barely Ksh2,000 ($14), two hens, and a cock. This was not a popular investment at the time.
He began his business in his mid-20s and married Wanjiku at the same time. After quitting her teaching career in 1963, Wanjiku eventually joined him in running the chicken company. They were able to purchase a 2-acre farm two years after establishing their poultry business, where they also built a hatchery with a 9,000-egg incubator.
According to Kenyans.co.ke, the farm, which changed its name from Star Ltd to Muguku Poultry Farm, supplied day-old chicks and eggs to people and big names like Kenya’s first Prime Minister Mzee Jomo Kenyatta (who reportedly consumed not less than two dozen eggs weekly) and the colonial era’s last Governor, Sir Malcolm MacDonald.
When Wanjiku’s husband Muguku died in 2010, he had bought a 6.08 percent share in a local bank before it was listed, according to the news outlet. For many years, the late billionaire was also the bank’s greatest private shareholder.
Wanjiku herself performed well in business. Aside from constructing the Waterfront Mall in Nairobi’s Karen estate, the former teacher also possessed a 0.9 percent share in a local bank valued at Ksh1.2 billion.
Only 23 women were featured among the 125 Kenyans worth more than Ksh3 billion in the 2018 Knight Frank Wealth Report. Wanjiku was among them. Furthermore, in November 2021, Kenyans.co.ke reported that Wanjiku was “ranked second on the list of highly trading women on the Nairobi Stock Exchange market,” noting that she was trading Ksh306.9 million at the time.
Kenya, as How Africa previously reported, is the top economy in East Africa, with many High Net Worth Individuals (HNWIs) who are industry captains, investors, business tycoons, and more. In Kenya, a few women distinguish out for accomplishing so much and competing competitively with their male colleagues. Wanjiku is unquestionably one of Kenya’s few wealthy ladies.