A photo montage of top performing CEOs of 2022
Business Focus has since 2017 recognised best performing Chief Executive Officers (CEOs) and Managing Directors of various companies in different fields.
Previously, recognised CEOs have been selected based on milestones of companies published in the media or shared in public spaces and analyzed by top business journalists in the country. However, in 2022, in addition to the above criteria, we also received nominations from members of the public/our readers. Many nominated CEOs didn’t make it to this list because the nominees didn’t provide convincing reasons.
It is important to note that top performing CEOs need recognition because a lot of things happen in boardrooms; key decisions are made and deals sealed; some of the decisions backfire and in the process, some industry captains are sacked. On the other hand, a number of CEOs overcome huge challenges to exhibit exceptional leadership that propel their organisations to greater heights and thus deserve recognition.
Business Focus recognises CEOs that are making huge impact on the organisations they lead. The recognition covers both the private and public sectors. They are selected from various fields including banking, insurance, real estate, media, ICT, manufacturing, agribusiness and more.
Importantly, both CEOs leading Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) and large companies are eligible for selection once they do extraordinary things to grow their businesses.
In no particular order, below are Business Focus’ CEOs that stood out in 2022. Read on!
Arodi is the Business Head/CEO at Uganda Baati. The results-driven leader with more than 28 years of experience in the steel sector in the Eastern Africa region, is credited for leading the company’s transformation that has resulted in a 300% growth in profitability, over the past five years.
He is also good at team building and empowerment which is partly why Ugandans have taken over 95% of senior positions in Uganda Baati today. There’s no doubt he will leave behind a strong team and culture that will guarantee consistent performance beyond his life at Uganda Baati.
Kawumi is Country General Manager at Interswitch Uganda. He was the most nominated CEO from the public.
Kawumi has grown Interswitch from a loss-making business to a profit-making business in the 3 years he has led this Fintech company.
For the very first-time last year, Interswitch posted a profit, and the trajectory has been on the upward rise since then. He has empowered a very young workforce that runs the Switch with minimal supervision, hybrid working environment where majority work from home and yet post growth results.
His stakeholder engagement in the financial services sector and his good relationship with the regulators is top notch.
He also has exceptional leadership skills and a great innovative mind.
He has no doubt built working solutions that are benefiting Uganda’s cashless economy.
Dr. Emmanuel Iyamulemye
Iyamulemye is the Managing Director at Uganda Coffee Development Authority (UCDA), one of the best performing Government agencies. Iyamulemye handles two important crops for Uganda- Coffee and Cocoa. He has built a team that is trusted by coffee and cocoa stakeholders. He also ensured that UCDA is one of the most crisis resilient organizations in Uganda. This is because the Authority handled well the withdrawal of Uganda from the International Coffee Organization and indeed the country’s exports haven’t dwindled. Under Iyamulemye’s leadership, Uganda’s coffee story has become prominent globally.
Juuko is the Chief Executive at Stanbic Bank Uganda Limited. She has kept the lender profitable amidst a tough economic environment characterized by COVID-19 pandemic disruption, spiraling inflation and other global factor troubles.
According to results released in early 2022, Stanbic made a net profit of Shs275.43bn in 2021, up from Shs243.12bn recorded a year earlier. In terms of industry market share, the bank – which is listed on the Uganda Stock Exchange (USE), had 27.5% of the total industry profit.
She’s achieved this by building a professional team of employees able to think and innovate products and services that are market aligned.
He is the CEO, Next Media Services, whose flagship brand-NBS TV continues to grow in leaps and bounds. With Kariisa at the helm, Next Media Services continues to shape Uganda’s media landscape.
The media house’s strategic partnership with international media like BBC has seen NBS produce some of the best selling stories. Needless to say, his media companies have continued to poach the best talent from competitors. All this has been possible to due to Kariisa’s wise and visionary leadership.
He is the CEO at Great Lakes Safaris, a tourism and travel company. Wekesa has relentlessly marketed Uganda as a top tourist destination. He has also inspired many people into business through his regular posts and tweets about business management.
He has also empowered his staff to execute business duties even when he’s not around. Wekesa has also expanded into value addition in agricultural sector.
He is the Managing Director at Centenary Bank, an indigenous bank that has consistently performed well.
Centenary Bank is Uganda’s second-largest bank by deposits, lending, assets and profitability. The bank was named Uganda’s Best Retail Bank 2022 in the Global Banking and Finance Awards. Under Kasi’s leadership, the bank has been innovative and free from major money related scandals.
He is the CEO at Volcano Coffee Ltd, a company that adds value to Uganda’s coffee. He has also inspired many into coffee drinking. The company recently ventured in a commercial grinder and a roaster that has come with jobs in addition to making coffee value addition easy. Katabazi also trains baristas. He recently introduced coffee packs for the low end market that go for as low as Shs500. This will greatly contribute to the growth of domestic coffee consumption that remains below 5%.
Zephaniah Kameli Bwambale
Kameli is the Managing Director at Musingika Tourism Company Limited, a growing social enterprise/Startup.
He is a young innovator and entrepreneur highly experienced in tourism and business management. He has worked with the leading destination marketing organizations such as Kasese Tourism Investors Forum (KTIF) and event providers to create accessible and engaging story guides around Rwenzori and Uganda so that users can make informed and independent decisions. Kameli is the Best Travel writer in Rwenzori Region and is among the Top 20 Uganda Travel writers who were declared at the Uganda Uncovered Travel writing competition at World Tourism day 2022 at Speke Resort Munyonyo in Kampala, Uganda.
Kameli is one of the youngest tourism personalities embarking on creating a tourism conscious community through community tourism events such as Baboon Tourism Football Tournament held in February 2022, the Kasese Town Hill Trip held in September 2022 and the famous Mbunga Bughalitsa Hiking Tour held in October 2022. He is also the spokesperson of the Rwenzori Theluji Festival which featured Rwenzori Marathon, Miss Tourism Rwenzori and Rwenzori Investment Summit.
Kameli also presented a youth led investment proposal by Musingika Tourism Company Limited that won USD 390,000 at the Uganda- European Union Business Forum (UEBF) through pitching and profiling.
Popularly known as Madam CEO, Arinda is the brain behind Jada Coffee. Those who nominated her said she has passionately marketed Uganda coffee as the best among her followers on Twitter. She has no doubt inspired many youth into drinking coffee, thus contributing to the rising domestic coffee consumption in the country.
He is the CEO of Big Choice Connections. From selling cow skins, he started Big Choice Connections with four branches dealing in electronics in West Nile. He is the top partner of Multichoice Uganda in West Nile.
Katamba has been the Chief Executive Officer at dfcu Bank until January 2023. He has seen dfcu bank remain resilient and well capitalized despite the ‘complicated’ acquisition of Crane Bank. He came through with a new customer obsessed strategy. In 2022, dfcu achieved a good leap forward on the core metrics with robust growth in total income and continued reduction in operating costs.
Mwirigi is the founder and Chief Executive Officer at Capital One Group, a Public Relations and Communications firm. He has built a very competitive company within 3 years that recently won the Top 100 Brands in Uganda 2022. The company has also provided great innovative solutions to clients within a short period of time that they have been in existence.
Onyutta is the Managing Director at FINCA Uganda. He has grown through the ranks from officer to CEO. His journey inspires the team he leads. Many employees have to emulate him and his passion for the job. Importantly, he has kept the financial institution growing despite the tough economic environment.
He is the Chief Executive at Inspire Africa Coffee. Through his company, Tugume spent much of his time in 2022 marketing Uganda’s coffee abroad. He has marketed Uganda’s coffee as a unique brand in the US, UK and Asia. He ended the year on a high by launching the Inspire Africa Coffee processing factory in Rwashamaire, Ntungamo District. The factory which will add value to Uganda’s coffee was commissioned by President Yoweri Museveni.
John R. Musinguzi
Musinguzi is the Commissioner General at Uganda Revenue Authority (URA).
Despite the tough economic environment, Musinguzi and his team have done a commendable job of tax collection and improving compliance among the taxpayers community.
URA registered net revenue collections of Shs5.418 trillion against a target of Shs5.13trillion from July to September 2022. This resulted into Shs286.44 billion surplus. Most importantly, Musinguzi has created harmony among staff. There are no reported fights among the top leadership of URA. As a result, URA under Musinguzi’s leadership is yet to register a big money related scandal.
He is the Managing Director at Housing Finance Bank. Under Mugabi’s leadership, the bank has continued to champion affordable housing in the country. The bank’s dominance in the Housing Finance sector continues with its consistent command of over 60% share of mortgages in the country.
In 2022, the bank introduced the Zimba Mpola Mpola ne Incremental Housing Loans campaign to enable Ugandans to access affordable home financing. About 60% of Ugandans build incrementally because many do not have the money to buy a house outright or build one in 6 months. The Zimba Mpola Mpola ne Incremental Housing Loans enable aspiring homeowners to overcome this challenge. The bank has also introduced new products aimed at serving customers better. Mugabi has also seen the bank’s asset base hit past the Ugx1trillion mark, a feat achieved by very few banks, let alone HFB being the only indigenous bank in this class after Centenary Bank.
He is the CEO and the brain behind Prof Bioresearch, a manufacturer and supplier of standardized herbal extracts from Aroma plants, trees and grass, phytochemicals and alternative healthcare products.
He is also mentoring other Managers in the company through scholarships in the line of Bio Research
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