Rita Kaveshe Named British American Tobacco Board Chair

Rita Kaveshe Named British American Tobacco Board Chair

Rita Kavashe, Managing Director at Isuzu East Africa

British American Tobacco’s Board has appointed Isuzu East Africa chief executive Rita Kavashe as its chair.

She replaces Mr. George Maina as a Director and as the Chairperson of the Board with effect from 31st August 2020.

Maina, served as a Non-Executive Director and Chair of the Board for nine years.

“He has led the Company through a period of major transformation, including overseeing the Company’s first step in its ambition to build A Better Tomorrow for its stakeholders. He leaves behind a much stronger and more sustainable organization,” BAT Kenya Managing Director, Mrs. Beverley Spencer-Obatoyinbo said in a statement.

Kavashe has been a Non-Executive Director of the Company since July 2020 when she joined the board and is currently the Managing Director of Isuzu East Africa Limited, the largest motor vehicle assembler in East Africa. 

“Rita’s appointment marks the first time in BAT Kenya’s history that it has had a woman chairing the Board.

It means that we now have 40% female representation on the Board – a significant step in furthering the Company’s Gender diversity agenda, following BAT’s adoption of the UN Global Compact in 2019,” Beverley Spencer-Obatoyinbo said.

She joined General Motors in 1995 and has held several key roles in Sales & Marketing, both in Kenya and South Africa.

She holds a bachelor’s degree in Education from Moi University and a master’s degree in Business Administration (MBA) from the University of Nairobi.

According to BAT Kenya Board, Rita’s rich experience in the manufacturing and private sector will be invaluable as they look to localise the manufacturing of the tobacco-free oral nicotine products through a KSh 2.5billion factory investment.

“The Board is confident that under Rita’s stewardship, alongside our talented employees, high-quality brands, and evolved corporate purpose, BAT Kenya is well poised to continue delivering sustained value to its shareholders and the larger economy.”