Deloitte chief executive Sammy Onyango to retire after 38 years

Wednesday December 6 2017

Exit Deloitte East Africa CEO Sammy Onyango.  PHOTO | DIANA NGILA | NMG

Exit Deloitte East Africa CEO Sammy Onyango. PHOTO | DIANA NGILA | NMG 

By VICTOR JUMA
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Deloitte East Africa’s chief executive Sammy Onyango is set to retire from the consultancy firm in May next year, bringing to a close his eight-year tenure.

Mr Onyango, who will have served the company for nearly 38 years, will be replaced by Ghanaian Joe Eshun.

“Working at Deloitte has been a privilege, nothing less, and I have amassed so many fond memories that I will treasure,” Mr Onyango said in a statement.

“As I turn the page to a new chapter in my life, I do so with much confidence knowing that I have left the firm in very capable hands.”

More than doubled

During Mr Onyango’s tenure, the advisory firm’s staff count more than doubled to 1,000 across the region while the partnership grew significantly.

“I’m pleased to report that what started many years ago as a strategy to advance our top female talent and create a more gender diverse leadership team is now firmly entrenched in our culture. Our female partners account for 35 per cent of our leadership,” Mr Onyango said.

The outgoing CEO told the Business Daily that he intends to take up large-scale farming in his retirement.

If he follows the path of his peers, he could also join the boards of major private and public companies as a non-executive director.

Individuals who have amassed decades of experience working at the so-called Big Four accounting firms including EY, KPMG and PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC) are among the most sought-after by companies out to tap their knowledge in various areas.

These include tax, audit, human resource, compliance and corporate restructuring.

Several boards

Mr Onyango’s predecessor Daniel Ndonye was, for instance, appointed to several boards including oil marketer KenolKobil after he retired in 2010.

Charles Muchene, a former executive of PwC in Kenya, has joined several boards including Barclays Bank of Kenya #ticker:BBK and East African Breweries Limited #ticker:EABL where he is chairman.

Mr Onyango’s exit comes as Deloitte marks 110 years of its operations in East Africa.

The incoming CEO, who has been the deputy since June 2006, has more than 25 years of professional experience.