By BUSINESS BEAT REPORTER
Almost exactly 52 years ago today in Nanyuki, a baby girl was born to parents who were hoteliers.
The couple already had three daughters, so a son would have been nice, but Shamsu and Malek Din welcomed their new baby with joy and love.
And from a sleepy village in Nanyuki came a woman who would go on to build one of Kenya’s best-known PR brands.
Gina Din-Kariuki, founder and chair of the communications agency Gina Din Corporate Communications, recently launched the Gina Din Group whose tag line — Shaping African Conversations — shows the intention to weave the African narrative into the continent’s homegrown brands.
The new group, which is made up of Gina Din Corporate Communications and IMC, a marketing communications company, already looks formidable.
It plans to increase its footprint in Africa by attracting global clients through its affiliation with Weber Shandwick, the award-winning and second-largest PR group in the world,
Gina is executive chair of the group, with Eddie Ndegwa being group CEO.
The launch came just a month after Gina spoke on the sidelines of the African Leadership Forum at the United Nations.
The theme of her speech at the event was re-branding Africa, and the continent was very much on-message at the colourful launch of GDG.
The launch included a mix of Nairobi’s movers and shakers from the corporate, NGO, diplomatic and government worlds.
The two cabinet secretaries who spoke at the launch — Phyllis Kandie (Trade, Tourism and East African Community) and Adan Mohamed (Enterprise Development and Industrialisation) — noted the impact Gina has made on Kenya as a pioneering woman entrepreneur.
Mohamed, who worked with Gina at Barclays Bank Kenya before she left to start out on her own, spoke of her courage to start her own firm and her commitment to raising her two children.
Gina’s daughter Natalya is a Rhodes Scholar at Oxford University, and her son Naythan is in his final year of high school.
Also present was Energy Cabinet Secretary David Chirchir.
Last year, Gina ventured into oil exploration with US-based energy giants Camac Energy, the only Black-led company quoted on the New York Stock Exchange.
“I am incredibly proud of Camac. They are an inspirational story of what a real African success story is,” says Gina.