Shalina opens in Kenya, the end of a 35-year journey and the start of something great.
When Mr Abbas Virji took to the stage at a gala event at the Hotel Intercontinental in Nairobi recently, speaking to a large audience of key pharmaceutical role-players, there was a sense of history being made. Indeed for Mr Abbas, CEO of Shalina Healthcare (along with his sister Shalina Clifford), Kenya has a special significance. It is the country of his birth and the country where his father, Mr Shiraz Virji, founder of Shalina healthcare, first found his inspiration for a continent wide health infrastructure that held the values of quality, trust and affordability above all others.
Mr Shiraz Virji, himself Kenyan born and who spent much of his life in Mombasa, describes the Kenyan people as being kind and generous. It pained him that so many citizens were dying needlessly of curable diseases and cemented his vision to ensure that people across Africa lived longer and healthier lives. This dream would expand into 8 countries in Central and Western Africa, carried on by the able care and dedication of his children, Abbas and Shalina.
Kenya itself, as it turned out, would take just a little while longer. After 35 years, Mr Abbas Virji is finally able to take the stage and announce this enormous and sentimental milestone as the first Shalina operations in Kenya are officially announced, following the acquisition of PMC group a proud institution in Kenya. Their excellent reputation, perfectly suited ethically and strategically to be folded into the Shalina family of companies.
Abbas and his sister Shalina have big plans for Kenya and East Africa in general. The Kenyan audience are sophisticated and understand the value of a trustworthy brand that prizes quality and accessibility and is committed to a long-term outlook.
The enthusiasm at the launch was infectious and was reflected in the support of some 150 guests from pharmaceutical partners and government boards who will in some way or other play an important role in fulfilling the destiny of this 35 yearlong full-circle that is starting where it began as the seed of a dream for a healthier, happier African continent.