A visit to Leakey’s Auctioneers vehicle storage yard in Nairobi’s Industrial Area is met with a beehive of activities as zealous salesmen saunter along the lined up vehicles trying to make a sale.
They chat and haggle with unwilling clients, tagging along while inspecting the cars.
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One of the salesmen puts on a smack, tired face after a whole day without sealing a deal.
“There is a Toyota Sienta here. A seven-seater 1300 cc. I can give it to you if you can part with Sh570 000. Good for taxi business. You can try Uber with it,” the salesperson, who we withhold his name for fear of reprisal, urges this writer resignedly.
I try to haggle, but he stands his ground. “The banks are our client. They have brought all these vehicles here after failed asset finance deals with their customers,” he explained.
“The vehicles have been repossessed from those who can’t service their loans. The banks have given us specific prices that we can’t go below. They want to recover their money.”
Vehicles are not the only assets that are going under the auctioneers hammer in large numbers. Another spot check across mainstream newspapers show many adverts of land and houses in posh Nairobi estates up for sale as lenders go after loan defaulters to recover their cash.
Apart from the Industrial Area yard, Leakeys operates two other yards with a larger one located along Mombasa Road. “There are plenty of other vehicles for sale in our other two yards. You can go and check. We have more than 3,000 vehicles in the two yards,” the salesman says.Something remarkable about this Industrial Area yard is the huge number of commercial vehicles under the auctioneers’ hammer. Two Toyota Coaster tourist vans are up for sale.Next to them, two Isuzu FSR lorries, Mitsubishi FJX3 tipper, Mercedes Benz Actros Prime Mover and a Nissan matatu line up, they too up for sale. “All these are commercial vehicles repossessed by banks after failed businesses. The banks have […]