Tuesday, March 5, 2024

Rajan Mahtani Loses Cement Firm To Ventriglia Family

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Dr Rajan Mahtani Zambezi Portland Cement Chairman
File:Dr Rajan Mahtani Zambezi Portland Cement Chairman

Forbes, through its contributor, Mfonobong Nsehe, reports that Zambian multi-millionaire entrepreneur Rajan Mahtani has lost ownership of Zambezi Portland Cement, a leading cement manufacturer in the southern African country, as the High Court of Zambia awarded full ownership of the company to the Ventriglia family of Italy on Monday.

The resolution follows a 10-year court battle between the Ventriglia family and Rajan Mahtani, a Zambian businessman of Indian origin. Mahtani had always claimed that he owned a 58% controlling stake in the business as payment for organizing financing for the Ventriglia family years ago, but the Ventriglia family insisted that he had no claim to the stake, asserting full ownership of the company.

The Ventriglia family is one of the wealthiest and most powerful business families in Zambia today. In 1957, the patriarch of the family, Antonio Ventriglia along with his wife and children arrived Zambia from Italy. They established a Terazzo company, Ital Terazzo, which eventually became very successful. In an effort to diversify their investments in Zambia, the family decided to venture into cement manufacturing, establishing the Zambezi Portland Cement Company.

The family approached Rajan Mahtani, a popular financier and business mogul who was a family friend to the Ventriglias, and asked him to help arrange financing for the new cement company. Mahtani, who was the Chairman and controlling shareholder of Finance Bank, Zambia, used his influence to syndicate a $100 million loan from the European Development Fund and the Kenya’s PTA Bank. In return, the Ventriglia family orally agreed to sell a 49% stake in the cement company to Rajan Mahtani’s investment vehicle, Finsbury Investments, for a discounted price of $60 million – an amount Mahtani never paid. The Ventriglia family soon needed additional financing in order to increase the cement plant’s capacity and Mahtani was on hand to help arrange an additional loan, in return for an additional 9% stake in the company for a discounted price.

Even though Mahtani never paid for the shares he orally agreed to buy, he allegedly fraudulently procured his company secretaries to alter the register of Members and filed with Zambia’s Registrar of Patents and Companies Registration Agency (PACRA) a fake photocopy of share transfer certificates indicating that he was a member and shareholder in Zambezi Portland Cement. The Ventriglia family has insisted that they never transferred the shares to Mahtani’s company. On Monday, the court ruled that Mahtani had indeed falsified share transfer certificates in the company, and as such did not own any shares in Zambezi Portland Cement.

“Mahtani has been unable to produce the original signed copies of the share transfer certificates because they simply do not exist and he never paid for the shares. As such, complete ownership of the company firmly rests with the Antonio Ventriglia family,” a spokesperson of Zambezi Portland Cement confirmed to this reporter via email.

Rajan Mahtani, 70, is one of Zambia’s most successful, yet controversial businessmen. He was previously the controlling shareholder and chairman of Zambia’s Finance Bank before it was acquired by Bob Diamond’s Atlas Mara in 2015. In Zambian businessman Chisanga Puta-Chekwe’s acclaimed book, Cobra In The Boat: Michael Sata’s Zambia, he claims that Mahtani brokered a controversial deal whereby the Zambian Government sold off the state-owned Konkola Copper Mines Plc, one of Africa’s largest integrated copper producers (and a company easily worth hundreds of millions of dollars), to Vedanta resources controlled by Indian billionaire Anil Agarwal, for only $25 million, a tiny fraction of its real value.

Rajan Mahtani did not respond to an email requesting for comment at the time of publishing this story.

Source:Forbes

47 COMMENTS

  1. This story is older than three days, the judgement has even been appealed against. The news now is about the appeal.

    • This is how these crooks like Mahtani used to grab businesses…you go to his bank for assistance he sees an opportunity takeover your business.. alot of people have not been so lucky. Only in Zambia can a vile crook like Mahtani can still walk the streets freely.

    • You are the one who is behind the case is over, no such thing as appeal, Rajan has been a shade character for a long time.

    • Mahtani is not a poor chap. He is a crook.
      Stole from Late Puta’s family (Mr. Puta was a shareholder and director of Finance Bank)
      Stole from Late Wadood’s family (Mr. Wadood was Managing Director of Finance Bank)
      Stole from Mr. Savior Konie (Mr. Konie was Managing Director of Professional Insurance)
      Stole from Mr. Fearon (Mr. Fearon was Managing Director of Finance Building Society).

      As for Zambezi Portland Cement, Money Launderer Mahtani’s partner in crime, Mr. Barkat Ali issued a fake letter that Rajan had brought in 5 million US dollars as capital and got a loan approved on that basis from his corrupt friend Michael Gondwe (then President of PTA Bank).

      Rajan is a money launderer. He steals tax from the UK, Canada, Zambia through his sister Schultz and girl friend Craven…

  2. This Mahtani guy is greedy. People are blaming HH for having sold KCM for 25m. But it appears this guy was all behind the undervaluation.

    • Because he was Ba Satas friend kaili so the PF spin doctors will always prefer HH mentioned in the sale of mines. It is good when such revelations happen hopefully some people see that selling a mine was not like vending imbalala by the roadside…..But the whole idea is so easy to sale to the gullible and simple minds of most voters that HH sold all the mines. Unfortunately it is a “Good” political strategy from the PF though. It is up to the UPND and HH to “unspin” it. But i dont expect supposedly educated people to believe this …please leave it to the uneducated gullible

    • HH was not involved in the later sale of KCM. I don’t like HH but I wouldn’t allow people to falsely accuse him. HH was involved with Anglo-American the first buyers of the company. It’s if anything Levy Mwanawasa who should take the blame.

    • This thug sold KCM in exchange for $50,000,000 commission for himself and another $25,000,000 for Maureen Mwanawasa.

  3. Justice has been served. Mahtani’s list of controversies go back when he swindled the Zambian people through that Carrington maize deal and used Nawakwi and M’membe to divert the blame on FTJ. Who can forget writing off a $4m loan for Mutembo Nchito in exchange for a Nolle Prosequi after a court had bonafide evidence that he forge a judge’s signature?? Mahtani is a hardcore white collar crook whose luck has run out after manipulating previous presidencies to his advantage. Waloba ilyauma. Justice for the Ventrigllias and congrats!!

  4. The chap should spend his retirement in a Zambian Jail. That’s what he been sowing all these years.

  5. Mahtani’s crookedness goes back to the time he swindled the late Humphrey Mulemba who had entrusted him with ill-gotten wealth from the late Tiny Rowland.

    • And when he is in trouble he jumped on a plane to UK …using his British passport. The man is vile and evil…there is nothing inspirational about his richies he is a sick petty little crook..am surprised he is still alive after so people he has crossed.

    • @8.4 jay jay he owned Lonhro group of companies. A crook. I think he even wrote a book about how he stole wealth from Africans. You can google the man.

    • Thanks …I have just read about him on Wikipedia…apparently in 1996 President Nelson Mandela awarded Rowland the Order of Good Hope, the highest South African honour..really laughable.

  6. Zambian are so useless and lazy that even news happening under their noses they have to read without shame in Forbes, through its contributor, Mfonobong Nsehe.
    This Mahtani is a big crook …there he is taking things to court based on oral agreement…these are the people involved in selling KCM for a song to his Indian friend Anil.

    • The perennial doomsayer …Come see what your friends are doing here in Zed…i was there dude…always berating Zambia from the diaspora…when i cam back home, was shocked to see how young people were moving forward with businesses, savings, property etc…

      Dont be led on by social media sir….

    • Who’s berating who? Have you read what I have written ..always the same fooools posting comments and changing their silly names?

  7. So it was a Zambian of Indian origin who crooked the people of Zambia to sell the mine to his fellow Indian for a song and not the Tonga man from bweengwa.No wonder Some one said lies have no legs to stand on.

    • In addition, it was Mathani who took J&W investment to State House in February 2004 and took Baluba Mine away from First Quantum. That move shaped the future of Luanshya town!

  8. Zambians must apologise to HH for falsely accusing him of the sale of KCM to Indians for a song.

    HH, I Chitapankwa Allepo Trump do tender in an apology for falsely accusing you on the deal. On behalf of all those who did not read, I say I am sorry. The only issue I have got with UPND now is the adoption of Charmaine.

  9. If he is found to have forged docs, let him be caged or deported to Kashmir. We are tired of chinese, Lebanese & Indian crooks hiding behind legal technicalities while abating rampant corruption

    • When he is about to be caged he jumps on a plane to UK…its from the likes of this guy I first heard of the term dual citizenship…then bribes top leaders in Zambia whilst there; as he can not stand UK he longs staying in Zambia where he is treated like a God.

    • He would never see the inside of a jail…he has too many secrets; this crook used to fund a lot of political campaigns!!

  10. The KCM sale was another of LPM’s frauds, apart from the Zesco deals. Rajan won’t let go without a fight. If both parties weren’t greedy, there wasn’t going to be all this, what’s wrong with these ba Zimandola? Those Italian mafia are supposed to be Mahtani’s employees because without him there wasn’t going to be Zambezi Portland nor Ital Terrazzo. KK is too old to reconcile them, maybe Tom Mtine, he’s another Zimandola

    • Ayatalloh Terrazzo started off as a small company when no one sold tiles especially marble tiles or roofing tiles in Zambia give credit where its due…Rajan was using his bank to find out weakness in your business and using that against you …this *****t has breached every banking law there is and he is still around because he is connected like a gun merchant. …before the Chinese money arrived Rajan was the go to guy for laundering money!!

    • KK gave up on Mahtani a long time ago. If it wasn’t for Rajan ‘s Mum, KK would have jailed him for a good number of years and deported him to the UK.

  11. The relationship between the Ventriglia family and Mahtani family is a business relationship. It centers on Zambezi Portland Cement Company. It is unlikely that the Mahtani family deserves to go away empty handed. Leave company shares alone. Focus on the loan facilitation process. Estimate the value of the facilitation process. What are the service charges for the loan? What is the average level of service charges in the financial sector? The Mahtani family needed to work with reliable lawyers when dealing with huge sums of money. But fees here seem a reasonable proposition for the Mahtani family to be paid to them by the Ventriglia family.

  12. The Itanian family owes Mahtani, $8.7Bn in facilitation and interests, a claim reads in part.

  13. First the Guptas are chased with their tails between their tun Nchafu. Now Mathani is about to face the new Africa. Kikiki I am loving this.

  14. Ati Banker. Worse than the neighbourhood shylock who appeared like owning the gleamy cars parked in yard. Now the mojo is gone. The Venitians just want their blood. Mahtani should do with palty return on his flesh sold to Bob and Co.

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