“Nandus” is a household name in the Gambia known for importing foodstuff and the generosity enjoyed by many senior, junior citizens and civil servants of the Gambia ranging from civilians to security officers.
Mr. Nandkishore Rajwani commonly known as ‘Nandus” is the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of Emkay Stores, a Indian business entity who came to the Gambia in 1992 and since then has been operating as one of the major foodstuff suppliers in the country. Mr. Nandus” is not only a business mogul but a philanthropist with a big heart having many positive impacts on the life of Gambians from all works of life.
Emkay Stores situated at Buckle Street in Banjul is also into Agriculture, civil engineering and housing Estates to ease housing burden on many Gambians. Emkay Stores is also into cashew export business thus boosting the cashew price at local level.
For thirty years Emkay Stores have been importing huge quantity and quality basic food stuff like, vegetable and sunflower cooking oil 20 litres, 10 litres, 5 lites and 1 litres, rice 50kg/25kg broken 100% and broken 5%, white sugar, sugar cube, tomato paste, different varieties of biscuit, spaghetti, macaroon, tin milk, condensed milk, tea bags and cafe, match boxes.
To expand their business, Mr. Nandu also ventured into Building materials of all kinds ranging from corrugated iron sheets, cap nails with rubber, decra corrugated sheet, cardboard marine, binding wire, barb wire, fencing wire, razor wire, aluminum doors, tiles of 60+60, 40+40, 30+30, and Iron rod 12 mm, 10mm, 8mm and 6 mm respectively.
All these food stuff and materials are brought in large quantities and of good quality and affordable price to ease the shortage of building and construction materials in the market.
Since its establishment in the Gambia to date, Emkay Stores employed more than 50 Gambians from construction, horticultural to official work and several casual workers at their Foni farm where onion is grown at a local level.
The horticultural garden in Foni Bondali is 1500 square metres and has in the last years produced more than 15 containers of home grown onions that were pumped into the market to reduce the skyrocketing of onion in the Gambia.
So far Mr. Nandu has hired technical experts to do a proper survey into horticultural farming to boost the growth of more onions and potatoes that will only be sold in the country.
In 2022 they produced more than 50, 000 bags of home grown onions.
The Everest Real Estate company is another subsidiary of their business that is building affordable houses in Kololi, Sanchaba, Pipeline and Tujereng.
CEO Nandu is also into the educational sector, and over the past three years has supported University of the Gambia (UTG) students’ week programme at Tendaba camp.
Mr. Nandu though a non Muslim, have paid a full package pilgrimage ticket including pocket money for their chief laborer to perform the last Hajj in Mecca, Saudi Arabia.
During the Covid -19 pandemic locked down, Emkay Stores have given more than D300, 000 to Gambia Chamber of Commerce and Industry (GCCI) to support Gambians.
The long good will hand of Nandu was also extended to Gambians during the infamous political impasse of December 2016, Nandu and family have given out dozens of bags of rice and cooking oil to displaced Gambians that flee to the Senegalese border to escaped the political chaos and were stranded at the border without any food.
The Gambian Parliamentarians are frequent beneficiaries of Nandu as many MPs were given donations to support developmental projects in their Constituencies.
On Fridays Emkay Stores is like a clinic where people queue to receive alms and charity from CEO Nandu in private.
In 2015 Emkay Stores was awarded by GRA as the most compliant taxpayer among all importers.