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Diaspora Matters

Trending Scams in Zimbabwe

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Zimbos are well known for being hard working and have a reputation for being honest citizens and a look at neighbouring countries shows that the population of Zimbos in jail is quite small. You will see them busy with entrepreneurship activities buying and selling goods and earning an honest living.

Back home our ranking on the corruption index is worrisome! The number of fraud and unethical practices being recorded is on the upward trajectory. Funds misuse from the National Aids Council has been trending this week and you can also add Cyclone Idai Disaster funds which are mired in controversy with allegations of misuse.

The low ranking on the corruption index is partly caused by economic challenges the country is currently facing resulting in many resorting to fraudulent activities. So what are the top scams trending in the country?

Bitcoin Trading: The good name of Bitcoin has been tarnished by fraudsters who ask investors to give them money and invest on their behalf. They come up with too good to be true investment returns and usually create Whatsapp groups where they fleece members of their hard earned income. Research more about Bitcoin and do not give money to anyone…kusungiriramari pagumbo rengwe!

Online Forex Trading: It made headlines in South Africa and the wave swept across the region like a cyclone. Promised instant riches for investors but however with time, the real beneficiaries of this scheme were forex trading trainers! Those selling forex trading signals or scammers asking investors to give them money so that they could trade on their behalf. See an online forex trading advert? Run away like Usain Bolt.

Employment Scams: The record high unemployment rate in the country is leaving many vulnerable to online scams. From processing fees for nurse training positions or visa and permit processing fees. Be careful of jobs in Dubai whereby employment seekers go through a telephone interview process and asked to submit qualifications. Employment contracts signed and submitted with job seekers asked to come to Dubai. The scam starts when a job seeker is asked to send funds to a visa processing company. After funds are submitted….zvavharana! Some even have legit websites such as Karum Hospital based in Dubai but when those based there try and verify the physical presence of the hospital-they often come with blanks. If a job offer is too good to be true and you are asked to submit funds….Run like Brian Dzingai.

Partnership Scams: This one is not easy to detect but many are counting their losses after investing funds in partnership businesses. Some with brilliant business ideas but unable to access funds from banks are getting ‘free capital’ from partners. Everything looks good on paper and you invest funds or machinery in the business but before profits are shared…you are kicked out of the business! Some may even steal material or withdraw funds to start their own separate businesses. This is the riskiest method of doing business in the current environment. If someone is not a close relative or friend, then increase your risk levels to 99%….even those close relatives cannot be trusted either, many have been left with broken hearts by trusting close ones. Someone comes with a partnership deal? Then run like Maria Mutola.

Real Estate Scams: The demand for urban residential stands is extremely high…after all we all want to own homes and stop paying rent. Scammers know about this and they come up with all sorts of adverts in newspapers and social media. To protect yourself 100%, do not buy residential stands from individuals or real estate agents. Wait for housing developments from reputable institutions such as CABS, FBC, CBZ, Fidelity Life etc. Our courts do not have any record of anyone duped by these institutions which have a reputation to protect. What you find in the media and the courts are people scammed after buying from individuals and real estate agents. Seen an advert from an individual or real estate agent selling residential stands? Run like Brian Badza.

Ponzi schemes: Who remembers MMM? That ponzi scheme that collapsed a few years ago and went down with more than US$6m of investor funds. They promised high returns and initially delivered…the delivery helped build trust and more were recruited and then the unthinkable happed. The scheme collapsed like a deck of cards leaving many with health problems such as high blood pressure and diabetes. The scheme is back once more but operated by locals. They create Whatsapp groups and ask for deposits and after Eco-cashing funds then its end of story. Seen any adverts promising huge return on investment? Then run like Mark Marabini.

Church Scams: Who remembers the resurrection fraud? Now that Zimbo man at the centre of the fraud should go into history books as the dumbest fraudster ever! The trust we have in churches is leading to many church leaders coming up with investment scams whereby church members are asked to invest in certain projects and get a good return on investment. Some buy bricks expecting miracle homes but we have no record of miracle homes ever built. Let’s put this on record…pay tithes and offerings, help in building churches and spreading the good word of the Almighty! However be wary of church scams, watch closely anything suspicious especially when asked to invest in anything with the promise of huge returns. Seen anything suspicious and your sixth sense raises a red flag? Don’t run away from the church though, remain seated and do not be coerced into scams!

Relationships Fraud: Digital platforms are the best place for relationship scams. Be careful of dating sites where gorgeous photos are posted especially by people who purport to stay in the developed countries. Some promise lovers a good life and processing visas and permits. They take their time in ‘falling in love’ and later try to send gifts but however there is a catch….you have to send monies for transportation fees. Uchingotumira mari…rudo rwapera, phone unreachable! Fallen in love over the net and asked to send any money? Then run like Julia Sakala.

DSTV Payments: Difficulties in paying DSTV subscriptions has opened an avenue for scammers. Their modus operandi is a simple one, transfer funds to connect to the DSTV services and then disappear into thin air! Seen any DSTV adverts? Your option is to ignore or run like Tendai Chimusasa.

Agriculture Fraud: Did you witness the hilarious fraud that took place a few months ago? A farmer bought broiler chicks in Bulawayo and invested heavily in his poultry project. With high expectations of a huge return on investment, the farmer fed the chickens, bought feed and chemicals but there was something amiss. The chicks kept on feeding eating tonnes of feed but there was little growth! Alarmed by the non growth, he consulted experts who examined the chicks and told him he had been scammed! Be wary of agriculture scams selling unbranded products…it can be extremely costly. Buying chicks, fertiliser, cement or seedlings from the road? Stop and run like speed boat.

There are more scams in the country, just be on the lookout. Any new opportunities, anything too good to be true or promising fast returns? Then keep running….

Do not miss out our book on business opportunities coming out in May 2019. We have also included risk management experiences in our SA book. Yes there are plenty of business opportunities around us but we need to be vigilant on risks.

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Diaspora Matters

How to set up a great website

website

Getting a website is the fastest way to increase your brand awareness. Come to think of it, there are millions of people who are exactly in the same business like you and some of them established their businesses eons ago. So how do you compete for a market share when you started operations last week? Get known digitally and the good news is that its not expensive.

Scout for reputable IT companies that do websites and shortlist them. Do not just get one website developer and give them a job…look for at least 3 website developers and tell them that you are considering recruiting one of them.

Have own website development plan

Before engaging an expert, you should be  aware of what your objectives are such as;

Being known and improving brand awareness

E-commerce; you could be looking at setting up an own online shop to sell products and services

For many starters, they may just tell a web developer to set up a site without an idea of what exactly they want to achieve. Look around for great websites in the industry where you operate. Do not restrict to local benchmarks, try neighbouring countries and even in the developed world and check trends.

Involvement in development

A mother who carries a baby in her womb for nine months develops one crucial aspect…emotional attachment to her baby. When a website is developed in your absence and delivered to you-it becomes like a mother who does not carry a kid in her womb for nine months….the attachment is not as close. So be involved in choosing colours and layout. Ask for opportunities to try out the design on your own and observe closely mistakes which you will make and the corrections that will be done. Also research on Youtube how to develop websites and also bring ideas on how you want your website to look. This attachment helps to make your website up to date…you wouldn’t want to throw away your baby you would have carried in your womb for nine months!

Website Training

After a website has been set, your developer should provide you with training on how to run it. DO NOT FORGET THE PASSWORD! About 99% of entrepreneurs forget website passwords and this result in website with no updated material. Your money can be thrown down the drain if you forget your password. Get notes on updating your website and crucially, develop a schedule of updating it. Once a month not bad. Update your site with material such as posts on your blog and photos.

Website developers’ weaknesses

Most website developers are not business people and may not appreciate your needs.

Most website developers leave out a blog section and this is a great disadvantage as some traffic to your website can be brought through content you would have put on your website.

No digital marketing training; a website developed without accompanying digital marketing training is like a sitting duck. You need to appreciate digital trends, how to drive traffic to your site and measuring traffic responses. Check for these details before engaging your website developer. How knowledgeable are they about digital marketing? Is this covered during training? Do they have digital marketing experiences and references?

Enjoy

If you have not time to update your site then consider hiring experts for a limited period of time like the first 3 months-learn the ropes on updating the site and promoting it and then take over.

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Diaspora Matters

2019 Business Opportunities for Zimbabweans Book

solar

We finished the compilation of the 2019 Business Opportunities for South Africans early this month and have submitted it to publishers. Great resource guide for South Africans…the book took us exactly a year and covers opportunity analysis, entrepreneurship skills, emerging business skills such as digital marketing, big data and 4th industrialisation opportunities. Specific chapters include Agriculture Opportunities, Women Opportunities, Youth Opportunities, Services Sector Opportunities and Risk Management.

What is unique about the book?

You are not going to find any book that captures business opportunities for South Africans..

You are also not going to find any book with contributions of more than 1000 South Africans…

The Zim Book:

A follow up to what we started in 2018 when we published probably the most viral entrepreneurship  book in Zim history. It sadly leaked and social media blew up with copies circulating thousands of copies leaving us distraught. If we had managed to get a dollar each for every copy circulated then our objective of creating a pool fund for your business loans would have been achieved. We had our members in mind when we created the book.

So we are back again compiling the 2019 version and it goes a bit deeper than the 2018 version and is aligned to business operations. We do not just list opportunities but go deeper in analysing the opportunities, who is making money and how, the risks and analysis of the sector. In essence it becomes a book of business plans.

Our chapters include:

  1. Business Analysis and Discussions: You find a lot of material we already covered here and includes your input.
  2. Digital Marketing: We are passionate about access to markets and we introduced this topic in the 2018 version, we go a bit deeper with local case studies of successful digital campaigns. There is an addition of big data for entrepreneurs as well.
  3. Agriculture: A follow up to the 2018 book version and we cover other areas not covered such as tobacco farming, agro-processing opportunities and Zimbos farming on foreign land.
  4. Tourism: We take a cue from the SA book, this is a difficult field…you are not going to find a business book with tourism opportunities and yet this is a fast expanding sector where locals are restricted to the lower end of value chain such as taxis and curios. No skills on the big opportunities such as travel and accommodation, rural tourism and setting up linkages with foreign players.
  5. Mining: Due to space, we did not do justice to mining in our last book, this one goes deeper with an interesting mining value chain analysis, stories and case studies.
  6. Youth Opportunities: We are passionate about youths who are graduating but finding no jobs. We take various topics from the SA book and locally cover inspiring stories of young entrepreneurs, opportunities in the 4IR and include skills not covered at college level.
  7. Women Opportunities: Women form the bulk of our members and we had an excellent chapter in our debut book, we include more stuff covering cross border activities, our tours to the region and interviews with our members based on foreign land.
  8. The Services Sector: Zimbabwe possesses great human capital and we have the potential to be a regional hub but we are not tapping into plenty of opportunities presented on the global landscape. ICT, Transport, E-commerce, Regional Retail and others. We like our members to have a global mindset and follow trends across the globe.
  9. Rural Opportunities: A new addition this tackles opportunities in rural and peri-urban areas. About 70% of the population live in rural areas but there are few to no resources available to rural entrepreneurs. It covers the traditional opportunities but then inspires rural entrepreneurs to do more in areas such as energy, agro-processing, arts and crafts, tourism, health and ICT.
  10. Risk Management: We feel we did exceptionally well in the SA book covering risks that entrepreneurs face. More emphasis on digital risks and we include some of the cyber crimes people are experiencing in emerging opportunities such as Online Forex Trading, Bitcoin and E-commerce.

We keep the book short and sweet with a maximum 150 pages condensing all the opportunities, analysis and discussions. Expect a lot of your contributions to be covered. We keep the language simple, flowing and interesting. Business books are mostly boring especially to those with no keen interest in business…so we entice them with interesting stories, jokes…written in Shona, Ndebele and a bit of slang too…we keep it to the street level…not too formal.

So a great contribution to the local entrepreneurship landscape….expect the book by end of May 2019. So 10 chapters, 10 areas we are passionate about-this is our contribution to an area where you find few resources published by Zimbabweans.

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Diaspora Matters

Biggest Ready Online Market in Zim

mariket

We have solved the issue of forum members who advertise on Facebook platforms and struggle with getting a market. On a weekly basis our forum consolidates ads on our pages and these consolidated ads get an average of 20.000 views according to stats.  To increase efficiency in sales, we have introduced posts whereby we ask members looking for goods and services to post and invite service providers to respond…a better way of marketing as you respond to a ready market.

Below are a sample of requests from our members, feel free to contact them.

Kundayi Gonese Anyone selling mannequins.. Zvikadzi zvacho lol.. I need one

Molly Makukwe Looking for a deep freezer ine reasonable price not dzemu firimu price please

Conellia Musitu Musitu Looking for a silent generator

Tapiwa Pahwaringira Looking for a partner at my small scale mine available is gold and iron ore. Very good gold samples am in need of compressor and mining consumables anyone interested please inbox me

Dudzai Chigume Looking for a table to share around harare cbd

Vimbai Wekwa Takawira Looking for a fuelsaver on a rent to buy agreement..

Fungai Hove Looking for mannequins, 1 lady and 1 kid. New or good second hand.

Fungei Cheetahcooneah Looking for the Zim flag bag


Lucy Mujuru Looking for heavy duty sewing machines

Sarah Sam Marewo Looking for ecd wooden furniture second hand

Natasha Kerrina Murape Need recommendations for a place that sale good second hand or brand new teak furniture

Trishell Stewart Am looking for a 55 inch samsung curve motherboard

Simbarashe Kachepa Looking for a room to rent in waterfalls or houton park

Tendai Mapako Looking for double lane industrial freezit making machine

Rumby Addy Mupita Tsambatare Looking for fix and supply of wall mirrors

Alice Gonese Need a strong hand or heavy duty mixer… neat and good working condition…app 0772326152..Harare

Helen Raviro Kasirori Looking for penurt butter making machine

Seth Emmanuel Looking for Plant Stemcells 263774826281

Yaya Rumema-Masora Looking for a second hand bed


Faith Nyika Looking for a preloved rug


Faith Nyika Looking for preloved corner couch

Samantha Tanaka Mapiku looking for a preloved or reasonable priced l shaped couch app me on 0771896649

Portia Mukarakate Looking for Staple gun

Sisae Nyoni Looking for someone who wholesale CPU,s or full desktop

Euvander Vambe Looking for $30 ecocash worth of bitcoin. inbox.

Vickie Chi Looking for 1 or 2 bedroomed cottage or flat around Avondale area. 0713484836

 Chido Olga Chisango Looking for a back windscreen for a Toyota Mark 2. Inbox or WhatsApp 0777140809

Marjory Mvura Looking for study desksand chairs

Paul Tariro Yotam Looking for office to share

Lucy Mujuru Looking for an external harddrive

Dominic Chimhundu Looking for gas machine to fry fresh chips & hot dogs

Petronella Vengie Garande looking anyone selling ladies nice blazers and tops

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Diaspora Matters

Challenges faced by small scale miners in Zimbabwe

diamond

We help entrepreneurs with a lot of resources and one of our major focus has been opportunities. What opportunities exist in Zimbabwe which can be tapped into? This website has a lot of them to inspire you. Our Facebook platform has covered thousands of opportunities since formation in 2015. Our various Whatsapp groups also add to our database of opportunities. On a yearly basis we publish books with a compilation of articles to inspire our members.

So how easy is it to run small scale mining operations in Zimbabwe? We asked our members the challenges they face in mining operations and below we feature their responses;

ZBIN Member 1:Hi in mining the deeper you go the more expenses you incur. So you need things like big pumps, generators, compressors and also need to mill on site. Capital is a major hindrance in mining projects.

Another challenge is management-most miners are not well versed with latest methods of management. They believe kuti chembere yepa Chegutu ine zamu one-mari yekuzorera.

ZBIN Member 2 :Finance to kick start their dream projects and also lack of equipment, machinery and tools.

ZBIN Member 3 : Working capital.

ZBIN Member 4 :The management method is a big issue because for one to inject capital on your project, you need to produce convincing production records or some kind of exploration work showing the potential of your mine and expected returns.

They are many miners who with proper guidance/ consultation/can be very successful. I think it is good for miners mining the same mineral to gang up and market their produce minerals like chrome, manganese and tantalite for export.

Buyers out there normally ask for reasonably big quantities which an ordinary miner find difficult to stack your small funds on huge quantities of product which you don’t have the capacity to produce as per international buyers minimum requirement.

I rarely contribute but I can tell you I’m learning a lot on the group about  mining, business and economics. I look forward to the weekend when great minds here would be discussing and explaining economics. Ndapota musandigumurawo mugroup.

ZBIN Member 5

1. Mining, Trading and export licences takes way too long.

2.MMCZ pricing formula for minerals is not competitive compared to the region.

3.Fuel is very expensive, production and transport cost therefore are also Uncompetitive

4.Rail infrastructure is broken,

5. Metallurgy department is incapacitated

6. Middlemen

7.There is no security of tenure,
8. Mashurugwi and corrupt police
9. Inconsistent policies are chasing away investors

ZBIN Member 6 :Apa I’m 100% with you. The change in policy overnight has got a lot of investors sitting on the sidelines or investing elsewhere. Pa policy pakaita clear a lot of things will happen here.

ZBIN Member 7 : For now I would say the current monetary policy/position has presented one of the biggest challenges for miners, and the economy at large. As an investment destination, Zimbabwe is categorised in the high risk zone. As such a lot of potentially huge projects are untapped.

ZBIN Member 8 :Kkkk mashurugwi ndicho chii?

ZBIN Member 9 : Mashurugwi they come and take staff rangu raive rine 80 grams.They are terrible, pa Saimona vakatema tema vanhu vaiva mugomba nemabhemba vakatora motoro ose
kwatinogaisira ndokuno fumurwa our results then they will come plus vanodyawo ne police so eish ma1.

ZBIN Member 10 :Ma shurugwi ane staera yavo vega. Up to today my head has scars to prove this😁
Eish vanhu ava ndevekumusha kwangu but hunhu hwacho hwatoenderera ndototya kushanda Midlands area.


ZBIN Member 11:Mashurugwi vanongosvika pagomba risiri ravo vodeedzera kuti chimbobudai timbopindawo and that’s it…ukada kuita nharo ipapo waparara.

Recommendation

These are just a few of the many responses covered by our mining groups with over 500 miners. The situation could be better if responsible authorities such as RBZ invest more funds in provision of support to miners such as literacy training, management courses, disaster preparedness, marketing, access to funds and machinery, security, company registrations, environment awareness and mining operations.

Simply buying minerals such as gold from miners is not enough, our miners are calling out for smart partnerships with relevant authorities so that they can professionally run their mining operations and help to create employment and improve the economic growth of the country.

Simply mentioning that we have disbursed $120m to small scale miners is not enough, we need to find out what more support miners have received and an improvement in their business operations so that issues such as the Kadoma Mine Disaster to not recur.

When authorities publish gold output figures, no one is asking them about the cost to the environment and the sustainability of mining operations and therefore questions should start to be asked on whether Fidelity is simply buying minerals without investing a penny on environmental issues. We need a restructure at Fidelity and other mining bodies and authorities.

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Is marketing a useless degree?

gra

With the debate on useless degrees raging, one of the degrees under discussion is marketing. Is it a useless degree? Does this degree add any value to the economy?

Here is answer

Marketing is the most important degree in business. Without marketing there is no business! Marketers help improve shareholders wealth through business generation…they bring the mula.

For most top students studying A level, getting 15 points and above means automatic entry to programs such as Actuarial Science, Accounting, Finance and Banking. Those with lower points opt for admin degrees.

Its rare to find a student with 25 points in commerce going for marketing. The profession is looked down upon but what is the true position in business?

If you do not generate wealth for shareholders, then you have secondary value to most shareholders. When it comes to choosing who to appoint as CEO, they look at a range of skills such as leadership, networking, project management and above all-the ability to generate wealth. Your skills and experience in generating wealth for the company (entrepreneurship). Does it now make sense why this profession has an advantage over others?

Do human resources managers add business value? Yes and Yes, they play a crucial role in managing the recruitment and utilisation of the greatest assets-employees. However its role is mostly support and therefore a company like Econet or Netone is unlikely to appoint an HR Manager as its CEO. The person should have a range of skills and experience and the most important one is ability to generate and sustain business growth…your ability, skills and experience in generating business.

Food for thought for support functions…excelling in your field of study is no longer enough…upskill and establish what qualities they look for in CEO positions.

How about entrepreneurship? Without a market there is no business. You can have all the capital but if no market exists then there is no growth. Your number one skill in business is identifying opportunities(markets), arranging resources to exploit them and generating business.

On your business plan, the section with the highest weighting is market. Do you have a market, do you have knowledge and experience in managing the market? Profits come from markets….they do not come from capital.

So do not venture into any business without full appreciation of the market. Assess your marketing skills and where you have gaps-plug them by going back to school, getting online marketing courses, hiring marketing experts or getting mentorship.

Pasina market…Paribe Business.

Pasina marketing skills…Paribe Business.

You may have witnessed a trending video of a tobacco farmer who is complaining about low tobacco prices and is demanding to be paid in forex. Who is doing all the sweat in tobacco farming? It’s the farmers and who is getting the lion’s share of tobacco proceeds? It’s the merchants….the marketers!

Marketing is the biggest business on earth and provides plenty of opportunities for graduates. The only challenge the country faces is that marketing is not tailor made for the informal sector. There are no brand names helping more than 5.7million informal sector players.

With the field of marketing going digital, there is no local college offering diplomas or degrees in digital marketing. Only Bindura University of Science and Technology is offering an online certificate in digital marketing. We hope they will expand and introduce degree programs in the field.

Most of the marketing graduates also do not possess digital marketing skills….room for improvement for our local colleges. Our forum made a regional digital record when one of our programs attracted more than 50.000 responses from across the region in a week. These were not paid adverts and resulted in us providing training and generating business in Malawi, Swaziland, Lesotho, Botswana, Namibia, Zambia and South Africa. We have travelled to most provinces in South Africa and even hosted entrepreneurs paying own transport and accommodation fees coming to our offices from across the region. We remain a regional success on digital marketing.

Marketing useless? No you need your head re –examined. Marketing is business; digital marketing is the future of business. Some professions realising the weakness they have when it comes to business generation, are now adding marketing to their programs. They are adding entrepreneurship skills too. They are realising that they will never be considered for CEO positions. They are realising too that their graduates will struggle if they join entrepreneurship field if they don’t know where to start when it comes to marketing.

Who says marketing is useless?

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Diaspora Matters

Ten Investors Smiling in Zimbabwe

miners

Its true Zimbabwe is going through economic problems with high unemployment rates, unstable currency, fuel shortages and low industrial productivity. To an outsider, its all gloom and doom in the resource rich country but a deep analysis of the performance of certain sectors shows that some are in fact smiling all the way to the bank. Some are even increasing their investment in particular economic sectors.

We all agree that the country has great potential, if the correct policies are put in place, if our political leaders agree to work together then an economic boom is just a few  metres away! We experienced this during the Government of National Unity period. A massive boost in business confidence resulted in an instant solution to forex problems, empty shop shelves, unemployment and economic recession.

Our easier path remains political engagement by our leading political actors. They hold the keys to our economic recovery. They can bring smiles to millions of Zimbabweans in the country and those dotted across the globe. We indeed can leapfrog some of the countries which overtook us over the past decades.

Human capital abounds in the country, we have a lot of untapped natural resources, generally peaceful and hardworking citizens, still possess good infrastructure in some areas, great climate and high entrepreneurial skills and interest.

We are currently operating far below our potential but who is shining despite the economic challenges?

  1. Telecommunication Sector: Its all good for the likes of Econet, Telecel and Netone. The increased use of mobile telephone is sustaining the business models by these telecoms giants and they are enjoying their time in the sunshine.
  2. Financial Sector: We have not opened new banks yet, we still encounter serious cash shortages and forex availability but our banks are not struggling at all. We even had Malawians grabbing the local Barclays Bank stake. The question is where are you diasporans? Why did you miss out on the Barclays Bank stake? With banks paying no one interest for funds they handle life is good for the financial sector. For new investors-do target bureau de changes introduction which require permits of US$15.000. If you can target strategic places such as borders, airports and busy cross border bus ranks then you will have a stake on the informal forex currency market. Figures released by the Reserve Bank showed that for the first 10 days, average forex traded equalled US$2.4m versus import requirements of US$19.6m. This means only 12% of import needs are being handled through formal means with 88% of the market being satisfied through the informal sector.
  3. Mining, Mining and Mining: In Zimbabwe if you want to follow the money-then follow the Chinese! Did you see the list of forex externalisers that was published early last year? Did you see the direction of the forex flows? The direction was East….our Chinese cousins involved in mining where spiriting away forex to their homeland. The Chinese are not involved in retail shops, not involved in kombi business. Certainly not involved in farming-they have a niche investment area-mining! This is where the greatest potential for new investors is…platinum, gold, chrome and other precious minerals. Gold output is at an all time high with the Reserve Bank having disbursed more than US120m to date and looking forward to disbursing more to small scale gold miners. Chrome miners around Midlands are not complaining about the effects of the bad economy, they are getting their hands dirty in chrome mining. Suppliers of inputs such as chemicals, equipment and machinery are increasing their investment in the area. The future of Zim is indeed Gold!
  4. Tourism: If you want to follow the direction of money in Zim, follow the Chinese and also our great white cousins. They know the economy better and they are putting their money in one expanding sector-tourism! Harare and Bulawayo can be shut down by violent disturbances but this does not affect much tourists visiting Victoria Falls, Mana Pools, Gonarezhou, Hwange and Kariba. On this site, we have published official tourism projection statistics. Search for the statistics and watch closely why investment in the sector is on an upward trajectory. Reading this section without a visit to our main tourist sites would not do justice to this article…pay a visit and see for yourself the acute shortage of accommodation in Victoria falls driven by the huge influx of tourists. There is an added advantage of tourists bringing foreign currency. We did a detailed report for our subscribed members on the sector. The tourism sector is the next gold and those closely monitoring and investing in it are smiling despite most of the people experiencing economic challenges.
  5. Construction: A visit to Harare, Bulawayo and other main urban centres shows that construction is at a standstill. New buildings coming up, no cranes to show serious economic activity like what you experience when you visit Maputo, Lilongwe, Blantyre, Lusaka, Maseru or Joburg. One day Harare and Bulawayo will roar again! However small pockets of residential housing developments are happening on the ground. Harare has a housing backlog of more than 500,000 and this is great potential for investors. Have you seen any hardware closing shop in Harare? Visit most hardware shops for a feel of what is happening on the ground. Beta bricks is opening new brick making plants-what are they seeing that the rest of us do not see?
  6. Alternative Energy: If you want to follow the money then Strive Masiyiwa is your main man. South Africa is experiencing power shortages, Malawi too, Botswana not left in the equation. Do you see the power gap? The sectors require heavy capital outlay and is facing pressure from increased population growth. Strive is putting his monies on the solar projects and we have every reason to follow his direction. To entrepreneurs based in RSA, form alternative energy companies that help install solar power and invertors for businesses and households…great business potential.
  7. Cross Borders: Your first point of reference is our import bill! What are Zimbabweans are importing and why? The absence or closing down of many companies has created an import gap for food, machinery and equipment. We do not have companies manufacturing cellphones, computers, vehicles, solar energy products and other products. Carefully study who is bringing food to Zimbabwe imported from Musina. Various cartels control the food import business and do not be shocked to see buses travelling from Beitbridge to Harare with less than 4 passengers but the buses will be fully loaded lol Kuti ko bhazi rizere neyi iri muboot repasi, pamusoro uye mukati….cartels who do not even visit Musina for imports but sending runners! Some cross border buses are now involved in money transfer businesses. You want to send money to SA? No need to worry, send it to certain bus companies and your relatives or landlords in SA will collect the cash in SA-no need for physical funds movement! With more than 3 million Zimbabweans resident in SA, the movement of goods is a multi- million dollar business earning some malayitshas up to R100.000 per month in revenue. For new entrants, form reputable companies that transport goods between SA and Zim. Do we need to mention import and exports shipping companies?
  8. Auto Industry Value Chain: Ever counted the number of cars in your street? The number of cars on the roads? Have you ever wondered who benefits from these many cars? It’s the auto parts industry dominated by Nigerians and Pakistanis. Zimbabweans need to harness resources and join this lucrative sector. Other beneficiaries of this sector includes insurance companies, mechanics and auto repair companies. Do we need to mention the fuel import sector?
  9. Entrepreneurs support: Have you visited Farm and City lately? Have you been to poultry companies that supply chicks and feed? If the target of your goods and services are consumers then expect low demand as people grapple with economic challenges in the short to medium term basis. Your business model should include supply of goods or services to people who want to earn a living! With high unemployment and a struggling economy….most people are turning to entrepreneurship for survival. Mention farming, mining, retail, transport etc. A person selling a kombi in Harare is likely to get more buyers than one selling a luxury car. One selling a tractor is at an advantage than someone selling sofas. Muhammed Musa gets more monies selling to tuck shop owners than direct consumers. The same model is applying to cross borders who are targeting entrepreneurs. A builder focusing on chicken runs has better chances than a builder of homes. A company that drills boreholes for farmers has a better chance than one focusing on homes. Fertiliser companies make more money because they are selling directly to people looking for money. Now this is a million dollar advice! Who are you selling your goods to? Analyse this thinking and you will see who is smiling in Harare!
  10. Global minded Zimbos: Zim experiencing economic challenges? Yes but is the situation the same with Malawi, Zambia, South Africa, Botswana, Lesotho and Angola? Not at all…some thriving, there is economic boom in Zambia and Maputo. Instead of starting businesses in Zim only, the trend is looking beyond the country and setting up businesses in neighbouring countries. Construction companies in Maputo and Lusaka, maputi making in RSA, farming in Malawi, buying clothes in China and selling in Namibia. Sourcing fruits and vegetables from RSA and selling in Malawi. Buying goods from Namibia and selling in Angola. Last time we were in Lesotho, we witnessed entrepreneurs who buy goods from SA and sell them in the country. The only challenge is Zimbabweans are now flooding the streets of neighbouring countries and this is not healthy in the long run. Every street in Windhoek has Zimbabweans selling stuff and recent media coverage shows our neighbours are running out of patience.

We hope we inspired you with some of the stuff we have covered. Do get a copy of our last book Business Opportunities for Zimbabweans which we published last year. Apart from many business ideas, we also included key contacts in DRC, Angola, Mozambique, India and Dubai. They key contacts can assist you unlock business opportunities in those countries.

Our next book will be coming your way in May this year and we promise a better and well researched output. We hope our leaders will take time to consider the impact of the challenges we are facing. The cross borders spending endless periods away from their families, cross borders sleeping endless nights on the buses. Zimbabweans sleeping on the streets in neighbouring countries. Thousands of graduates who have lost hope of getting jobs and many others.

We remain positive that something big is in the pipeline and our great nation will once more roar again.

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Diaspora Matters

Of Climate Change, Cyclone Idai and Entrepreneurship

idai

You have all seen the effects and impact of the Cyclone Idai….devastating impact to Chimanimani and Chipinge. It’s unfortunate that we have lost a lot of lives and livelihoods have been destroyed.

The cyclone wreaked havoc in southern parts of Malawi and the Mozambican side last week and this should have been a heads up of what was coming our way. Unfortunately we were caught unawares and resulted in some avoidable loss of lives.

Perhaps the poor response can be attributed to the fact that cyclones are a rare phenomenon in this part of the equator. The last devastating cyclone was Cyclone Eline in the year 2000. Cyclone Japhet was a follow up but the impact was not as severe as what we experienced with Cyclone Idai.

For risk management professionals, are you considering the impact of climatic change in your strategies? Do your risk registers include climatic change and natural disasters? When carrying out risk assessments, are you giving enough weighting to climatic change impact?

Are audit reports including this important area or the focus is strictly on financial transactions? Just check the social and economic damage done to:

  1. Hundreds of human lives lost in Malawi, Mozambique and Zimbabwe
  2. Thousands of livestock lost
  3. Farm produce lost
  4. Roads, dams, telecommunication and electricity infrastructure
  5. Irrigation systems damaged
  6. Bridges, homes, shops, clinics, prisons and  hospitals damaged
  7. Cost to education, school infrastructure destroyed, access roads destroyed

We are talking of damage running into hundreds of millions of dollars. Does this make sense why the issue of climatic change is finding itself in financial subjects? The drought experienced during the year is already another huge cost and a cyclone was the last thing we were anticipating! Add to this an economy which is struggling for recovery.

How many organisations had fully covered climatic change in their strategies? How many banks were monitoring the development of the cyclone over the Indian Ocean? How many had assessed the potential impact of climatic conditions on their business operations?

Econet, Telecel and Netone will have to repair damaged infrastructure.

Fuel companies will have to consider the impact of damaged roads and bridged between Mutare and Beira. We may potentially end up with fuel shortages in the country.

NGOs operating in parts of Manicaland and Masvingo will have to count losses to their programs as damages were done to clinics, irrigation systems, dams, agriculture and more.

If you had shops or farming activities then you were also hit with buildings washed away or collapsing. Tobacco farmers have their barns destroyed and crops as well.

So when considering investment, are you fully assessing all the risks? When crafting business strategies and models, are you covering environmental issues fully?

This is food for thought for entrepreneurs, the unfortunate part is insurance companies consider issues such as cyclones ‘Acts of God’ and therefore do not cover this area meaning businesses have to fully absorb the losses and write them  off their balance sheets.

We have also noted over the years that varying rainfall patterns are also increasing the likelihood of earth tremors in the eastern part of Zimbabwe. We expect more tremors or even earthquakes to follow Zimbabwe in 6-10 months time due to the impact of Cyclone Idai. The tremors may even damage more properties that would have been repaired or those not affected by the cyclone.

Is this risk on your radar? Does your organisational strategy include it? Does climatic risk feature prominently in your management and board reports? Are you discussing this for the first time? Correct the weakness and closely monitor emerging risks coming from environmental changes.

Meanwhile we would like to acknowledge the sterling work done by the Honourable Joshua Sacco the Member of Parliament of Chimanimani West. He has been visible, getting his hands dirty, appealing for aid and keeping communication lines open. Great example of how to deal with disasters. The situation could have been better if we had planned better for the response given the lead time the cyclone took from Malawi and Mozambique before hitting our eastern region.

Perhaps devolution needs to be taken seriously and empower provincial governments because they have first hand of local developments. They are better prepared to take pre-emptive action before Harare gives a go ahead.

For more help for cyclone victims get in touch with Econet and David Coltart. They are running Appeal funds-kindly donate and assist our brothers and sisters in need.

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Diaspora Matters

The Toughest Job For Zimbabweans Ever

talento

Our nation has some of the brightest minds on the continent. We hold top positions in many organisations across the region, the continent and the world. Zimbabweans skills are found at top institutions such as World Bank, IMF, UN, BBC, SABC and NASA. Our government has tried its best in promoting education and for this reason; we have one of the highest literacy rates on the continent.

Hardworking and honest citizens, whenever a Zimbabwean is given a job, be assured they will do their level best. From Accounting, Agriculture, Robotics, Medicine, Marketing….we are extremely rich on human capital. So given the background of these skills, what do Zimbabweans struggle with?

The area that gives Zimbabweans the toughest challenge is partnership especially partnership in business! All the education, all the skills come to naught when you ask Zimbabweans to come together and form a business partnership.

Getting them together is extremely difficult and assuming they manage to do so, the partnership will not last! The country promotes individualism and perhaps this can be traced to the education system where team work is not actively encouraged. One must succeed alone and should get the glory alone!

How many presidential election candidates did we have last July? How many political parties are we going to end up with at the end of the year? Even at church level, how many churches do we have? What is happening with AFM church?

How many blue chip companies did we form outside the borders? Why do we have only Strive Masiyiwa as the only official billionaire? Why did we lose the Barclays Bank stake to Malawians?

When it comes to unity in business, Houston we have got a problem!

If we openly talk about this area, hold discussions and acknowledge our weaknesses and correct them, then the country is going to reclaim its rightful place on the continent. If we however continue with individualism then we will continue lagging behind.

Other nationalities such as Somalis in South Africa are doing well collectively, Nigerians across the continent are doing well on the auto-parts business. Burundians in Malawi are doing extremely well with commodity broking. Congolese nationals in Mbare enjoy the lion’s share of food imports.

One of our forum objectives is the promotion of business partnerships in Zimbabwe and below we cover a hot topic on our forum.

Question

Hello ladies and gentleman. Please help me I’m into cake business and have a friend who is also into cakes but her hands are tied sometimes. So she gives me orders when she can’t do such as wedding cakes. She is not well versed with some of the baking processes.

Whenever we receive an order for a birthday cake, I do the buying of ingredients, baking and delivery of the cakes. Iye anobatsirawo twaanogona.What percentage of the profit should I give her? The 50/50 is not working for me.Please help.

Responses

Luwy Kay Kusemwa Zvine mutauro.

Firstly any cake that you bake iye akaita kunge assistant baker do a 80:20 ratio (introduction plus assistant fee)

Secondly any cakes that you do all the work from buying ingredients, baking and delivery 90:10 ratio (introduction fee)

Thirdly if you are in Zim things are hard for everyone but munhu wese ane tools to make it work. Social media should be one of your best advertising tools. The other being word of mouth from your existing networks. You could try branch away from this friend of yours arikukushandisa and making a name for herself whilst you are the one doing the work.

Sit down naye and you tell her you are not her employee and she is not your employer. If i were you I would work hard to source my own clients. She should just refer those to you without expecting payment for work that you are doing. Right now she is learning from you and once she is able to do those wedding cakes on her own she will drop you.

It’s not that hard to get clients if you have a smart phone and internet.

Feel free to inbox me I can try help you to create your own advert and show you how to advertise on Fb, IG, WhatsApp etc.

Runyararo Primrose Chandiwana-Munjoma I also bake kkk 50/50 sei iwe watenga ingredients kkk they are 2 ways to do it fairly;

1. If she gives you her a referral l token you would have given to anyone else akuita refer a customer at most 15per of the profit kwete of the sale coz ukati of the sale wanyura kumaingredients
2. She can just be a broker akawana customer okubvunza uda marii apa iwe ukati $10 iye oti kune customer yake $20 otora yake yemusana $10.
Wedding cakes same same better atorege kubatsira or she helps and  observe you do the other stuff and learn.
Kana zvanetsa leave her orders nekudhura kwakuita ingredients bodo

Eng Brian Mukoyi I understood this to mean the friend is bringing business though she is not well versed with cakes

There are two things
1. Either you genuinely want business advise to cover your costs and make your profit or
2. You are selfish. You want to sideline the source of your business.

More often than we struggle because we don’t know how to deal with partnerships and synergies.

Genuinely look at your costs incl your own labour (priced fairly) then advise your partner of those costs and proposed split. 

If you break this partnership, she will look for another partner who can give her a better deal. 

Consider her business as addition to your own capacity . Do your own cakes as an individual and in your ‘spare time’ take her business. Every cent counts!

Rejoice N Zvobgo I think it depends with how much you both invested into the business ma shares enyu ndoanotaura how it’s supposed to be.

Tech Hub Harare Partnerships can be good or bad for business. They can make or break you. In general partner with someone who can do what you can’t do. Evidently you need your partner coz she gets the orders and that is why we go into business to generate profitable sales. Her customers I have no doubt are often repeat customers. Make it work. It’s ok to discuss new terms but bear in mind the value she is bringing in the relationship, which can be easy to overlook.

Frank Mzondiwa The writer is about to become greedy. Partnerships work and as you alluded to she is giving you a steady supply of clients.

Now you want more as you feel you are doing the bigger work but without those clients your partner is supplying you wouldn’t begetting anything right.

You may break off from her but you don’t have the marketing acumen that she has.

Imagine a football player or musician dumping her manager and going it alone. Read Strive Masiyiwa’s latest post, he said most investors Do not fund single person run businesses.

He said most people have money but are failing to make it in business because they do not have a partner. 

As an individual the going will get tough you don’t know the type of work your partner is doing to get clients.

Leave greed aside and go 50/50

50% of an elephant is better than 100% of a rabbit..after breaking off you may get 1 client per year.

P Phiri : Devise an agreed share scheme right from the start….ipapo pahumbimbindoga – going solo- ndoopatiri kufira isu vatema- tichikundwa nevarungu!

Most of these billionaires of today had just original ideas but financing came in the form of selling shares – thus the concept of *venture capitalists*

You seem greedy @50/50 bcoz you making profit… forgetting kuti at 50/50 its also a shared risk in the event of business failing! Without her giving your orders – then your business drops!

Forum Member : Exactly securing orders (Marketing ) is tricky business and you get your fingers burnt in the event that the order flops, when everything is smooth running zvoita kunge ari ku benefiter, however I would be comfortable with situation yekuti she buys ingredients, and you charge her labour and your overheads like any other client auya ne order asi ane ma ingredients, that way you dont feel like you are doing her a favour, its just business!!
Tricky part is if you have had this arrangement for long and she has enjoyed the profits, kana ari well connected she might take her business elsewhere! Think it through, explain nyaya yekutenga ma ingredients and stuff and put your proposal on the table.

P Phiri  I think as Zimbabweans we should honestly start looking at ourselves and put ourselves in the other person’ s shoes, partnerships work for people from other nationalities asi isu we are quick to think of how we should profiteer individually, guys let us mature to that stage yekuti zvirinani ndiwane 10% of 1000 ,instead of 100% of nothing.Kuti basa rinzi basa ma orders without orders hapana basa. Goodwill yemunhu ane ma clients counts in a very big way.

Pervia Ngwenya Its a Agreement or arrangement which involves 2 or more different pple coming together and setting out shares and terms. So we suggest tauriranai.

MissLolo Chor Vanhu varikuti 50/50 are you serious though! What about ingredients and electricity bill, utensils? Ahhhh guys! It can’t be 50/50!

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Diaspora Matters

Diploma in Kombi Management

kombi

Isn’t it a wonder that our local universities do not have any formal courses on Kombi businesses? Absolutely no course on running kombis or mshikashikas and yet this is one of the biggest sectors in the economy? Harare alone is estimated to have more than 10.000 kombis and an unknown huge number of mshikashikas(small unregistered taxis).

This is a sector that employs thousands of people and also helps to empower plenty. A diploma in running kombis would be a relevant qualification that ensures one gets employment or start own transport business.

Local colleges…wakey wakey or soon ZBIN will register as a college offering streetwise degrees and diplomas lol On a serious tip, we will grab half of the market share currently enjoyed by leading universities. Most of the local degree programs produce unemployed graduates and yet we have expanding business sectors such as kombis, mshikashikas,malayitsha where no formal education exist.

Will a Kombi Management Graduate(KMG) find no employment? Will a KMG fail to raise own funds to start a business? How many kombi owners are employing unqualified people? Will a KMG not find employment as a driver? Yes drivers are earning more than most formally employed people. Our college professors should think in other terms or they will lose out to street colleges which produce empowered graduates with skills to start own businesses or be employed in a fast expanding sector but lacking in terms professional skills.

Below we cover what universities should be covering.

What sort of advice would you give to a first timer Kombi owner?

Brain Dumira Please be the hwindi!

Simba Mutandwa Bad investment, prepare to suffer from hypertension.

Darlington Makaya When you see a missed call from the driver then know kuti ma 1 atanga. Lol

Frank Kalonde Buy Toyota Hiace Super 16s, ignore Quantums!

Chenjerai J Chikwangwani Takawira I have been in the business for 3 years now lessons acquired so far : 1. Put your drivers and conductors on funeral covers 2.always buy a new Kombi 
3.enjoy 20% and reinvest the rest
4.have an asset replacement reserve
5.Get all the papers
6.never be afraid to say you are fired

Simbarashe Tafirenyika Also got a qtn on kombi business,zvikubhadhara here these days?

Tnashe Aaron Basira Noone in our country offers a systematic mode of transport, why cant 1 stary a system whereby people can buy monthly tickets then the the transport provider just goes around set routes with set times picking up people. That way we will help employees save money, whilst making money as the transport provider

Rosemary Chiganze You will count cash everyday .invest the profits. know when to “harvest ” the business.inogona kuzodya mari yese yayakashanda.

Charlemaigne Alexander chakatanga ndochakachenjedza🙂.

Wellahz McWellennium My advice is: Be the mechanic, Traffic police, driver and hwindi at the same time, otherwise hapana zvawaita.

Tristan Knill Driver must obey all traffic rules

Ronald Mutumbi Mahwani ako atangidza.

Chenjerai J Chikwangwani Takawira Get all the papers 1) m.v insurance $86(2) m.v license 3) rank disc $75 (4) operators license 5) passenger insurance $204 6)route permit $75

Vickvock Samu make sure you service your vehicle timely, have correct papers (usaite hukopokopo), don’t put high targets or expectations (vakomana vanouraya vachida kubata target), be clear & specific to your employees or collegues, save something on daily basis.

Michael Zemura 1. Just know no matter how strict u a, they will still yawo yemusana. 2. Save save for the big repairs

Matthew Tinashe Nyaguze Don’t expect much, know when to change employees and know when to park the vehicle when it’s not working. Rather, do your accounts well and they will tell you whether to continue or move out of business while your vehicle has a good value. The biggest challenge is HR Relations.

MrWillies Chimuti u need to save a lot so that the kombis multiply cox kuti usagare pasi ivawo neakati wandei and also kana achiri mashoma the bad days anorwadza kupfura kunakidza kunoita the good ones so plix bro or sis save and save and save kusvika wane 10 or more then you can relax cox that business is stressing kana uine mashoma

Nyasha Sundai Dnt give your drivers a big target and always service yo kombi every 5000km and usangochinje chinje ma driver

Mupfumi FX Track your driver&conductor.. Usaite business iri nekuripira gotsi hoping kuti cash will just trickle in easily…

Have a fund for regular servicing.

Have an accumulating fund to buy another!

Trish Bruins Teach them manners.!!

Elvis Mazumba Service and makesure employ driver ari mature enough

Richard Vari first pinda wega pa road unyatsodoona kuti pakamira sei so that mangeana what ever your drivers bring home u dont think wabirwa. also your staff should be well behaved and should respect ma pasengers ndivo varungu vako..

Ashley Ndlovu tsvaga manager kana makombi ako ava 4 or more

Royel Damson You need to consider the route you want to service how good are the roads vs the money you will be getting… You don’t have to listen to your employees (driver and door men) unless what they are saying is making sense and its a fact. Personally u need to understand the whole transport system, remember that kombi business in Zim it’s not a formal job no matter mota yako ine maPaper ese be in a position to be a street player and deal with different situations accordingly. Have time to talk with other operators to know how they are doing it… Be simple, easy but strict.

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