SOUTH Africa headquartered engineering and steel firm, Tamuda Investment Group (TIG), has opened a steel and pipe business in Bulawayo with plans to establish a manufacturing plant that will provide one-stop-shop engineering services to a diversity of clients.
TIG is wholly owned by Zimbabweans based in the diaspora who have made a decision to look at the country with keen interest and intend to make a positive impact on efforts to rebuild the economy.
The group is already engaged in steel and pipe merchanting at Belmont industrial area where it has been operating for the past two months. Business Chronicle met group chief executive officer, Mr Terry Kumira, who was in Bulawayo this week to assess progress in the new business and seek deeper engagement for further investments.
He said their investment drive was a response to reforms under President Mnangagwa’s administration, which has opened the country for business.
“President Emmerson Mnangagwa, at the Zimbabwe Embassy in Pretoria on the 22nd of December 2017, emphasised the fact that we as the diaspora had to lead the drive for investment in Zimbabwe as we had acquired the expertise and relationships that could help the country move forward,” said Mr Kumira.
“Indeed, his clarion call that ‘Zimbabwe is open for business’ has resonated well with our business strategy of establishing a foothold in the motherland and as such we are looking at being part of the solution and put key resources in place for future investment to flow into the country.”
He said TIG was in the process of developing and finalising several investment projects in the country some of which are at a very advanced stage. The Bulawayo project is one of the champion initiatives under the company’s steel merchanting and engineering value addition thrust.
“We have set up a steel merchanting shop as well as a precision engineering shop in Bulawayo. Doors have been open to the public since the 1st of June 2018,” said Mr Kumira. He said his company believes Bulawayo was ripe for investment and, as such, they were keen to assist in restoration of the city’s status as the manufacturing hub of the country.
Mr Kumira said investing in Bulawayo was also strategic for exports into regional markets given the city’s efficient network with Botswana, South Africa and Zambia, for instance. He said they were now working on developing a lubricants blending facility and were looking for appropriate premises for the new venture.
“This will allow us to limit the amount of imported products coming into the country as well as improving the export potential of the country,” said the TIG CEO. He said the company was also keen to venture into water and sanitation projects in partnership with the Bulawayo City Council and was already working on the technical gape identification phase.
Mr Kumira has a rich background in the engineering sector having started his career in the construction and civil engineering space. He has also had a stint in the fuel and lubricants sector as well as steel and fabrication.
Yesterday, Business Chronicle visited the firm’s premises where workers could be seen busy at work. Sales manager, Mr Dalubuhle Siziba, said they were grateful for the warm welcome by the Bulawayo market.
Market response has been very good so far. We didn’t anticipate this when we came given the economic challenges facing the country. We are actually overwhelmed and we thank the Bulawayo market for the support,” he said. The company supplies a variety of steel and pipe products such as angle irons, deformed bars, iron sheets and plates and a variety of tubes to the engineering sector, indigenous small scale operators and the construction sector.