New and Master Technologies (Pvt) Limited, a local company that manufactures water harvesting machines, is set to lease them out.
The company said that it had resorted to leasing after realising that their cash sales were being affected by liquidity challenges in the market.
The company is set to benefit from a R60 million facility sourced from partners by its parent company, N and M Technologies South Africa, to finance the rollout project within the region.
N and M Technologies Zimbabwe chief executive Mr Ellard Sauka said most corporates were eager to buy their water harvesters but on the basis of a payment plan since they had liquidity constraints.
“There is great enthusiasm for our product but the major hindrance cited by potential clients is the pricing and therefore we have decided to roll out a lease or hire plan whereby companies will simply have to pay a periodic fee for the water harvester.
“The rollout plan will include tapping into the R60 million availed to our parent company by donors for the alleviation of safe drinking water challenges,” he said.
The programme is set to begin at the end of this month and the targeted customers include hospitality industry players, medical institutions and municipal councils.
Mr Sauka was speaking in Harare soon after holding a closed door meeting with officials from N and M South Africa early this week.
“All those organisations that are interested in our product will be issued with letters acknowledging their interest. However, they will not have any obligation in terms of liability for the water harvesters and they are legally bound to use the product,” he added.
Mr Sauka added that the letters were simply an undertaking by the companies to express their desire to participate in this arrangement which is a pilot project and that N and M would then leverage on these letters of interest to mobilise more funding from financial institutions towards the leasing project.
The company is in the process of engaging the Zimbabwe Revenue Authority so that they can iron out issues related to duty fees before the water harvesters can be brought into the country from South Africa.
“We are engaging tax authorities to see how we can best deal with issues related to payment of duty as it has been the most deterrent factor that resulted in exorbitant pricing that was beyond the reach of many.
“As a result the harvester for home and office use was pegged at about US$8 000,” said Mr Sauka.
The water harvesters come in three sizes with the smallest unit suitable for indoor use in the home or office and can produce 38 litres of clean water every 24 hours, the middle one is a mobile unit that produces 1 300 litres every 24 hours.
The largest, which is an industrial unit, can produce up to 6 800 litres of water every 24 hours.
Technology of the water harvesters hinges on two processes that are advanced filtration and ozonation, the former ensures there are no inorganic minerals or foreign matter
while the latter kills all bacteria that might be present.
“There is no need for rain, surface water or even underground water but just the air around us (humidity) for safe water to be generated,” he said.