DOVES Holdings plans to ride on its reputation as the country’s oldest funeral service provider to consolidate its growth trajectory and increase its market share.Apart from growing domestic sales, the company will also focus on the Diaspora market, with prime targets being the United States of America, United Kingdom and Australia, group chief executive Dr Talent Mazivisa said last week.
“In response to market needs, we have redirected our investment focus around the development of our physical infrastructure, service delivery equipment and most importantly, development of a satisfied clientele base,” said Dr Mazivisa.
“We enjoy around 36 percent of the local market share, a far cry from where we intend to be.
“As such, we are positioning ourselves for growth to acquire over 60 percent of the market over the next five years.
“While we have, indeed, witnessed exponential growth over the last two years owing to the market’s appreciation of our century-old brand, which is financially solid and resilient – we remain unsatisfied.
“We acknowledge our massive potential of growth and intend to exploit it without fail.”
Doves is among the most popular brands in Zimbabwe and mostly recognisable logos.
Doves Morgan Funeral Services was the first professional funeral services establishment in Zimbabwe, then Rhodesia.
In 2012, Doves Holdings was taken over by a consortium of businessmen led by Farai Matsika and Phibeon Busangabanye.
The company comprises four strategic business units specialising in the provision of funeral services and funeral assurance products nationwide and globally.
Doves Holdings also boast of the country’s two major giants in coffins and caskets manufacturing, in both solid wood and steel.
Apart from being the preferred funeral service provider for State funerals, Doves has risen to be the unparalleled leader in the funeral services industry in Zimbabwe and the sub-Saharan region.
Dr Mazivisa said Doves was looking at reclaiming it’s position as the principal funeral service provider by directing focus towards development of key pillars of business development.
“We have invested in new parlours, buses, new age Ford Transit 2016 model hearses, state of the art Hyundai removal ambulances and funeral services equipment including tents, chairs, mobile toilets and lowering devices,” said Dr Mazivisa.
This has improved efficiency and service delivery to meet clients’ needs.
Dr Mazivisa said a state-of-the-art parlour in Beitbridge was nearing completion.
While the parlour will principally service the local community, Doves envisages that it will also become a key conduit in tapping into the Zimbabwean Diaspora community through repatriations from South Africa. Already Doves has entered into a service delivery agreement with Doves South Africa which boasts of 161 branches.
“This development feeds into our strategic goal of growing our footprint beyond our borders into the SADC region and as far afield as the United States and the United Kingdom – where we have a healthy Diaspora community,” said Dr Mazivisa.
“Our intention is clear here – it is to cater for Zimbabweans working and living outside the country.