French yeast giant, Lesaffre Group has injected in excess of $3 million in working capital since acquiring the majority stake in local manufacturer, Anchor Yeast Private Limited. Lesaffre Group last year concluded the 60 percent acquisition of Anchor Yeast to form Lesaffre Zimbabwe in a deal expected to inject $17,5 million over time to boost productivity.
Speaking at the official opening of the first state of the art Lesaffre Baking Centre yesterday Vice President Emmerson Mnangagwa said captains of industry must venture into the world and establish strategic partnerships that can address Zimbabwe’s economic woes.
“I wish to applaud Lesaffre Zimbabwe for the milestone it has achieved. The company has injected in excess of $3 million in working capital. “I am also informed that the Gweru Yeast production factory is being transformed into a state of the art facility and that plans are underway to double its capacity,” said VP Mnangagwa.
He said the commissioned Baking Centre will play a pivotal role in the development of the baking industry in Zimbabwe. VP Mnangagwa said Lesaffre Zimbabwe’s project is in line with the African Union’s Agenda 2016.
The Baking Centre situated in Workington Harare, is a centre of expertise in bread making. It will be dedicated to training, technical support, product and process development and commercial presentation of the products.
Lesaffre Group is a multi-national and multi-cultural company which has more than 75 subsidiaries based in about 45 countries globally. Minister of Finance Patrick Chinamasa speaking on the sidelines of the launch said the country needs more equity investment rather than loan financing.
“We need a situation where the investor is coming with money and is willing to take a risk with respect to that investment. “That is what we should encourage, equity investments not loan financing like what we are witnessing today because loan financing means we are going to have to pay either as a country, as a Government or even individual players and it still adds on to the country’s debt,” said Minister Chinamasa.
Speaking at the same occasion Industry and Commerce Minister Dr Mike Bimha said while Government has done its best to come up with policies to protect and support businesses like the statutory instrument 64 of 2016 they cannot continue protecting companies.