Two firms shortlisted to buy Deven

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The Industrial Development Corporation of Zimbabwe (IDCZ) has short-listed two local suitors interested in buying its shareholding in Deven Engineering, a local builder of trucks and buses.

Sources familiar with an evaluation of the bids told The Herald Finance & Business that Faramatsi, an investment vehicle linked to Doves Funeral Assurance and Glenwood Investments have been selected to acquire IDCZ’s 74 shareholding.

Deven’s core competence is trucks and bus body manufacturing done on rolling chassis or from knocked down kits. It can build trailers, tankers and specialised vehicle bodies such as compactors, dumpers, tippers, refuse trucks and repairs.

“Faramatsi and Glenwood are the potential buyers that have been selected for IDCZ’s 74 percent shareholding in Deven and an evaluation (of the bids) is in progress,” a source close to the deal said.

Faramatsi is also reported to be the investor, which acquired IDCZ’s 18 percent shareholding in Amtec Motors.  IDCZ general manager Ben Kumalo, recently said the evaluation and shortlisting of Deven Engineering bids were being finalised.

In 2018, Government approved restructuring strategies of IDCZ subsidiaries and associate companies through the State Enterprises and Parastatal Reform Framework. The restructuring is not only confined to total disposal of subsidiaries and associate companies, but also entails liquidation, privatisation and partial privatisation.

However, the privatisation process had been moving at snail’s pace as most offers are well below market value. In some instances, investors that would have been shortlisted are failing to provide the proof of funding.

So far, IDCZ has disposed of its 51 percent shareholding in Almin Metal Industries, 49 percent interest in Stone Holdings while Zimbabwe Copper Industries was liquidated.

Potential investors for Zimglass, — under liquidation, Irazim Textiles and Travan Blankets have been identified.  IDCZ also received bids for Chemplex Holdings, which required between US$70 and US$100 million for recapitalisation. IDCZ has also shortlisted potential buyers for car assembler, Willowvale Motor Industry (WMI).

Meanwhile, IDCZ is engaging several other Original Equipment Manufacturers for the local production of their brands at WMI, while pursuing disposal of its 74 percent stake. At its peak, WMI was producing 18 000 vehicles per year before production plunged.

Some of the brands which WMI assembled include Madza, Nissan Mitsubishi and Toyota.

In 2017, the company entered into a joint venture with Chinese firm to assemble cars from semi-knocked down kits. The partnership resulted in the formation of Baic Zimbabwe, a joint venture between Chinese fifth largest car maker, Beijing Automobile International Corporation and Willowvale Motor Industries. – Herald