The Zimbabwe in Diaspora Investment Group (ZiDIG), a private investment outfit is being launched in UK’s second city Birmingham this Saturday, 11 February, 2017. The organisation will be going to market 2017 to raise money for an investment fund from Zimbabweans based abroad and institutional investors.
ZiDIG, incorporated and headquartered in the United Kingdom, will go on the road in 2017 for promotional roadshows covering the UK, the USA, South Africa and Australia where members of the Zimbabwean Diaspora community will be given an opportunity to subscribe to the investment fund targeting a range of opportunities in Zimbabwe. Subscriptions to the fund will be matched by emerging market focused institutional investors and developmental agencies.
In coming up with the fund concept, ZiDIG founder and CEO Mr Taffi Nyawanza said Zimbabweans by and large had now settled in their new places of residence abroad some having long completed their studies and others now well established in their chosen professional careers. This scenario, meant the Diaspora population had potentially built up meaningful savings stock and equity on their homes.
“The diaspora is Zimbabwe’s greatest offshore asset. That we have so far failed to properly harness its potential is merely down to a collective lack of creativity”, said Mr Nyawanza.
“The main consideration is to balance the existing scepticism of investing in a country such as Zimbabwe with all its legacy issues versus the reality that the opportunity to be a real player is now”.
Nyawanza, who is the Managing Director of Genesis Law Associates Solicitors Ltd, a mid-sized solicitor’s practice in Birmingham, UK, said he believed the existence of large Zimbabwean communities particularly in OECD was too big an economic force to ignore.
A prospectus is currently being written by experts detailing all the terms of the fund and various partnering institutional investors, developmental agencies and Zimbabwean institutes.
The programme also covers topics affecting Zimbabweans operating companies in the UK such as tax planning and compliance, use of agency staff, securing sponsor licence to recruit from abroad, impact of Brexit on immigration among others.
Also present will be the African Foundation for Development (AFFORD) who will present a £600,000 grant to be distributed to 20 diaspora run enterprises operating in Africa via a business planning competition. The businesses to access the grant must be operating in at least one of the four countries selected for piloting the project namely Zimbabwe, Sierra Leonne, Rwanda and Nigeria.