BY TATIRA ZWINOIRA
CBZ Holdings Limited group chief executive officer Blessing Mudavanhu says the company will strive to support enterprising youths as part of its objective of contributing to the country’s economic development.
This comes as CBZ Holdings last Thursday completed the Youth Entrepreneurs Programme (YEP) 2018 edition. Ten youth entrepreneurs across the provinces were chosen and awarded cash prizes for being the best entrepreneurs.
CBZ Holdings partnered Star FM and Empowered Life Trust to host the yearly YEP providing financial support in a corporate social investment (CSI) worth US$350 000, while the latter two provided more technical support in the third edition of YEP.
“All of our CSI or CSR (corporate social responsibility) type initiative, if you like to call them, is based off a percentage of the profit that we make so the better we do the more that is allocated to these initiatives,” Mudavanhu told NewsDay on the awards night.
“Youth is the future. How you energise the economy is really injecting new blood or young blood so we think the youth have the energy and this is where we think we are most likely going to find innovation.”
Empowered Life Trust director Jonah Mungoshi said universities were churning out graduates who were failing to secure employment and that youths needed to be more proactive.
The 2018 edition of the YEP was a countrywide programme that searches for the best entrepreneurship businesses and targets 150 to 200 youths per province aged between 18 and 35 years.
The two big winners of this year’s edition of YEP won RTGS$15 000 and RTGS$10 000, respectively. These were Sympathy Sibanda and Pardon Matavanda who both won under the business start-ups and established businesses categories.
Sibanda runs a business under a brand name Amandhla. She produces organic peanut butter, raisins, candied nuts, peanut chocolate bars and macadamia.
After receiving the seed capital she ventured into the production of baby food. Sibanda has now started exporting to Botswana.
Matavanda is the founder of BAKE IT, which specialises in the manufacture and supply of bakery requisites such as cake mix, fats and oils.
Other winners on the night included Tariro Tavonga Tinago, Ignatious Mateveke, Simbarashe Nyagumbo, Geraldine Eve Kasambara, Marvelous Anesu Nyongoro, Farai Musendo, Faith Chimbiko and Tracy Mukasa.