MIDLANDS province’s youngest entrepreneur and property developer, Tinashe Manzungu, has been crowned provincial Small-to-Medium Enterprises (SMEs) Businessperson of the Year.
by Stephen Chadenga
Manzungu was honoured during a ceremony held at a Gweru hotel last Friday.
This is Manzungu’s third recognition in less than two years, after he won two similar accolades last year. The young entrepreneur, who graduated with a Bachelor of Environmental Science degree at the Midlands State University, says he is driven by a vision to give a roof to the majority low-earning Zimbabweans.
Through his company, Tinshel Properties and Construction, Manzungu has, in the past few years, invested more than
$23 million for a housing project whose main beneficiaries are low- income earners.
The first phase of the project, Tinshel Heights — worth more than $1,8m — is at the completion stage. The project is spread over six phases.
Speaking on the sidelines of the Midlands SMEs awards, Manzungu said he recently established Zimbuild Property Investments (Pvt) Ltd to target civil servants and other corporates, with the residential stands purchased at zero deposit.
“Zimbuild is a subsidiary of Tinshel Properties and Construction and is an arm that seeks to afford civil servants and other corporates a chance to own homes or stands at zero deposit,” Manzungu said.
“People were failing to build houses because of the high and enormous deposits that were charged by land developers, some as high as a minimum deposit of $2 000.”
He said at Zimbuild, where he is chief executive officer, stands are given at zero deposit and then monthly deposits of $100 are paid.
Manzungu said the affordability of the housing scheme had attracted huge response from people and made his company the provincial leader in residential property development.
Under Zimbuild, more than 700 stands have been developed in Gweru, more than 150 low-density residential stands in Kwekwe and in Kadoma, more than 750 stands in a high-density suburb called Cherrybank.
Manzungu said he was driven by the government economic blueprint, ZimAsset, and is confident to make a huge difference in clearing the housing backlog at Gweru City Council, which currently stands at 17 000. He said his company had spread wings and was now developing stands in Kwekwe, Kadoma, Zvishavane and Norton.
“In the next six months, we should be spreading to seven towns and cities in the country,” he said.
Besides being Zimbuild chief executive, co-director at Tinshel Investments, Manzungu also owns Zimbabwe People’s Trust and is also into tourism and owns Pine Guest lodges. He is also in the agro-business. “We are taking ZimAsset to greater heights.”
Manzungu said he appreciated the business awards honoured to him, but was quick to point out that “he puts the awards into practise” for the benefit of fellow Zimbabweans.