BY FIDELITY MHLANGA
SEVERAL executives have left the Zimbabwe Stock Exchange (ZSE)-listed roofing products and pipes maker Turnall Holdings in the past few months, as new managing director Zvidzayi Bikwa battles to keep the business afloat in a volatile climate, Standardbusiness has learnt.
Turnall Holdings announced Bikwa as its new MD in December last year, taking over from Rose Chisveto, who left in August after holding fort from 2018 to 2020.
Last Thursday, Turnall board chairman Bothwell Nyajeka announced the departure at the end of this month of financial director and company secretary Samson Mavende, who acted as MD from September to November 2020.
“The board hereby announces that the finance director Mr Samson Mavende has decided to leave the company on the 30th April 2021 to pursue other interests,” Nyajeka said.
“He was also the company secretary and has been with the company for four years.”
His departure comes after three senior executives left between last year and February 2021.
Contacted for comment, Bikwa said the business was taking steps to cut costs and sustain operations after the Covid-19 pandemic affected operations.
“Prevailing macroeconomic as well as Covid-19-induced challenges have had a knock-on effect on the performance of Turnall’s operations,” he said.
“To mitigate these challenges, we are taking several measures to ensure the continued viability of our business.
“While all efforts are being made to ensure job losses are minimised, it is, however, unavoidable that some of our measures are affecting employment levels across the entire business.”
Bikwa has 22 years’ experience gained across African markets, predominantly in the fast-moving consumer goods manufacturing industry in various capacities from general manager to chief executive officer.
He was previously CEO at Pioneer Foods SA in Nigeria, managing director of Catercraft P/L, and spent 12 years at the ZSE-listed Innscor Africa as general manager.
He holds a BCom degree in Economics, MSc Tourism from the University of Zimbabwe and MBL from the University of South Africa.
Turnall Holdings’ profit after tax dropped by 82% to $28,16 million during the half-year ended June 30, 2020 owing to Covid-19- induced measures, which were in force last year.
In the comparative 2019 period, the company posted a profit-after-tax of $153,06 million.
Turnall is a key player in Zimbabwe’s piping and roofing products sector.
It recently introduced new products in line with the growing demand for corporations to protect the environment.