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Local clubs need to professionalise their operations


FC PLATINUM have been in the Premier Soccer League (PSL) since 2011 and have already played in the Caf Champions League and the Confederation Cup twice, something which has been a preserve of traditional football giants.

NewsDy Editorial

Save for Hwange, Gunners, Monomotapa and Motor Action, these tournaments have been largely dominated by Dynamos, Highlanders and Caps United.

But for FC Platinum, they have set their goals higher and last Friday announced their intention, through their new holding company FC Platinum Holdings, to eventually list on the Zimbabwe Stock Exchange (ZSE).

Although these are still dreams, the way they are doing business, it can be argued, that can be realised especially as they have totally embraced the Club Licensing Regulations that clubs must be run like companies that have a professional set-up.

There is How Mine and Triangle — infant clubs in the PSL yet they have great potential to wean off from their sponsors to run as separate entities.

How Mine are owned by Metallon Gold Zimbabwe while Triangle are owned by Tongaat Hullet – huge firms that have financial capacity to enable their football clubs to turn into independent entities.

The decision by Mimosa Mining Company to wean FC Platinum and provide funding for them to set up as a separate company should be applauded by all progressive sports lovers in the country.

While Mimosa remains the principal sponsor of the club, there is no doubt that FC Platinum Holdings’ commercial arm is a new concept in Zimbabwean football.

It is a phenomenon that can be replicated by the rest of the top-flight teams, especially those that have the financial muscle.
Zimbabwean football cannot continue to lag behind other countries, especially when compared to Botswana.

Botswana is a small country but their flagship side and defending league champions Township Rollers are a cut above the rest in terms of administration.

The team is owned by Township Holdings, a company chaired by millionaire Jagdish Shah of top company CA Sales. The other shareholder is Somerset Gobuiwang while the fans also have a stake.
This is the route that FC Platinum Holdings, and their ambitious ZSE plans, are following.

There is no reason why the rest of the Zimbabwean clubs cannot do so.
Sadly, for all their success and big name brands, Dynamos and Highlanders have nothing to show for their four-year partnership with BancABC.

Highlanders though, on the flipside, had long invested in properties, but they should move ahead with the times, realign their old constitution with modern football trends and operate like a fully-fledged company.

In short, Highlanders must be owned by Highlanders Holdings – the flagship of this company being the football club and the commercial arm being their sports bars, camping house, sports club and city offices.

For Dynamos, they once had a stand in Waterfalls, but as its stands today they have nothing.

They actually rent an office at the National Sports Stadium. As the country’s most successful and most followed club, this is an embarrassment to the multitudes of their supporters.

It is time Dynamos led by establishing themselves as a company, but of course that has failed. In fact, one of their former leaders Farai Munetsi tried to re-do the way things are down at Dynamos, but was quickly shown the door.

We need to take Zimbabwean football a step further and the big clubs must lead the way, with FC Platinum setting the ball rolling.

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