HomeBusinessRubber firm back on line, resumes exports

Rubber firm back on line, resumes exports

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BULAWAYO-BASED manufacturing concern Rubber Products Manufacturers is back on line and has resumed exports after having shut down in 2013 due to a huge debt, shortage of working capital, among other challenges.

BY MTHANDAZO NYONI

The company’s provisional judicial manager, Nyasha Motsi, told NewsDay in an interview that it has resurrected from the woods and was now supplying the local and regional market.

“The company is actually recovering right now as we speak (and) we have big orders of over $40 000,” Motsi said.

“We have even bought some furniture for the offices, we have revived certain machines that were broken down, we have recovered the boilermaker from Arenel and we are even now doing export orders as we speak.”

The company had lost a boilermaker worth $12 650 to Arenel Company in Bulawayo following the attachment of the property by 15 workers over outstanding salaries.

However, Bulawayo High Court Judge Justice Martin Makonese last year blocked the sale of Rubber Products Manufacturers’ property and the boilermaker was recovered after its mother company, Parkham Enterprises, filed an urgent chamber application in Harare blocking the sale of the property.

“We are exporting to South Africa. Last week we got an order from Zambia (and) we are in negotiations with a Ugandan company and Mozambique,” Motsi said.

From South Africa, Motsi said they were getting orders worth $5 000 every two weeks.

“Most of the mines in the country are now supporting us. They have given us test orders to see whether we are able to supply and we have been managing to do that so far,” he said.

“Exports volumes per month currently we are doing about 10 000 (units). The reason being a lot of these guys are still testing us. We are slowly building our capacity now. We have communicated with most our creditors like NSSA (National Social Security Authority), Zimbabwe Revenue Authority and we have told them that we will start making payouts to them as of March next year and I think we will be able to do that.”

The company manufactures belts, hosepipes, vacuum breaker hoses (the breaking system of locomotives), among other products.
“We are able to meet what our customers’ currently demand. Of course, they have promised us that as our relationship improves with them, they are going to give us more orders,” Motsi said.

He said Statutory Instrument 64 worked in their favour.

Motsi, however, said he was failing to implement some of the things as the courts were yet to confirm his position as a judicial manager.

“I cannot implement certain things because people who want to put in money are saying no we need only you to be there. But as it stands right now, I am still provisional, so these guys have held back waiting what the courts are going to say,” he said.

Instead of them waiting for the courts to decide, Motsi said they have done organic growth within the company.

Currently, the company employs 60 workers, down from about 200 it used to have before its closure.

It is saddled with a debt of over $3,8 million and it will take about six years to have it cleared, Motsi said.

For the company to be brought back to life fully, it needs about $5 million.

“I am aiming to having a complete recovery within four years whereby we would have paid off everybody and have redone our factory,” he said.

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