Tech start-up Avantis eyes VFEX

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Victoria Falls Stock Exchange

BY MTHANDAZO NYONI
AN ambitious technology outfit says it will list on the forex-indexed Victoria Falls Stock Exchange (VFEX), possibly becoming the first youth-led operation to trade its stock at the
waterfall.

Avantis Technology spokesperson Ronald Jack told NewsDay Business that by listing on the VFEX, the firm expects to encourage other youth-led businesses to go the extra mile.

“Our eyes are set on getting listed on VFEX because it will give confidence to our company which is run by young people,” Jack told NewsDay Business, noting that Avantis kicked off operations in 2016,  assembling computers and exporting them to countries like Uganda and Kenya.

“We are looking forward to raising more finances and capital from the VFEX to fund our operations and expansion drive. We are assembling 200 laptops per month but this is a figure we would like to surpass this year. Getting listed will bring credibility to our company and unlock capital. I encourage all young people with start-ups and small businesses to be listed on the stock exchange for them to grow,” Jack added.

The VFEX was established in 2020 to help firms raise US dollars and skirt exchange control risks.

Currently, there are four counters listed on VFEX and these are Seed Co International, Padenga Holdings, Caledonia Mining Corporation and Bindura Nickel Corporation.

Listings have largely been elusive since VFEX came on the scene, but it recently received positive reviews by experts, who see recent global dynamics boosting opportunities for investors.

Last month, experts at a Harare-based advisory said bulls would camp on the VFEX’s mining counters this year, as markets respond to robust demand in electric vehicles (EVs) and output from global automobile makers.

It had generally been said lithium mines would clinch bigger deals out of the EVs revolution.

But researchers at Wealth Access Securities firmed up the positive sentiment by adding a few more Zimbabwean endowments whose values would buck the global trend as economies swing towards clean energy.

It tipped VFEX-listed Bindura Nickel Corporation (BNC) to rebound as appetite rises on the back of higher demand for minerals required for manufacturing EV batteries, including nickel and graphite.

The report projected global demand for lithium to rise 36-fold in the coming decade, with Zimbabwe among the heartthrobs of the push whose framework is being shaped now.

“Gold prices have been on the rise given its safe haven status,” said Wealth Access.

“Global risks and geopolitical uncertainties should help in maintaining this bullish trend. There has been a trend recently by governments to push for clean energy and a push towards clean energy vehicles so as to achieve low carbon societies. It is estimated that the proportion of EVs and hybrids in global auto sales might be over 50% by 2030. We expect a drastic change in the automobile industry and materials sector. The place of internal combustion engines will be taken by the batteries and new-vehicle-motors. As such, certain mineral resources are going to be in high demand. A lithium-ion battery requires lithium, cobalt, nickel and graphite as significant materials,” the report said.

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