WHEN Vetumbuavi Mungunda resigned as CEO of Standard Bank Namibia in March last year, many people wondered why he was leaving a job that many would love to have.
Mungunda, however, had a dream to set up an enterprise he hopes will “have a massive impact in the country” and so, established Ombu Capital.
“We are looking at investment in the rural areas because these areas have not had any meaningful business investment and are treated as basket cases, where town people go to retire,” he said.
Mungunda describes Ombu Capital as an investment company that is a hub for entrepreneurial innovation, focusing on the acquisition, development and growth of businesses in the technology, agri-business, tourism and manufacturing sectors.
“Ombu means ‘fountain’ in Otjiherero and like a fountain, Ombu Capital aspires to be the reservoir of hope, longevity and renewal,” he told The Namibian last Thursday.
“Our belief is that Namibia needs a stronger entrepreneurship and innovation culture, especially in these impactful sectors that drive growth.”
According to Mungunda, Ombu Capital, which is registered with the Namibia Financial Institutions Supervisory Authority, is a business services company with three pillars.
“We strategise and advise companies on how to reconnect and reimage their business models and also engage in macro-economic research.
“The second pillar is to raise capital for companies relating to debt restructuring and funding; and the third is investment management in other companies, working with investors to buy into these companies and managing the businesses.”
Mungunda said Ombu Capital is led by a team capable of making the best investments in start-ups and scalable small and medium enterprises with the best technology and innovative business concepts.
“It is imperative that we foster a culture of entrepreneurship and innovation in the economy and create jobs and vibrancy in the country,” he said.
Ombu Capital is transforming into a giant, said Mungunda, and leaving Standard Bank, an institution he led for seven years, was necessary as it took him from his comfort zone to create a company he hopes will have a great impact on the lives of Namibians.
Mungunda makes use of his extensive network in the financial sector to leverage investment and funding and he advises Namibians to plan well for retirement so that they can continue having an impact on society.
Mungunda said ordinary Namibians stand to benefit from working with Ombu Capital, as the company will grow small enterprises to challenge the status quo.
“We want to work with businesses that have a high growth potential, with the aim of long-term capital appreciation, and supporting them to grow with disciplined management.
“In layman’s terms, say a farmer can only afford to grow maize on two hectares, Ombu Capital may come and say ‘let’s work together and grow maize on 1 000 hectares’ to ensure food security in the country,” said Mungunda, adding that where necessary there will be an exchange of funds for equity.
“We invest in companies where Ombu Capital can add value through involvement in strategic direction and the provision of technical support.
“Our key investment products are offered through two investment schemes, the technology and emerging agri and tourism incubation fund, and the business renaissance fund,” said the Harvard University-trained entrepreneur and business executive.
“We have the necessary knowledge and know-how to identify and enhance business opportunities, consistently adding value while mitigating risks.
“We want to invest in businesses that are sustainable and also have an impact to unlock new opportunities. This is an opportunity for our country to reimage our rural economic sector and to promote inclusiveness by bringing in smallholder farmers and smallholder tour operators to contribute to the country’s economic trajectory.”
Mungunda said Ombu Capital is also committed to skills development and has a strong network of specialist teams with a reputation for delivering to the expectations of key stakeholders.
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