Matamba Anonaka, Zimbabwe’s tech focused venture capital firm

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We’ve been pointed to the existence of a tech focused venture capital firm in Zimbabwe called Matamba Anonaka Technology Holdings (MATHS). The VC is a joint venture between Rutland Consultants of Zimbabwe and Bridge‐Connect, a European based management and technology advisory services company. We were obviously quite pleased to know this, as this is the kind of development Zim’s tech startups need; the possibility of their ideas and skills getting some financial support.

Just how much influence or change MATHS will bring to the industry in terms of funding for telecoms startups and helping build a startup culture in Zimbabwe is of course not known yet. The fact however that business leaders notice there’s a huge gap and therefore huge opportunity for investment is, if nothing else, an indication that a worthwhile venture can get some attention and possibility some funding.

On its investment strategy, MATHS explains it i`s targeting five distinct areas in the Zimbabwe’s telecom sector namely, Mobile Voice and Data Services, Government Project Implementation, Location Based Technology Services, Investing in existing ICT Companies and Greenfield Projects and Telecommunications Infrastructure.

With mobile penetration now around 50% from as low as 9% in 2009, it’s no surprise this is an area of interest for investors. In Zimbabwe, just like it is in other Africa countries, mobile phones are our gateway to the many possibilities connectedness brings. And with low cost Asian mobile phones flooding the country, more low income Zimbabweans can afford to own one.

The MATHS investment portfolio already boasts long time telecoms company, like Celsys and has recently created Matamba Messaging Services, an online bulk massaging service. We’ll find out more about this and post in a future article. Matamba has also invested in a company called ComTainer-Labs, which uses refurbished containers to provide computing and internet services to schools and their communities. The concept is somewhat similar to Computer Aid’s solar powered cyber cafes

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The MATHS team spots business and telecoms notables like Patrick Chingoka, Geoffery Goss and Dieter Lange. We will reach out to Matamba Anonaka and hopefully get an interview to post here.

‘Matamba’, by the way is the Shona name of a sweet hard-shell orange-like fruit (here’s a picture) and ‘Anonaka’ loosely means ‘they are tasty/sweet’.

20 Comments

  1. SaFaith says:

    Just wondering…What’s in a name! Doesn’t sound money-sh enough.  What do they mean by having an Investment in Celsys…are they ordinary shareholders (becoz Celsys is a LonZim baby and its public knowledge). Being an ordinary shareholder and in the minority doesn’t seem to have anything with Venture Financing. Put across financially, venture funding is purely for start ups and Celsys is no start up.

    It also seems the rest of the Investments are wish lists- Tower company etc, which operator doesn’t have towers (steel superstructures) in every corner of Zim that they would want to rent some. Perhaps VAS companies of which they are better off renting from existing mobile operators’ infrastructure.

    I find it hard to believe these guys are in existence beyond this website of theirs. Even SA’s “youngest billionaire” who got arrested earlier this week also had 10 companies but only on websites.

    Sorry to be pessimistic but these guys don’t sound financial enough and the market is tired of phony deals.

    Let them talk of an actual trxn they have financed as a venture capital firm (or better change profile to private equity firm) then we can talk.

    For now they might as well… stop misleading people.

    Anyone in doubt can just go and check out Celsys’ share register at the Transfer Secretaries.

  2. Chisinam says:

     do they have a website? lets me about it. 

    1. Anonymous says:

      Sorry @Chisinam forgot to include link. Just updated. http://matambaanonaka.com/http://matambaanonaka.com/

  3. Joe says:

    That is some of the best news I’ve read here in a long time. We don’t lack initiative in Zimbabwe, what we lack is resources to bring those initiatives to fruition.

    Good stuff.

  4. Macd says:

    Mazhumwi anonaka kudarika matamba, but nevertheless  wish you the best guys

  5. Awsome development. Encouraging to those that have refined ideas. Obviously not for the Nhava like preneurs. Im very very please to hear of such an initiative.

  6. Gomoguru says:

    @90315263c133399a559a343a33adfa4e:disqus Zimbabwe has been through so much that such initiatives should be commended. l believe your intentions were to be a constructive critic but that is not reflected in your post as it is offensive. Spare us the cursing please and lets work together to make Zim tick.

    Geoff was the CEO of Celsys, Lead Exec at Lonzim and does have the clout to make this possible as he has over 20 years experience in tech. He recently presented at Africom in SA (Africa’s premier comms event). These are credible men who are starting up something fresh, better to support than assault…

  7. MukanayaWeMbiri says:

    matamaba anonoka…. sounds like a Porn site…. 🙂 

  8. Tafmak3000 says:

    Matamba Anonaka! Really? UGLY NAME UGLY NAME! I can’t help but suspect that this is an indigenous “front” for an EU multinational Conglomerate! I’m not saying that there is anything wrong with this but they could at least be straight forward about it. No point in forcing an inappropriate shona name on a Co. and try to make it sound indigenous!   

    This could easily be Lonrho (LONdon RHOdesia)  Once again UGLY name.  

  9. Sikefula says:

    just imagine how painful for the Receptionist @ matamba co…fone rings….heloo!….m-a-ta-m-b-a a-n-o-n-a-k-a,can i help yu…the other party (read murungu or no shona
    speaker) goes!…WHAT?….kikikiii!…..

    1. Tafmak3000 says:

       They can call it  Mathamba Sweetness at least that could explain the (MATH)amba (S)weetness = MATHS part of it. 

      companies with such weird names are usually hastly put together as fronts for real companies! 

      Ladies and Gentleman we want the real Mackoy!

  10. Tafmak3000 says:

    Welkom Yizani Investments a proudly African/indigenous Company right? Wrong! 

    http://www.welkomyizani.co.za/facts/index.html

  11. Obidzam says:

    WE do not need people who can only find faults in ideas mind you all the success you see today was achieved by people who were scorned for having crazy ideas. Just imagine if what people said when the Wright brothers said we are making a flying machine! backward thinking people like faith will start explaining why it’s not possible because they use only textbook knowledge, which of cause is limited!

    1. Tafmak3000 says:

      @4d17ab453a56db7a149de3b52337aa92:disqus Such reasoning stunts growth! Let critics criticize and experts prove them wrong! After all the only thing critics know how to do is criticize so let them do what they do best. That way Mathamba Sweetness here will have another reason to make sure they succeed!
      Please defend your opinion not plead with other people to withhold theirs. It is said what inspired the Wright Brothers the most was the UNJUSTIFIED criticism they got, not the people that pleaded the UNJUSTIFIED critics to shut up!   

  12. makumboenyoka says:

    The legs of a snake, there is nothing new here nor exciting 

  13. Iwirelesstechnologies says:

    vakomana nevasikana, Chachii ichifuti! Matambo Anonaka! wha the heck is tha? venture capital company yipi inonzi Matambo Anonaka! At the rate at which change is taking place in Zim in terms of ICT, these guyz should be talk all over, ther ar many green field projects in the this nation to be silent and play the background,  

  14. Anonymous says:

    I have had the opportunity and privilege of meeting Mr. Geoff Goss and I vouch for these guys, they are serious people and the are experts in what they do and they definitely have the financial muscle to fund well polished and sound businesses.

  15. Ifm499 says:

    Matamba appears to have been launched 8 months ago and do not appear to have ripened yet or have they gone bad? Can all those who want SAFaith and TafMak3000 to keep quite explain yourselves? Chikosi Tawanda, can you vouch for the venture capitalism aspects and not the individuals? I googled venture capital in Zimbabwe and this Matamba popped up and am surprised that 8 months down the road nothing is moving?? All you guys have heard of Masawara? Now they did not just come up with a name and ideas but actually raised cash in London at the most difficult time in Zimbabwe???

    Now those born and trained and have an inclination to criticise, please do not listen to Obidzam and Gomoguru and thier kind, criticise so as TafMak300 said, real people will stand up and prove the critics wrong. From the lack of progress or ripeness of Matamba 8 months after launch, I rest my case.

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