ZIMBABWE – Innscor Africa Limited (Innscor) has appointed commercial lawyer Addington Chinake as its new chairman to replace David Morgan, Business Live can reveal.
While the Zimbabwe Stock Exchange-listed conglomerate was reportedly finishing up formalities for the announcement, market insiders said the 45 year-old was due to be unveiled soon as the processes were “virtually done”.
“After Morgan’s departure late last year, there was an interview process and in which Chinake came out tops. For a young man like him, it’s quite an achievement to not only replace another top lawyer and long-serving Innscor man like Morgan, but a major challenge to lead a $1 billion company,” they said.
“As you would know, the old man (Morgan) had done his best to drive this company to where it is today and my thinking is that they chose Chinake for his recognisable industrial experience and expansive network,” the source added on why Zed Koudonaris’ company might have settled for the Kantor & Immerman (KI) senior partner.
By being selected for the Innscor board, the serial deal-maker also joins group veterans such as Mike Fowler, Koudonaris, John Koumides and Julian Schonken.
Through this appointment, Chinake also joins a small band of commercial lawyers who lead various prestigious companies such as fellow-listed Delta Corporation’s Canaan Dube, Sternford Moyo of Stanbic Bank Zimbabwe Limited and the Zimbabwe Revenue Authority (Zimra). Also in this league is Hwange Colliery Company’s Farai Mtamangira.
With his arrival coinciding with the appointment of new Innscor chief executive Antonio Fourie, the two are expected to drive a restructuring exercise, which began late last year.
The company, which made history by recording $1 billion in revenue to June 2014, is in need of fresh ideas in the wake of a rapidly declining economic environment.
In recent times, Innscor has said group margins had been “compounded by inefficient management structures in a number of its core businesses with profits falling “against a backdrop of reduced disposable incomes”.
However, company shareholders are upbeat that Chinake and Fourie would be able to steer the $600 million-capitalised company to greater profitability.
Under the restructuring exercise – anchored in the volatility, uncertainty, complexity and ambiguity model – about six new clusters have been created as the group also focuses on the external market. These are commodity trading, logistics and distribution, light manufacturing, quick service retailing, retail and wholesale as well as legal services.
With this five-year strategy, Innscor is targeting a 30 percent return on equity, free cash of up to 60 percent and 50 percent revenue earnings of from abroad.
The company also hopes to achieve this through six ingredients namely: cost containment, diversification, organic growth through integration and acquisitions, operational excellence, vertical integration and unique ownership/partnership strategies such as franchising.
Under this plan, several divisional heads, including Dionisio, former chief executive Koumides and Schoken have been given new portfolios.
With 20 years’ experience in all aspects of business law, including acquisitions, finance, build own operate and transfer, mining mergers and private-public partnerships, Chinake has participated in some of Zimbabwe’s biggest transactions to date namely Atlas Mara-ABC Holdings Limited and Essar Africa Holdings-Zisco mergers – and which are collectively worth $1 billion.
A current member and chair of Kansai Plascon-owned Astra Industries, Chinake is also the former deputy chairman of Murray & Roberts – now Masimba Holdings.
He has also previously served on the boards of Art Holdings Limited, Phoenix Consolidated Industries Limited, an external counsel to the Judicial Services Commission and Zimra.