GreyMarge Investments – A growing conglomerate addressing Africa’s most pressing issues
GreyMarge Investments is a conglomerate that has for objective to solve some of Africa’s most pressing problems using cutting edge and innovative methods. It is a very diversified company with subsidiaries operating in the Technology, energy, finance, education, health, and agriculture sectors.
GreyMarge Investments is the brainchild of Victor Mapunga a young and innovative serial entrepreneur from Zimbabwe who started his entrepreneurial journey at the tender age of 13.
In today’s story, Victor Mapunga who is now only 18 shares with Africans Building Africa how his passion for problem solving has allowed him to achieve at his very young age things that most people can only dream of.
- Tell us about yourself and your business
My name is Victor Mapunga; I am an 18-year-old Pan African serial entrepreneur, currently Founder & CEO of GreyMarge Investments: a growing diversified company with interests in telecommunications, agriculture, energy, finance, consulting and technology. We form strategic partnerships with firms from across the globe, from the US to India to undertake in numerous ventures across the continent. I am also the Co-Founder & President of SecondGen Africa.
- How much did you need to start your business and how were you able to raise that capital?
I registered the company in 2015 under a loan I got from my late father to a tune of $2000. Initially the incorporation of $800 was to help me undertake my numerous business activities under an official umbrella, I then used the remainder of the funds to loan to SME’s that would return the facilities with a little bit of interest after every month. As my network grew, I ran into numerous individuals who’ve since acted an mentors and angel investors in many of my projects.
- What are some of the challenges you face in your business and how do you overcome those challenges?
I have had to overcome to age barrier. It was very difficult (and sometimes still is) to be taken seriously by numerous corporate execs, distributors, manufacturers and even regulators as a teenager. I’ve had to avoid revealing my age in most cases and qualify as a twenty something year old when in fact I’m just 18; however, after proving my abilities and capabilities this ceases to be an issue, rather, it becomes more of a fascination and an ‘inspiration’ according to some individuals.
Getting reliable & updated statistical data in Africa for concrete research is always a pain; however, I have managed to constantly procure the necessary information I require from various governmental departments, even cold mailing if need be, as I like going into business with some evidence to back up my assumptions.
- Where do you see your business in 5 year from now and what steps are you taking today to reach that objective?
In 5 years: GreyMarge Investments would have successfully launched and grew its current projects in developments such as the proposed mobile money and phone business alongside numerous others in media, agriculture and e-commerce. I have already established partnerships with numerous firms in the USA, India and China with an interest in these projects.
- What advice would you give to other entrepreneurs looking to start a business or invest in Africa?
Execution is everything! The advantage of doing business in Africa is that there are always numerous niches to exploit; hence, it must be done in a timely manner. Africa is currently the breeding ground for the next generation of disruptive innovators, so it pays to get started quickly because someone will rise to take your place if you do not.
Africa’s youth are the key! It’s worth to note more than 40% if Africa’s population is below the age of 25, meaning this generation of upcoming entrepreneurs, consumers & huge labor force will decide the course of history that Africa will take. These young ones need constant access to the basic amenities they need to thrive such as internet access, electricity, startup accelerators, access to capital and small loans, greater financial inclusion etc.
We can leapfrog! Africa is at a unique advantage because we have less legacy infrastructure to deal with. As the 4th Industrial Revolution is taking pace African nations and industries are able to jump on this band wagon with minimal costs incurred & actually implement faster as adoption is bound to be quicker. Africa lead the way with mobile money & mobile banking solutions, today it’s a growing industry even in developing nations showing that we can be trendsetters.
- How is your business participating to the development of Africa?
We are constantly trying to align ourselves with the needs of the continent in order to facilitate an astronomical rate of industrialisation in Africa. We undertake only in projects that bring value to the people of Africa, create sustainable jobs and provide broader opportunities for all our customers, employees and various other stakeholders. Our financial; inclusion services will see many Zimbabweans and other Africans become more engaged in online transactions providing a breeding ground for e-commerce again which we plan disrupting. Our projects in agriculture will see farmers get better access to organic supplements to better increase the yields of their crops. Our energy and telecommunications undertakings aim to see Africans get more connected and participate in the new economy.