FCZ Timbers Botswana re-brands

HARARE: The Zimbabwean-based holding company of FCZ Timbers Botswana, the Forestry Company of Zimbabwe (FCZ), has re-branded in a development that saw the timber giant relocate its headquarters from the eastern border town of Mutare to Harare.

The move also saw FCZ and its subsidiaries assume a new logo and change names. The parent company has become Allied Timber Holdings of Zimbabwe while FCZ Timbers Botswana is now called Altim City Botswana.

FCZ Timbers Botswana opened in Gaborone in September last year as the first step of the Zimbabwean company's thrust into the rest of southern Africa.

It parent company, FCZ, was established in 2001 as a commercial wing of the government's Forestry Commission.

Allied Timber Holdings of Zimbabwe is Zimbabwe's largest grower, sawmiller, manufacturer, supplier and retailer of timber and timber products.

Speaking during the re-branding ceremony at which the Minister of the Environment and Tourism was the guest of honour, Allied Timber Holdings of Zimbabwe chief executive Joseph Kanyekanye said the company was settling well in Botswana because of a big appetite for timber in that country.

Kanyekanye said re-branding would provide a clear distinction between Allied Timber Holdings of Zimbabwe and the Forestry Commission.

"We seek to create a recognisable name that reflects our strength and integrated activities," he said. "We wish to stand for a distinct, consistent and first-rate approach to products and service delivery in Zimbabwe and beyond."

Speaking at the same event, Zimbabwe's Minister of the Environment and Tourism Francis Nhema said re-branding would allow Allied Timber Holdings of Zimbabwe to approach the market as a broad-based business.

Nhema encouraged the company to strengthen its presence in Botswana as well to expand to the rest of SADC. The Common Market for Eastern and Southern Africa (COMESA), which will soon become a free trade area, was another attractive market.

Hhema said with the coming of the FIFA Soccer World Cup in 2010, South Africa also presented an immense market.

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