CAPS assets sold for a song: Mtanda

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CAPS Holdings majority shareholder and chairman Fred Mtanda says he will appeal against last week’s sale of the company’s factory in Southerton Industrial area in Harare.
The factory was auctioned for US$1,5 million to a mystery buyer after the Sheriff of the High Court ordered the sale of some of the pharmaceutical company’s assets to repay debts owed to CBZ Bank.
The sale, however, can be challenged within seven days from the date of auction.
“We are appealing because we had made arrangements to pay some of our debts,” Mtanda told reporters on Tuesday.
He said the company had paid US$750,000 to CBZ Bank and made an obligation to pay another US$750,000 by the end of July. The auctioned property could be worth US$6 million, he added.
“The bank should have reversed the sale of the property because within two weeks I would have paid that US$1,5 million. Is there a motive for selling a property worth US$6 million for US$1,5 million?”
The auctioned assets include a drug manufacturing plant, a three-storey administration block with 47 offices, a kitchen, bar with a dispensary section, packaging sections, cold- rooms, receiving bays, a clinic and a guardroom.
CAPS used to be the country’s largest drug manufacturing company before it plunged into a financial crisis. The company last traded on the Zimbabwe Stock Exchange on November 30, 2011, before delisting.
It said then the delisting would pave way for restructuring of the business which would see new investors coming in to inject fresh capital. The pharmaceutical concern ended a 42-year presence on the bourse, trading at US0,10c per share.
Cabinet had also recommended that the government, through the Industrial Development Corporation of Zimbabwe Limited, should save the pharmaceutical giant from collapse by taking over its debts.
Employees are in panic mode after the sale of the company’s factory. They have been largely apprehensive because most of them have gone for six months without receiving their salaries.Advertisement