Delta refutes operations capacity downsizing claims

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By Alois Vinga

BEVERAGE manufacturer, Delta Corporation has refuted claims that the entity intends to reduce operations in Zimbabwe as it plans to export its operations outside the country due to the unease in doing business.

Delta Corporation Corporate Affairs executive, Patricia Murambinda told Business that the entity had a long traceable tradition of serving the local market and described the claims as baseless.

“Please note that Delta is a Zimbabwean business having started its lager beer business in 1895, the Chibuku business dates back to 1966, whilst the soft drinks franchise under Coca Cola recently celebrated its 70th anniversary. The Company has no operations in South Africa. The social media rumours about downsizing or retrenchments are unfounded,” she said.

Despite the denial, a source within Zimbabwe’s Retrenchment Board confided in that Delta Corporation approached the authorities seeking permission to retrench.

“In our last meeting we were briefed that Delta intends to reduce its capacity utilisation owing to the liquidity crunch and critical foreign currency shortages. Information at hand indicates that they intend to export most of their operations to South Africa where conducting business is much easier,” said the source on condition of anonymity.

In May this year Delta announced that they were facing critical shortages of raw materials especially for Coca-Cola and Chibuku.

The entity cited that the raw materials were imported and the company had accrued debts with suppliers, with some having since stopped supplies to force payments.

Delta Corporation Limited is principally an integrated beverage company with a diverse portfolio of local and international brands in lager beer, traditional beer, Coca-Cola franchised sparkling and alternative non-alcoholic beverages.

It has investments in associate companies whose activities are in cordials and juice drinks, wines and spirits.