Zimbabwe: Opportunity & Risk in the Breadbasket of Africa

Published on
February 26th, 2018
25 minutes

Zimbabwe: Opportunity & Risk in the Breadbasket of Africa

Discoveries ·
Featuring John Legat

Published on: February 26th, 2018 • Duration: 25 minutes

Zimbabwe has just been shaken by the ouster of its longtime president, Robert Mugabe, who held power in the country for nearly forty years. Now, John Legat, CEO and Lead Fund Manager of Imara Asset Management, brings us the story of political unrest and economic opportunity from on the ground in its capital city, Harare.


  • JC
    John C.
    19 March 2018 @ 18:44
    Very interesting video - learned a lot. I think you need these sort of '10.000 foot' overviews with a lot of history thrown in to get a real sense of what is percolating in these types of frontier nations. I guess my main question is 'why would anyone want to go back' given what happened in the past and will these people ever be able to trust the government again? Maybe so, not sure how they would get the right sort of incentives but could see it happening. Also, what is the Chinese involvement at this point and will Zimbabwe see more investment from China going forward along with a rapprochment with the West, particularly the UK? Finally, does Mr. Legat have any thoughts about South Africa getting sanctions anytime soon (as did Zimbabwe back in the day when Mugabe made his nationalist moves and kicked out the white farmers) and if so wouldn't this benefit Zimbabwe in some ways i.e. direct FDI towards the country potentially? And what are his thoughts on the political parties there now and are they full of Marxist/Communists like in South Africa with the ANC etc. or are there new parties that toe more of a business/capitalist line? It appears that Zimbabwe is at or near 'rock bottom' so the only way to go is up! If you can take the risk seems like a very interesting place to look at in the coming years. Thanks RV.
  • AF
    Andrew F.
    27 February 2018 @ 13:48
    Zim is still risky. Politics is still an issue, just like South Africa. African politics is just risky period. Also doen't say anything about Chinese involvement in the country. Also mining rights by law 51% of any company has to be owned by a local. Has that changed? The Zim exchange: https://www.zse.co.zw/index.php/companies/listed-companies Yes if you believe in the long term trade idea.
    • JC
      John C.
      19 March 2018 @ 18:27
      Indeed. Seems that South Africa is trending towards a more Mugabe-like government with the recent elections and decision to strip farmers of their land and redistribute. Wondering how far the new Zimbabwean government / military coup has gone in terms of seeking to grow economically and not follow the redistributionist policies of the past.
  • CS
    C S.
    27 February 2018 @ 07:27
    Call me old fashioned, but regarding the intra-interview accompaniment, for music I go to iTunes, for financial discussions that aren't unnecessarily difficult to listen to, I go to RVTV. I hope Zimbabwe pulls things together. Africa needs more positive steps forward. More economic bulwarks against too frequent chaos. Stunning country by the way. I heard other African countries (besides South Africa, who looks about the repeat earlier Zimbabwean policies) were inviting white African farmers to come work in them. I wonder if Zimbabwe is one of them?
    • PW
      Paul W.
      3 March 2018 @ 16:58
      The initial attempts of the new administration seem to be to establish property rights for some of the white farmers who were displaced but I am hearing conflicting information and certainly nothing like an "invitation" for white farmers to come into the country at this point. Given that Zimbabwe has several million ex-pats in South Africa and overseas, I would imagine the government will incentivize them to return with their skills and capital as opposed to actively recruiting immigrants of whatever color. It is rather remarkable to me that South Africa is so oblivious to the Zimbabwe experience that they would repeat Mugabe's most destructive decisions but that does seem to be the case.
  • BD
    Bruce D.
    26 February 2018 @ 13:36
    Excellent discussion from boots on the ground, thank you! Please keep us abreast of the changes that are happening, as the next year will be important for the long term success. Are there any ways to invest through global public markets yet?
    • NS
      Nick S.
      27 February 2018 @ 04:27
      The insight into present day market conditions in Zimbabwe given in this video might have some value in marketing terms for Mr. Legat personally. However, his false perspective of the political situation and history of the region brings into question the validity of his argument given that he has lived there yet can not interpret the situation objectively. Also, this video appears to have been created before the death of Morgan Tsvangirai - otherwise Mr. Legat is completely clueless as he refers to Mr. Tsvangirai as still living.
    • RM
      Richard M.
      28 February 2018 @ 15:46
      *** RVTV *** - please note the last comment below from Nick. I know this has been brought up multiple times regarding posting the "recorded date" along with the publication date so people will know when the segment was filmed precisely so people could tell when a comment from the interviewee seems to be obviously wrong (as in the comment was referring to something that had already transpired. Most of the time you put the recording date in but sometimes you don't. Please be consistent and put the date of recording in all videos. Many thanks.
    • PW
      Paul W.
      3 March 2018 @ 16:52
      At this point, the Zimbabwe Stock Market is open to U.S. investors. It is not a trivial process to get an account opened - expect lots of phone calls, e-mails and repeated requests for the same documents but with persistence it can be done. As he mentioned, there was a big runup in 2017 and the P/E is now stretched but that is largely on the basis of severely depressed earnings and I expect those earnings to rise rapidly once the new administration makes the essential decisions on currency/fiscal stability/central bank issues.
  • FV
    Fredrik V.
    28 February 2018 @ 07:13
    This is a true gem! Pls keep and expand Discoveries!
  • DD
    Daniel D.
    27 February 2018 @ 22:07
    I think this was a very good overview from both a historical perspective as well as the current landscape from someone with boots on the ground. Makes me want to learn more.
  • RM
    Russell M.
    27 February 2018 @ 10:36
    Choosing to have backround music was a poor production decision.
  • OE
    Olav E.
    27 February 2018 @ 10:25
    This vas good! Good overview of the history and potential in Zimbabwe. Hope to see more on Africa here later. I'm very interested in the potential in Africa, and happy that RV finally makes some videos on it. This fall I'm doing a trip through Africa (North to South) to learn and explore the potential there. If anyone is interested in following my trip and learn more about the continent, Please follow me at: www.thetourofafrica.com
  • KK
    Kevin K.
    27 February 2018 @ 07:51
    This was a tad high level for my liking. How about some more details re individual businesses and sectors of interest maybe sharing some of the work his fund has been doing? Seems more like a promotional video for the fund with very little added value for the rest.
  • NS
    Nick S.
    27 February 2018 @ 04:39
    The former opposition leader mentioned as living in this video is actually quite deceased at the moment. Rest In Peace Mr. Tsvangirai.
    • CS
      C S.
      27 February 2018 @ 07:29
      You're right, died 2 weeks ago. Given days to weeks to live in the interview. Doesnt change the substance of the video though.
  • SS
    Steven S.
    27 February 2018 @ 05:57
    Fascinating. Wonderful historical commentary.
  • WP
    William P.
    27 February 2018 @ 04:02
    It is interviews like this that make RVTV so unique. Wonderful insight into a very small slice of the world.
  • PD
    Peter D.
    27 February 2018 @ 01:44
    I was under the impression from MSM that the New Boss was shaping up to be just another hack. This provides a great contra opinion. Also really enjoyed the footage and the story by this dude on the ground. He seems a tad optimistic. But makes a great case for sniffing around.
  • SP
    Steve P.
    27 February 2018 @ 00:46
    Zimbabwe tourism would be very seasonal and consistent bubble
  • GM
    Greg M.
    26 February 2018 @ 23:05
    Ian Smith is smiling. Rhodesians never die.
  • EL
    E. L.
    26 February 2018 @ 22:35
    Very Informative!
  • SP
    Steve P.
    26 February 2018 @ 21:26
    An extremely interesting update to a country that has occupied global news channels for so many years for all the wrong reasons. As one country manages to escape the clutches of an all consuming dictatorship, another just announces measures that may usher in another dictatorship with possibly much more consequence for the world community - China. What an interesting world we live in when lessons of history are seldom learnt much to the detriment of millions of those unfortunate to live under autocratic/dictatorship rule as highlighted by this video. An exceptional video RV. Well done again!
  • PB
    Pieter B.
    26 February 2018 @ 15:43
    Great overview! Thanks a lot!