Cummins, a global power leader and corporation of complementary business units that design, manufacture, distribute and service diesel and natural gas engines and related technologies, is growing its business in Zimbabwe and Mozambique as market demands start showing signs of improvement. With its Southern African head office in Johannesburg, South Africa; the company enjoys an established presence through its wholly owned Cummins branches in Zimbabwe and Mozambique with their headquarters in Harare and Tete respectively.
Established in Zimbabwe in 1988, the company enjoys a solid and enviable reputation for its quality products over many years, despite challenging market conditions during the past two decades, with markets dwindling and softening; innovative and resilient personnel have persevered and today the company shows signs of growth as the market slowly stirs and improves. Despite the country’s lack of foreign direct investment, the company will invest in tooling to support growing business needs in the power generation, mining, filtration and aftermarket businesses.
“We are here to support our customers, and will invest according to our business needs to ensure our customer requirements are met. Without our customers, we don’t have a business,” says recently appointed Director of Operations, Cummins Southern African Regional Office, Ms Racheal Njoroge. Responsible for the leadership, operations and strategic direction for Cummins Zimbabwe and Mozambique and reporting to Mr Thierry Pimi, Managing Director for Cummins Southern Africa, Njoroge has held a number of senior management positions within the global Cummins organization. Joining the company at its head office in Columbus, Indiana, in the USA as a Business Analyst Intern in the IT division in 2006; she saved the company a whopping $1million in her first year. Her success quickly led to several roles in the Global IT Strategy division, fast tracking and securing her career within the Group and ultimately bringing her back to the Continent of her birth.
Whilst business in Zimbabwe is slowly starting to turn, the Cummins brand is relatively new in Mozambique; having been introduced to the market in 2012. With a strong presence in the mining segment, strategic growth is geared towards enhancing the filtration, power generation and automotive businesses in the country.
Business opportunities abound in these two adjoining countries; despite forex challenges, political instability and risks of currency devaluations. Zimbabwe’s need for transport, real estate and mining infrastructural development poses many opportunities for the global power leader. In the face of investor concern driven by political unrest in Mozambique; forex volatility is stabilizing in the country, resulting in business steadfastness and determination in the market. Opportunities prevail in the agricultural, oil and gas industries of Mozambique and business is set to increase remarkably next year. As head of the Cummins wholly owned operations, Ms Njoroge is cautiously optimistic about the markets and has plans in place to accelerate business growth for 2018. Currently, operations are focused on the mining industries with ambitions to expand the complementary businesses. “Our clients have come to value the quality of the Cummins products across our various business lines; including mining, filtration, power generation and automotive,” she explains.
Cummins also plans on investing in human capital in both Zimbabwe and Mozambique by hiring additional employees to support its growing business needs; combining seasoned industry leaders and solid regional business culture. “We also plan on investing in training and development of our new hires to enhance our Cummins brand in the countries. We will increase our business development and technical resources to suit the needs of our customers. We plan on building a diverse customer base in both the mining and power generation segments,” she elaborates. The aftermarket segment is also earmarked for growth and expansion in support of the Cummins products in the mining, power generation and automotive industries in the countries. “My vision for both countries is to grow the businesses by double digits next year as there are many opportunities in these markets; and of course to exceed our customers’ expectations in every way,” she adds.
Cummins Zimbabwe and Mozambique are on track to grow and expand, backed by Ms Njoroge’s strategic acumen. Under her leadership; the company is well set to achieve its targets. “Our company is all about people, walking the talk and living our values. We need to make people feel valued. I was pushed by people that believed in me; and I will do the same for others, we need to pay it forward. This will be my legacy,” she says.
A Kenyan by birth, Njoroge is a Business professional with over ten years’ experience in IT, Strategy and Operations. She also holds an MBA from Ball State University in Muncie, Indiana and a Bachelor
of Science in Management Information Systems and Business Administration with a minor in Computer Science from Winona State University of Minnesota in the United States. Within her ambit, she is also responsible for various departments including Supply Chain, Technical Services, the Power Generation Aftermarket, Warranty, Dealer Network in Mauritius, Malawi, Madagascar, Namibia, Swaziland and Lesotho, Aftermarket Service & Support. She is living her dream: “I always wanted two things whilst residing in the US: to return to Africa and run a business, I am now doing both!” she concludes.