|Born||Douglas Tawanda Munatsi|
March 4, 1962
|Died||November 29, 2021 (aged 59)|
Northfields Complex, Harare
|Cause of death||Carbon monoxide poisoning from fire|
|Alma mater||University of Zimbabwe, American University, Harvard Business School|
|Organization||Zimbabwe Investment and Development Agency|
|Known for||Founding CEO of BancABC Zimbabwe|
Douglas Tawanda Munatsi, known simply as Doug in Zimbabwe, was a business executive and entrepreneur. He was known mostly for leading BancABC since its formation in 2000, until its acquisition by Atlas Mara in 2014. He was appointed the Zimbabwe Investment and Development Agency by President Emmerson Mnangagwa in 2019.
Munatsi was born in Highfield and grew up in Mufakose in Harare before his family lived in Gweru and Masvingo. His father died when he was a teenager, but he endured and made it to the University of Zimbabwe.
Munatsi studied for his first degree, a Bachelor of Business Studies, at the University of Zimbabwe, and later did his masters at American University. He also read and completed the Harvard Business School's Advanced Management Program.
Munatsi served as the Group Chief Executive Officer of ABC Holdings Limited from 2000 when it was established until December 31, 2014 when it was sold to Atlas Mara.
Before becoming BAncABC CEO in 2000, Munatsi was the Managing Director of its predecessors First Merchant Bank and Heritage Investment Bank which he founded. Heritage Investment Bank which he founded in 1995, was one of the first black-owned banks.
Two years later, when Anglo American, one of the most influential companies in Zimbabwe, wanted to sell out of First Merchant Bank, the country’s oldest merchant bank, Munatsi led a consortium that outcompeted bigger rivals for the FMB stake. He did this by travelling to the UK to meet with Philip Baum, then head of Anglo.
In 2000, Munatsi merged FMB with udc, a leasing firm, and Bard discount house, to set up the African Banking Corporation, now BancABC, which he listed in Botswana. He later won the backing of Atlas Mara, run by Bob Diamond, a former Barclays executive. Atlas Mara became a significant shareholder, with a promise to shore up the bank’s capital. But that relationship turned sour, when John Vitalo, appointed as an executive without Munatsi’s okay, reneged on a deal to recapitalise the business.
In 2014, after the relationship broke down, Munatsi and his partners, Francis Dzanya and Beki Moyo, sold their interest and left a business that they had founded. The three then formed a new private equity outfit, DBF Capital, which is invested in energy, metals and insurance.
Prior to founding Heritage Investment Bank, Douglas Munatsi served as an executive of the International Finance Corporation.
He served as a Non-Executive Director of Union Bank of Nigeria Plc from July 12, 2013 to February 24, 2015.
Munatsi was an Associate of the Institute of Bankers of Zimbabwe. Munatsi had in 2019 been appointed to the RBZ’s monetary policy committee but stepped down to focus on ZIDA after his appointment at the agency.
Doug Munatsi owned Kunatsa Estates in Matepatepa, Mashonaland Central Province, which was toured by President Emmerson Mnangagwa as a model of large scale farms that are expected to drive agricultural growth.
Douglas Munatsi, the CEO of the Zimbabwe Investment and Development Agency, died in a house fire on 29 November 2021. Police said they were investigating the fire as possible arson. A publication reported that Munatsi died a day before he was due to meet Mnangagwa.
Munatsi died at Northfields, a complex in Harare’s Avenues area, according to the residents’ association. In a statement, the resident's association said:
"The association wishes to advise stakeholders that at approximately 02.50AM, on Monday 29th November, a fire was detected by the occupant of flat C9 in Northfields. There was no electricity at the time due to a cable fault. The occupant in C10 heard commotion and noise, and went to his balcony to investigate further. There, he heard from the occupant of C9 that there was a fire and he asked to call the fire brigade. At 02.59, the fire brigade was called, and they arrived at 03.11. They fought the blaze for 2hrs, and despite their efforts, they were unable to save the occupant of C9, who is believed to be Mr Douglas Munatsi."
To read more about Douglas Munatsi's death see: Douglas Munatsi Death
Doug is survived by his wife Bindzile, and three children.
- OBITUARY | Doug Munatsi: ‘It was not an easy life to abandon, to come and serve my country’, NewZWire, Published: November 29, 2021, Retrieved: November 29, 2021
- Fungi Kwaramba, , The Herald, Published: 28 August, 2020, Accessed: 28 August, 2020
- ZIDA CEO Douglas Munatsi dies in house fire, police suspect arson, ZimLive, Published: November 29, 2021, Retrieved: November 29, 2021