Midlands State University and ZB Financial Holdings signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) on the 25th of October 2023 at the Gweru Main Campus that will see the institutions collaborate on research, innovation and commercialisation.

Speaking during the signing ceremony, MSU Vice Chancellor, Professor Victor Ngonidzashe Muzvidziwa highlighted that the University is excited to partner a giant in the financial services sector.

“This partnership expresses the desire by industry to support the rallying national developmental and higher education philosophy of Education 5.0. and this is an example of an intentional and collaboration-based strategy to nurture academia-industry partnerships that not only strengthen networks but stretch the limits of innovation.

“There is no doubt that both parties will leverage on the strengths and expertise of each party to drive innovation, promote financial inclusion and develop a robust talent-pipeline in the financial technology sector,” said Professor Muzvidziwa.

Professor Muzvidziwa added that the friendly relationship is designed to promote sustainable and productive collaboration and exchange between the University, ZB Financial Holdings, researchers, students, innovators and employees of both parties will now be operationalised from today.

In his remarks, ZB Financial Holdings Group Chief Executive Officer, Dr. Shepherd Fungura expressed optimism about the strategic partnership in that it will see the two premier institutions trailblaze in innovation and commercialisation.

“As ZB, innovation and agility are at the core of our business- our people are our innovation and in this era of digital, the development of innovation ecosystems becomes crucial hence, the need for strategic partnerships such as this one.

“It is my belief that this symbiotic relationship will ensure research collaborations and problem solving, technology knowledge transfer leading to relevant product development, talent identification and student empowerment, work related learning and continuous promotion of innovation,” said Dr. Fungura.

The momentous MOU was jointly signed by the MSU Vice Chancellor, Professor Muzvidziwa, and the ZB Financial Holdings Group CEO, Dr. Fungura, in a symbolic fusion of knowledge and innovation, as if two celestial bodies had aligned to unleash a brilliant cosmic collision of creativity and collaboration.

Following the signing ceremony, the ZB Financial Holdings delegation, guided by the MSU Research and Innovation-Executive Director, Professor Laurine Chikoko, was struck with awe as they embarked on a tour of the sprawling MSU Innovation Hub, which showcased groundbreaking innovations from across the University’s faculties, leaving them filled with wonder and admiration for the ingenuity and creativity of the institution’s students and staff.

With the signing of the MOU, Midlands State University and ZB Financial Holdings established a strong foundation for their collaboration, setting the stage for a long-term partnership that will foster mutual growth, innovation, and success in the region.

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