With over 26 branches nationwide, the Botswana Stock Exchange-quoted Funeral Services Group (FSG) recently launched what they termed a “deluxe scheme”.
With a payment of P210 a month, the Deluxe scheme covers a casket, tombstone, a funeral program, and P10 000 for groceries amongst others, resulting in P50 000 worth of cover. Even as the group’s first scheme was launched in 1996, their cheapest scheme remains at P30 a month cover.
Group MD of FSG, Mike Nicolic, also revealed that the group has plans to open new facilities across Botswana this month as well as introduce the use of mobile services for their operations.
In 2008, FSG was the first of its kind in Botswana as well as Southern Africa to be listed in the Botswana Stock Exchange. The company’s audited results for the first quarter of 2012 showed a 19 percent growth in profit before tax and 16 percent increase in total revenue.
The Group has operations running in Botswana, Zambia and South Africa and has plans to expand further into Zambia. An important shareholder in the group, BIHL, is the parent company to Botswana Life, a FSG’s largest corporate shareholder with 25 460 730 million shares or 21.22 percent.
Botswana Life is arguably the country’s largest insurance company. As an entity, FSG encompasses companies such as Kagiso’s Funeral Parlour, Lynn’s funeral parlour and M&N coffin and manufacturers.
Officiating at the launch ceremony at Masa this past Thursday, Deputy Minister of Presidential Affairs, Gloria Somolekae, said that FSG has an impressive record considering the area that it operates in, death, which she described as an area sensitive to Batswana.
She said that FSG is an example of how entrepreneurs are a special bunch of people who identify opportunities where some cannot, who preserve and see possibilities where many do not.
“The centrality of entrepreneurs in growing; the economy must be highlighted,” said Somolekae.
Somolekae described how the global crisis of 2008 served as proof to Botswana that diversification of the country’s economy was essential. She mentioned the importance of entrepreneurship in the development and sustenance of the Economic Diversification Drive.
“Manufacturing and job creation are music to the ears of government,” said Somolekae.
She noted the growth experienced by the group, saying the business was established in 1993 with only three employees, one Motswana and two expatriates.
According to Somolekae, FSG should be commended for allowing members of the society, especially poorer ones, to bury their loved ones in dignity due to their affordable and flexible schemes.