THE Dynamos leadership believe they have started the process to push into motion the complex exercise of unlocking the true commercial value of the country's biggest football club, just a few months before the Glamour Boys turn 50-years-old. DeMbare are considered a sleeping giant, with huge potential to be transformed into a commercial success story, but the club's real value remains untapped almost half-a-century since its formation.
While Orlando Pirates, who trace their humble origins to the same community environment that gave birth to Dynamos have turned themselves into a multi-million-dollar establishment, the Glamour Boys remain trapped in a crippling web of poverty.
The Harare giants have nothing to show, in terms of either immovable or movable assets, or investments in stocks, to show for their phenomenal success in 50 years dominated by a blaze of glory on the pitch.
But the leadership at the flagship football club in this country want to change all that and believe they laid a firm foundation for that during their retreat in Mutare on Saturday and Sunday where they discussed the past and future of their team.
The Dynamos board and executive invited business executives, a seasoned auditor and a top lawyer to address their two-day indaba at the Mutare retreat where they focused on a number of issues, including corporate governance and unlocking the true commercial value of their brand.
Business executive Freddy Chawasarira, a former chief executive of ZimTrade, lawyer Andrew Musengezi, LED Travel and Tours managing director Ben Gwarada and C.O Nhachi, who dwelt on financial controls, were the guest professionals who spent two days with the club's leadership.
The Dynamos board was represented by its vice-chairman, Freddie Mkwesha, Robson Rundaba, Bernard Marriot, chief executive Casper Muzenda and secretary Chris Kasiyazi.
The club's executive was represented by chairman Kenny Mubaiwa, vice-chairman Webster Chikengezha, secretary-general Ray Kazembe and treasurer Moses Chikwariro.
DeMbare patron Webster Shamu, who is the Minister of Media, Information and Publicity, addressed the club's leadership and their resource professionals on Saturday and, while hailing the tranquility prevailing at the club, told them there was need to take this giant to the next level.
The Saturday session was a marathon one that went on for more than 13 hours, starting at 10am and ending at 11:15pm.
Delegates were back in session again the following morning at 8am and the retreat ended at 11:15am as the DeMbare officials dashed for the trip back home to watch their team's Mbada Diamonds Cup first round tie against Quelaton.
Club spokesman Kazembe yesterday described the retreat as a fruitful indaba that touched at the heart of challenges that have been dogging the club and how to conquer them.
"It was a fruitful meeting and we touched on a wide section of issues that have to do with our club, the challenges it has faced in the past, the ones it is facing now and what should be done for the future," said Kazembe.
"We believe it was quite an eye-opener for all of us, the board and the executive, because we had professionals, in their different fields, giving us an honest opinion of how things should be done in terms of running such a huge establishment like Dynamos.
"We looked at a range of issues, including corporate governance and the formulation of strategies, financial controls, contracts and legal issues and we believe that we got quite a lot from the professionals that we had out there.
"Basically, what we had was a general audit of the football club called Dynamos to see where we stand, where we have come from, the challenges we have faced, the challenges we face now and those we might face tomorrow and how to move forward as a strong unit.
"When you just meet as the executive or the executive and the board, you tend to lose sight of key issues that someone who is watching from outside and who is coming in with a fresh mind could pick up and I have to say the professionals we had in Mutare made a huge difference."
Kazembe said they came up with a committee that will draw up the team's strategic plan.
"What we are doing is strategically plan for the future and you need to have a concrete and workable plan for that so that we will be able to make the future better than our past because that is what leaders are meant to do," said Kazembe.
"We have set up a committee that will draw up our strategic plan, basing it on what we discussed and learnt in Mutare, and that committee will have to report back and the club will then sit down and come up with the Dynamos Football Club strategic plan.
"Obviously, it's not something that needs to be done without proper planning and that is why we are asking for patience but there is no doubting our commitment because we came out of our retreat enlightened and we feel really fresh to add value to this club as we move forward."
Kazembe said even their experts conceded that there was no questioning the huge potential that the Dynamos brand possesses.
"We can't over-emphasise on the potential of this brand, it's a very huge brand but if we don't share ideas with experts on how best we can transform our brand then we would be lying that the future could be different.
"As an executive we also felt that the retreat was good in terms of team-building and binding us together so that we come out of it with one vision for this club and, I believe, we succeeded in doing that.
"We are confident as we march into the future and we trust that if we can implement some of the things that came out of that retreat, we could play our part in changing the face of Dynamos Football Club."
Unlike previous DeMbare leaders, this executive, led by Mubaiwa, has steered clear of the in-house turbulence that usually rocks the leadership and has maintained a level of stability last seen in the mid-90s to the turn of the millennium.
It was during that period that Dynamos reached the final of the African Champions League in 1998 in what remains the club's finest hour in their 49-year history.
"The message of stability was the one that the patron preached during his address and he said it was refreshing to note that the club has had few boardroom issues, related to its executive, in the past year or so," said Kazembe.
Dynamos have the potential to become a money-spinning entity with a number of big sponsors in their fold but the country's biggest team has somehow remained trapped, for decades, in a net of poverty.
A team like Dynamos should by now have its own television network and dedicated slots on various commercial radio stations that have come to life in the country.