HLB Reliance Zambia at 10
Opinion, Strategy
With CEO Shuko at the Gala Event

Its 17 00hrs and I just beat traffic to get to Radisson blu Hotel to attend a birthday. You might be wondering why a financial news website would be writing about a birthday. Well, it’s not just any birthday. Its HLB Reliance Zambia’s 10th birthday or anniversary depending on your cup of tea.

We have been affiliated with this firm for over a year now. They sponsored our lunch to which we are infinitely grateful for. But it’s not just the generosity that we celebrate the company or its leadership for. No far from it. It is the human side of how they do business.

If I had to think of a word that would describe the leadership of the Zambia chapter of HLB, I would say “Empathy”. Shuko Ndhlovu (Managing Partner) is a class apart when it comes to CEOs. The soft spoken CEO has often exhibited philanthropic business acumen with his popular mantra “the giver is the receiver”. An eccentric statement in itself but it is one he swears by each business day.

A graduate of CBU and an alumni of the coveted ACCA, the former engineer has established himself and his company to compete “with / among” the big four in Zambia (KPMG et al.). One might event argue that he should not be here. He is an engineer for Christ sake. However, if there is one thing I have personally learned from the accounting and auditing maestro is that it is important to believe in yourself and be consistent in what you do (Never focus on the reward, through hard work it will come). In short, believe that a complete individual reinvention is possible (can I get an AMEN!!).

Through Shuko’s leaderhip, HLB Reliance Zambia understands the importance of keeping its clients informed and up to date with relevant information, tax and legal laws within Zambia. He has been known to be a supporter of small businesses. An entrepreneur himself, (often dabbling in a plethora of businesses from real estate, insurance among others) he knows better than anyone about the intricacies and challenges of small businesses in Zambia. The white knight of business in Zambia!

We firmly believe through HLB, small businesses have an opportunity to tap into main stream business practices from globally applied accounting standards to experience in execution of strategy that they bring to the fore. To achieve this, they have a strategic offering. According to their website, there strategic offerings include

  • Complementary services means HLB Reliance offices can work together to meet all client needs
  • Having 2 offices within Zambia gives simple and direct access to partners for potential clients
  • Regardless of size or location, the service offering from HLB Reliance (Zambia) member firms will ensure delivery of resources for specific projects would never be an issue
  • Strength in diversity, with different backgrounds and expertise HLB Reliance (Zambia) member firm offices will unify to present a holistic service offering greater than the sum of its parts
  • The HLB International global approach supports member firm clients wanting to expand outside their own territory, as well as those operating internationally

In modern business, any small firm requires a partner that is agile and adaptable. We have seen signals of this from the management team that has chosen not to be myopic in their dealings but to embrace the dynamism of the Zambian business environment.

However, their industry is not without challenges and to think that any company that deals with HLB Reliance would have found a silver bullet to success is lying to themselves. Far from it. It is the reason their management team applies what I would call a sixth sense in business. They are able to assess astute leadership and be the partner that that leadership requires in order to succeed. This requires very a high “emotional and community” quotient. The former allows you to understand the bankability of a small business and the latter allows one to determine whether that business if for the common good. In short, the the desire is to buy a Range Rover out of Earnings Before Interest Tax Depreciation and Amortization in the first 6 months of running your “going concern” then HLB are not the people you want. They will tell you the truth on what builds businesses for the long term.

In order to achieve the aforementioned, business sense comes from economies of scale. To achieve this, HLB Reliance (Zambia) is a partnership of HLB Reliance member firm of HLB International, a world-wide network of independent accounting firms and business advisers. HLB International’s global member firms are well-respected for responsive, timely and high-quality service.


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