Claim Mabuku says it will celebrate its 50th anniversary on April 28, with a sense of renewed hope to achieve new growth and efficacy.
The going has been a bittersweet song for the company which was on the verge of collapse around 1990. They only got saved by the decision of management to go into publishing textbooks for schools between 2012 and 2014.
The decision meant many of their books being approved in public and private schools leading to an increase in their capital and profit growth.
Claim Mabuku general manager Andrew Chisamba said the book retailer organisation will look back on their fifty year stay in Malawi with pride for the contributions they have made, at the same time having their eyes fixed on further expansion.
He said Claim will increase its reach to every district in Malawi.
“We intend to open a bookshop in each district in Malawi. This will allow us to reach out to every household with affordable literature. Currently we only have thirteen shops in twelve districts.
“We are also planning to establish a printing press which will enable us keep capital for printing in house while servicing our printing needs. This will also be a business venture considering the lack of serious printing houses in the country,” said Chisamba.
He said the company is set on expanding its five fleet of vehicles in order to ease transportation of its books to markets.
Chisamba, however, said minus the strides that they have made throughout the years, the going has not exactly been all rosy as they have often been challenged by the unpredictability of the book market and other market limiting factors.
Blantyre Synod presbytery clerk Reverend Buxton Maulidi said the church has been helped in the spreading the gospel.
He said: “They have supported us by providing spiritual-related literature which has helped our Christians to grow in faith. They have also taken the lead in sensitising our flock on the usage of hymns and Bibles plus modernification of the same for our liking.”
Book Publishers Association of Malawi president Alfred Msadala said Claim Mabuku hasover the years offered competitive competition to other publishers which has benefitted local writers.
“Claim was established as an institution to consolidate and sale to Christian literature. With time the publishing aspect grew and partner churches surrendered its literature to Claim for publishing as well as distribution,” he said.
Polytechnic lecturer in media studies Temwani Mgunda said the importance of literature to a life of any scholar cannot be overstated and the role that Claim has played has complemented well aspirations of many students in the country.
The celebrations will be marked by a number of activities.n