Tuesday 10April 2018 18 BUSINESS DAY C002D5556 BRANDING Activating your brand within the African market Sibusiso Ndhlovu The African market, a segment that accounts for 38% of South Africa’s workforce, and was once known to be home to the lowest income population of this country. Facing challenges such as unemployment (the largest percentage of unemployed people are found within this segment), slow infrastructure growth and poor service delivery. But it’s not all doom and gloom. A recent increase in the number of educated individuals within the segment has given rise to a flowing black middle class that consists of corporate professionals and entrepreneurs. Flowing middle class because they tend to move out once they have made enough money but are always replaced with the next generation thus creating a flow. This has brought about a steady growth in infrastructures such as township-based malls and shopping plazas, as well as an increase in government built and private homes. The lack of knowledge within this unique market has led to a disconnect between brands and the segment consumers. Let’s explore ways in which the gap between brands and the township segment can be closed. How do you market to Africa’s extremely aspirational middle class that is more than 100 million strong, with a combined monthly spending power of R1.3 trillion? Township consumers are known to be mobile. So, you will have to actively find them in order for engagement to start, the best places to target them would be the following: Shopping centers and malls The increase in township infrastructure has given birth to a large number of malls and shopping plazas, which are located within the township. This gives brands the opportunity to directly engage with consumers through brand promotions and activations. Taxi ranks Although a number of township consumers do own their own personal vehicles public transport still ranks as the primary The days of printing out pamphlets and using that as a marketing strategy are dead. Consumers are spending more time online either surfing the web or on social media, the township market is not exempt to this. With an increase in smartphones and easier access to the internet (free Wi-Fi found near some libraries, clinics, and schools).It would be very advantages for brands to focus on building digital relationships with this segment this could easily be done through social media. Now that we have discussed the best ways to reach your audience we will discuss the four ways one can engage with the segment. These four factors contribute to an increase in engagement amongst this segment: Product trial: Product or service demonstrations allow for an increase in positive word of mouth and increase product/service knowledge amongst those present. Positive word of mouth is the most powerful tool for purchasing decision amongst this segment. Brand specials: Offermode of transport amongst the township population. It’s not rare to find at least two major taxi ranks within one township. Brands could invest in billboards or adverts that are found on screen monitors in the taxi rank to increase their brand exposure. Sporting events It’s no secret that sports are a favoured past time amongst the township population. Soccer and netball are two of the biggest sports played, with weekend matches being organised and monthly tournaments which bring a huge number of participants as well as spectators. These events give brands the opportunity to increase their exposure by sponsoring tournaments. Social gatherings From taverns to dance clubs to monthly social events, there is never a dull or uneventful moment within the township. Brands could create their own unique promotions to target this audience either by using activations or by sponsoring a social event themselves. Online ing unique package deals such as loyalty cards and 2 for 1 specials as well as discount pricing leads to an increase in the possibility of purchase. Social media: This segment is one of the fastest growing segments on social media the use of Facebook and Twitter serves as a platform for direct engagement and could increase the brand’s exposure. Target by region: Divide the segment by region and learn how to effectively communicate with each region. Because the African market is so complex something that worked in Soweto may not have the same effect in Mamelodi. It’s wise to research the different types of languages and cultures each region has in order to maximise engagement. This market has proven to be unique and ever-changing and as such brands need to keep themselves informed if they wish to effectively engage with this segment. Culled from Bizcommunity Sibusiso Ndhlovu is a brand strategist and owner of Arctic Moon, a brand development agency. Concept Nova unveils solution to boost fleet management in Nigeria Nigeria’s innovative information technology company, Concept Nova has launched a new solution that will boost fleet management in Nigeria. The innovative solution known as the FleeTrak Fleet Management Application, can optimally and efficiently manage 5-5000 fleet of vehicles. It provides total transparency of fleet, providing visibility into maintenance, vendor management, documentation, and fuel consumption as well as the lifespan efficiency of vehicle parts, alongside, other significant fleet management features. Speaking on the FleeTrak FMA, the Managing Director of Concept Nova, Chukwuma Ochonogor said in a statement: “The challenge of successful Management of fleet has been a task that has resulted to loss of revenue for most organisations, as this has been characterised with insincerity, theft, and mismanagement. The FleeTrak FMA has been designed to resolve all these issues and help organisations reduce cost while getting the optimum use of their fleet.” He added: “FleeTrak FMA has unique industry-winning features that set a standard for fleet management solutions. It is intuitively packed with modules that put you miles ahead of your competition. It was created not only to account for expenditure on fleet but also reduce the cost of managing your fleet. Concept Nova’s FleeTrak FMA has been modelled to meet all your fleet’s needs and effectively enhance its performance.” According to Ochonogor, the introduction of FleeTrak FMA in Nigeria became imperative after research showed that 95% of fleet managers acknowledged that a fleet management application would increase functionality, productivity and smart decision making about their fleet. “Lack of proper and easily accessible records can deter good decision making, efficiency, and increased profit. Fleet management has become a necessary and unavoidable expenditure for organisations, yet skyrocketing expenditures on fleet do not assure fleet longevity,” he said. For over two decades, Concept Nova has remained at the forefront of fleet management technology in Nigeria, providing innovative solution for B2B and B2C companies. Some of its solutions that has pioneered in Nigeria include the fuel monitoring solution and tracker solutions. FleeTrak FMA is designed to be user friendly to address most fleet management challenges. Marketing: British Airways expands African network British Airways’ has expanded its African network by starting a twiceweekly service to the Seychelles. The inaugural flight touched down at Mahé International Airport on Sunday 25 March and the schedule will see flights departing Heathrow’s Terminal 5 on Wednesdays and Saturdays, returning on Thursdays and Sundays. British Airways is the only airline offering a non-stop service from the UK, a statement said. The service is yearround and is operated by the airline’s newest aircraft, the Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner. There is a choice of four cabins: World Traveller (economy), World Traveller Plus (premium economy), Club World (business class) and an eight-suite First cabin. Coca-Cola unveils winners of 2018 ‘Score a Trip to Russia’ campaign Coca-Cola Company, the foremost global beverage company has unveiled the first set of winners in the “Score a Trip to Russia’ campaign. The campaign which is currently running allows the consumers have access to weekly draws that qualify them to an all-expense paid trip to go and experience the World Cup matches live in Russia 2018. The Coca-Cola “Score a Trip to Russia” promo intends to reward 22 lucky winners in Nigeria simply by buying a bottle of Coca- Cola, getting the code under the crown and texting the code to 5453; then following the SMS responses for a chance to be a winner of an all-expense journey to go see the games at Russia. This first stage reveals the 3 lucky winners that will be in Russia 2018 in June.
Tuesday 10April 2018 19 BUSINESS DAY Energy Report C002D5556 Oil & Gas Power Renewables Environment NPSC to embark on integrity audit of 5000km oil pipeline network …as NNPC claims its financial statements are up to date OLUSOLA BELLO The Nigerian Pipeline and Storage Company (NPSC), a subsdiary of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation NNPC which was created out of the former Pipelines and Products Marketing Company (PPMC), is to embark on comprehensive audit of the over 5000km of petroleum products and crude oil pipelines under its watch. The length and breath of the 5000 kilometer pipelines have been vandalized to the extent that for several years the NNPC has been unable to pump petroleum products through them to the 22 products depots across the country which the pipelines are to serve. This has been responsible for the reason why most of petroleum products from the coastal state to the hinterland are trucked with it attendance losses. According to Luke Anele, managing director of the Nigerian Pipeline and Storage Company (NPSC), the project which has already been approved by the NNPC Management is to be executed by the National Engineering and Technical Company (NETCO) an upstream subsidiary of the NNPC Group. “It covers the conduct of integrity test on crude pipelines, the products pipelines and our depots, with special emphasis on refinery attached depots and refinery evacuation lines,’’ he said. The NPSC boss said the outcome of the project would guide the company in arriving at informed decisions and enable appropriate strategies in the planned Private Public Partnership arrangement for the pipelines. Meanwhile the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) said it has successfully completed outstanding audit of the Group Financial Statements from the years 2011 to 2016. The audited backlog the corporation said has since been formally approved by the Board of the corpora- tion in line with extant laws governing the operations of the national oil company. Isiaka AbdulRazaq, chief financial Officer/group executive director (CFO/ GED), Finance & Accounts of the NNPC, while providing details of the development in an interview published in the Q1 2018 edition of the NNPC Magazine, said the delivery of the audited financial statements would help foster better relations with stakeholders and further promote transparency and accountability in the corporation. AbdulRazaq said the drive to achieve the clean slate dated back to August 2015, when the current Management of the Finance & Accounts Directorate took over the mantle of leadership and inherited a total of 65 unaudited financial statements for NNPC Group Corporate and its subsidiaries, covering 2011 - 2014. “There were, undoubtedly, challenges that led to the backlog which may have been beyond the control of the previous managements. However, the important factor was not to look to the past. We saw an opportunity to challenge the problem and resolved to clear the arrears in the shortest possible time,’’ the NNPC CFO said. The NNPC Management he said constituted a Project Steering Committee (PSC) under the Chairmanship of AbdulRazaq which met on a weekly basis with the auditors and all relevant stakeholders to identify and isolate key challenges and give them priority attention. “With this approach, Management achieved the first step of concluding the audit of the 2011 – 2012 financial positions and presented same to the Board in 2016 and in recognition of that modest achievement, the NNPC Board further mandated Management to clear the remaining outstanding reports for the years 2013 – 2016 and the result today is the delivery and Board approval of the audited Group Financial Statements as at 31 December 2016,’’ he said. Operators say renewable energy investment will resolve supply-demand gap in electricity KELECHI EWUZIE Industry stakeholders in the power sector say investment in renewable energy is the next big step to resolving supplydemand gap of electricity in Nigeria. They opine that in order to ensure that the power industry reaches its full potential and address the energy needs of citizens, government must ensure it create an enabling environment for investors to push funds into renewables. Industry professionals who understand the power sector workings are of the opinions that as low-carbon technologies and green energy continue to become more commonplace, it is important that Nigeria businesses realign their investments to accommodate these modern trends. Ayodele Oni, an energy expert observes that Renewable energy solutions in solar have increased markedly due to the falling cost of these technologies making them competitive. Similarly, with the low cost of gas more latterly compared to several years ago. According to him, “Connecting renewable energy onto the grid is becoming more affordable as a result of the abundant natural resources such as abundant of sun in the Northern regions in Nigeria” To them, while Nigeria has typically lagged behind developed markets in the uptake of renewable energy, with the right political and economic policy support from government, this will become a feature of the past as appetite for renewable energy increases. Successive governments in Nigeria had endured challenges with providing Nigerians with electricity as millions of people in rural areas across the country remains without power. Analysts argue that another alternative investment that can shape the power sector positively is the decentralisation of renewable energy arguing that if the Federal government embraced the shift and invest in the space, it will yield good returns. According to them “Distributed generation has the ability to bring more citizens into the energy fold through the building of smaller power stations at specific load centres, rather than building bigger, centralised stations that need to transmit power long distance”. To them, “The introduction of multiple, smaller grids can substantially assist in transmitting power to where it is needed, bringing down the number of people without electricity” Olusola Bello, Team lead, Analysts: Kelechi Ewuzie, Isaac Anyaogu, Graphics: Joel Samson. Email: firstname.lastname@example.org, Tel: +234-8023020011; +234-7037817378; +234-8036534708