Thursday, December 3, 2020

Barclays Botswana rebrand to Absa gains momentum

Barclays Bank of Botswana is on course to transition to Absa by the set deadline of June 2020.

This week the bank unveiled its first rebranded branch in the capital Gaborone at the Airport Junction Mall making it one of the first in the country to lose the spread-eagle emblem which has featured prominently throughout the Bank’s branches across the country and the African continent.

From light blue to red – this is one of the most visible changes that banking customers of Barclays and passers-by at the Airport Junction are now seeing as the bank readies to let go of the Barclays brand and usher in new one – Absa by June 2020.

Barclays Bank Botswana along its parent company Barclays Africa Group Limited (now Absa Group Limited), were given up to June 2020 to use the name “Barclays” and its blue bird logo by its former parent company Barclays PLC of Britain.

This was part of a transitional trade mark license agreement, entered into between Absa Group Limited (then known as Barclays Africa Group limited) and Barclays PLC as part of the separation arrangement.

The agreement provided that the Barclays brand may only be used in the rest of Africa up to 6 June 2020, subject to an additional two-year run off period in respect of debit and credit cards.

In July 2018 the group – Barclays Africa Group unveiled the bank’s new look under the name Absa in South Africa. At the same launch, the pan African lender said that it intends to rebrand its operations across Africa, most of which currently use the Barclays brand by 2020.

As part of the changes Barclays Botswana’s share code at the Botswana Stock Exchange bourse will also change from BBB to ABBL by 6 June 2020.

Barclays Botswana Managing Director – Keabetswe Pheko-Moshagane said, “As we get ready to enter a new era in the bank’s history, you can expect to see the energy and the vibrancy of the new Absa brand taking us to new levels. From our new branches, we will embrace our ambition of becoming an independent African bank, under a new brand: Absa”

Although some branches will start to look like Absa, the company will still be known as Barclays Bank of Botswana until the process is officially concluded, with several legal and regulatory milestones to achieve before a final official name change date can be announced. Moshagane said the bank will announce this date in due course.

 Recognising the significant size of the task ahead, and in preparation to change its name,  the Bank had already started introducing Absa’s warm, vibrant red colour palette on some of its assets, including bank branches and ATMs, to ensure we it is fully ready by the time the legal name changes.

It is anticipated that for the banker’s customers, all services are expected to continue as before throughout the name change process, and there shall be no extra requirements from customers. Barclays Botswana says it will not ask any customer for additional information during this period, and all bank records will remain the same before and after the transition.

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The Telegraph December 2

Digital edition of The Telegraph, December 2, 2020.