The Assistant Minister of Investment, Trade and Industry Biggie Butale says rebranding of Selebi-Phikwe Diversification Unit is not a waste of public coffers but an important “part of promotional activity” for the troubled old town. He said this at parliament on Monday.
“Even if the honourable MP will consider the advertisement and rebranding outside the mining town unnecessary we at SPEDU believe the move is necessary as part of promotional activity,” argued Butale on Monday.
Butale who was answering a supplementary question from Selebi-Phikwe Member of Parliament Dithapelo Keorapetse said he was concerned about the plight of his constituents in the wake of the unexpected closure of the mine recently and the subsequent retrenchment of the workers amid uncertainties of SPEDU projects envisaged to revamp the town’s economy outside the mineral resources.
The much hyped Pula Steel and agro processing plants amongst other initiatives under SPEDU projects are expected to save the economic life of Selebi-Phikwe outside the mining sector of copper and nickel in the region.
“SPEDU has re-branded. This entailed changing or refreshing the brand identity so as to be aligned with the corporate strategy and position itself well among it’s several stakeholders- employees, management, media, people of SPEDU region and the general public,” Butale added, refuting Keorapetse assertions that re-branding and advertisement of SPEDU was a waste of time and public funds.
The major elements for building the SPEDU brand strategy includes brand identity, logo, corporate colours, images and symposium, brand promise, brand name awareness, perceived quality/aspiration, loyalty (employee and stakeholders as well as the provision of information and education.
“The brand was developed through extensive engagement both with internal and external stakeholders,” Butale further noted, adding “the total costs including the brand strategy development, internal and external communication, advertising and production of promotional material amounted to P1,423,296.”
It was necessary for SPEDU to rebrand in order to respond to the stakeholders comments on the current image and how they perceive it.
BCL was recently placed under provisional liquidation causing angst amongst the residents of the mining town.