By Mpho Kuhlman
Sescenti Salt, a local youth owned brand established in 2018, was set up to bring in different types of food stuffs that weren’t necessarily available in the Botswana market.
The company’s PR specialist, Brilliant Kodie says they bounced around a few ideas and collectively came to a decision that our first product should be a product that is made locally in Botswana. “That was when we got the ball rolling and decided that the first product that would be introduced to the market and to Batswana would be salt,” he says.
Since the oldest method of salt production is through the evaporation method, Sescenti salt is made from the pans in Sua in the Makgadikgadi region. Coined from Latin, Sescenti means the number six hundred (600). With a lot of names having gone through a vetting process Sescenti became an instant favourite and got the most votes because of its catchy and original nature. The name and the packaging easily makes the brand stand out from competition.
The brand has its own packaging, Sescenti Packaging which came about due to the realization that there aren’t many food packaging companies in Botswana that are willing to do a wide range of products. “Majority of the FMCG (Fast Moving Consumer Goods) companies in Botswana tend to start with one product and stick to that one product only, instead of growing their brand and the business. We saw this loophole and decided to take this opportunity,” he says.
Sescenti’s initial product was salt, which was the spearhead of the brand for the first few months, then with the company’s first little expansion they brought in pepper -because salt and pepper are two products that go hand in hand. The product range will continue to grow and a few new products will be introduced into the market within the coming months.
“We expect a high level of competition from other condiment brands, the government is doing quite a lot to support many local brands that are up and coming and those that are already established. This is encouraging a lot of people to start up and bring what they can to the table,” he says.
Sescenti products can be found in Sefalana outlets country wide, Spar (Main Mall, G-west, Block 3, Block 6 and Mogoditshane), Trade World, Square Mart and Shoprite. “Our prices are quite competitive in the market, obviously salt being quite a low-cost product we had to take that into account when doing the pricing,” says Brilliant adding that competition in the market is always good as it forces one to increase their quality so as to not lose their customers to another brand.