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Shell rolls out expansion plan

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Vivo Energy Botswana is undertaking an expansion plan to offer more service and value at its service stations to meet customer needs through its new ‘Welcome’ convenience stores. The Welcome brand conveys a sense of hospitality, optimism and dynamism to meet the needs of customers. Launching the brand at Shell Marang Filling station in Francistown last week, Vivo Energy Supply and Distribution Manager, Oscar Isaacs said ‘Welcome’ offers convenience, variety and optimum satisfaction to customers, as it will have a shopping area and an eatery.

“Welcome is our very own warm modern convenience retail shop brand aimed to offer convenience, variety and optimum satisfaction to our customers. The opening of ‘Welcome’ convenience stores is a testimony to the real convenience that we want to bring to our customers,” said Isaacs. He said their objective is to bring the Shell brand closer to the people of Botswana by responding to the ever changing customer needs through providing them with high quality fuels, lubricants, shops, and other convenience retail products like quick service restaurants. Part of this objective also involves bringing new and exciting shop formats in the convenience retail space that provide customers with options and provide them with more offerings and more experiences.” Isaacs also highlighted that through the ‘Welcome’ shops, they aim to have the highest quality convenience offer in the Oil Marketing industry; through providing a superior customer service, right product range, refreshing ambiance and a high sense of professionalism.

He said the ‘Welcome’ brand shops would be rolled out to various Shell service stations across the country. Francistown City Mayor, Sylvia Muzila has applauded Vivo Energy Botswana for the new development pointing out that it brings benefits to the community as well as valuable employment opportunities to the youth in the area. “This is a very much welcome development due to job opportunities that will be availed to the youth of Francistown and surrounding areas. Developments such as this one contribute to boost the economy of the City of Francistown and in turn the country’s economy,” Muzila said.

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ADB grants BDC P4m for capacity building

Koobonye Ramokopelwa

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BDC head of human capital, Thabile Moipolai

African Development Bank has granted Botswana Development Corporation (BDC) over P4 million for training and capacity building of its staff members, the latter’s Managing Director, Bashi Gaetsaloe has disclosed.

The grant, which is $400,000 could not have come at a better time for BDC which has just begun a foray into the African continent. According to the Head of Human Capital at the investment arm of government, Thabile Moipolai, the grant will be used in areas such as investment, legal and risk, the three divisions which are considered critical as they continue to push the five -year strategy.

BDC has been given the leeway to invest outside Botswana and already some investments are being made in West Africa. Capacitating the staff in the above areas will come in handy for the African expansion.

Moipolai was answering a question from The Midweek Sun on Friday during the company’s annual stakeholder briefing where operational and financial reports for 2017/2018 were made public. The grant will be utilised in the next two years. BDC has reiterated its plan to continue to invest initiatives which are aimed at developing and retaining staff members.

“As we continue to build a strong BDC for the future, continuous learning and development is critical for our business success and therefore remains a priority area for Human Capital,” BDC 2017 annual report reads.

BDC has also developed a future focused competency based training that will be used to make informed learning and development decisions. “The (BDC) academy will also help BDC produce future leaders that are fluid and progressive through a bespoke leadership development,” reads the report.

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KBL announces return of Kickstart program

Koobonye Ramokopelwa

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Previous kickstart beneficiaries

Kgalagadi Breweries Limited, a unit of Sechaba has announced the return of Kickstart, a youth entrepreneurial development program that was suspended three years due to lack of financial resources, Managing Director, Renaud Beauchamp has told the media.

Before the program was put on ice, it had benefited over 70 small medium enterprises with funding, mentoring and market access assistance. According to Beauchamp, the revamped Kickstart will start next year, with an annual budget of about P1, 5 million. “We plan to invest in 15 new businesses every year,” he said at a press briefing which also announced a price reduction for its alcohol brands such as St Louis, Castel Lite and Black Label.

Successful applicants will receive about P200, 000 grants to execute their business ideas. Beauchamp stated that, they have been able to reintroduce Kickstart from ‘freed capital’ as a result of the recent reduction in Alcohol Levy from 55 percent to 35 percent. The clear beer price reduction comes after the Alcohol Levy, which made beer expensive, was slashed by President Mokgweetsi Masisi regime some few months ago.

Meanwhile, Assistant Minister of Trade, Industry and Investment has announced changes in trading hours for businesses that trade with liquor.

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