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Letshego unveils refreshed logo

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Pan African micro lender, Letshego Holdings unveiled a refreshed look of its brand last week in Gaborone. The company has a clear strategy of building a leading African financial services group focused on financial inclusion.

Speaking at the company’s financial results stakeholder engagement on Friday, group head of corporate affairs, Mythri Sambasivan-George said, “Delivering on this will only be possible through strong relationships with our customers, with our strategic partners, and with communities. Our refreshed brand reflects this sense of Letshego, the company, providing support and upliftment through the base, and symbolising growth with our customers and communities through upward motion of the Letshego logo. Our promise to our stakeholders, ‘Let’s improve life’, comes alive as we share news of continued progress on strategic delivery.”

She also noted that as part of the company’s transformation process, it will rename some of its foreign based businesses during the year 2016. The businesses will be renamed Letshego.

The refreshed brand look and logo will also rollout in its 10 country footprint to build a leading financial services brand in the continent. “We believe this is an opportune time to refresh our brand as Letshego marks 18 years of existence this year, having made strides in diversifying across our footprint,” she added.

The company will also focus on delivering simple, appropriate and affordable solutions with access anytime, anywhere; with enhancements to customer access points continuing across the Letshego footprint.

Business Trends has also learnt that the use of mobile money is well established in Kenya and following this, similar initiatives will be explored in other countries with suitable environments.

New developments include securing a dedicated Letshego short code in Mozambique, Namibia and Rwanda plus registration of Faidika’s customer access points in Tanzania as agencies from the newly acquired Advans Bank Tanzania.

Moreover, the company said continued investment in people and systems has strengthened its operating platform, with Letshego Mozambique now live with USSD mobile banking. Additional customer solutions in partnership with a local mobile operator in Mozambique are planned for 2016, with similar initiatives being progressed in other deposit taking countries.

The enhancement of existing products to ensure continued market relevance continues while for micro and small enterprises, agriculture, health and education solutions have been piloted in East Africa.   

Letshego Holdings was incorporated in 1998, and is headquartered in Gaborone, Botswana and was publicly listed on the Botswana Stock Exchange in 2002.

It is a Botswana International Financial Services Centre – accredited holding company with lending and deposit taking subsidiaries across ten countries in Southern, East and West Africa-Botswana, Kenya, Lesotho, Mozambique, Namibia, Rwanda, Swaziland, Tanzania, Nigeria and Uganda.

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SMEs benefit from Consumer Fair growth

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The Botswana Investment and Trade Centre (BITC) has applauded Botswana Consumer Fair’s continued efforts to improve small to medium enterprises’ linkages.

BITC Chief Executive Officer, Keletsositse Olebile, when opening the fair, said the event has provided interactive forum for both local and foreign exhibitors. He said the shopping show has enabled manufacturers, wholesalers and traders to market their products directly to consumers, an alignment to government’s endeavors.

“As part of government intention, we continually encourage local sourcing by retailers and distributors,” said Olebile who is just few months into his new post. He further celebrated the growth of Botswana Consumer Fair over the years, attributing the expansion to quality of goods displayed at the previous shows.“Improved quality and increased variety of wares increases the interest of the visitors and makes them look forward to returning the following year,” said Olebile.

This year’s exhibitors at the 13th event still running under the banner: ‘It is more than just shopping’ have been drawn from Lesotho, Zambia, Swaziland, South Africa, Nigeria, Ghana, Kenya, Egypt, Japan, India, Tanzania and Zimbabwe.

Consumer Fair is a flagship event for Fairgrounds Holdings and provides a platform for small medium enterprises (SMEs) from the different sectors of the economy to showcase and promote their products and services. In addition, the SMEs are expected to establish long term business linkages and promote local manufactured goods.Fairgrounds Holdings is already optimistic that the Fair immensely contribute to the socio-economic development of the country through supporting SMEs.

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‘Involve SMMEs in standards development’-Minister

Keikantse Lesemela

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Minister of Investment, Trade and Industry, Bogolo Kenewendo appealed to Botswana Bureau of Standards (BOBS) to include the Small, Medium and Micro Enterprises (SMMEs) when developing the standards to improve the sector.

She said the Ministry of Investment, Trade and Industry has identified three areas of focus going forward which are modeled on SMME development, investment promotion and export development apexes. “I would like to implore you to include this sector in standards development processes and assist in improving SMMEs conformity to standards and compliance to technical regulations,” said Kenewendo.

Speaking during the BOBS Technical Committee Members appreciation ceremony on Thursday, Kenewendo explained that the important roles of standards are underpinned by the aspirations and intentions espoused in both diversified export led economic growth and job creation as priority areas. “It goes without saying that the diversification of the economy requires a National Quality Infrastructure and Technical Regulatory Framework that promote competitiveness of Botswana goods and services.”

She also emphasized that an effective National Quality Infrastructure and Technical Regulatory Framework are essential as they provide crucial links to global trade, market access and export competitiveness through their contribution to consumer confidence in product safety, quality and the environment.Since inception in 1997 BOBS has published more than 1700 standards through 48 technical committees across several sectors of the economy; 109 certification licences have been issued against some of these standards. Currently 46 Botswana Standards are being implemented through the standards regulations with a view to protecting the health and safety of consumers as well as protection of the environment.

On her note, BOBS Vice Chairperson of the Standards Council, Professor Edward Dintwa said standards are powerful tools for helping organisations that implement them to realize their potential, have access and compete in the global marketplace. “In this highly competitive and complex world, issues of sustainability and productivity, viewed from economic, environmental and societal perspectives require that businesses must be more efficient in their operations, which can be achieved through the implementation of standards”.

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