The South African Breweries Ltd, the South African operation of SABMiller plc, announced today plans to change its corporate identity in South Africa. At the same time, the company has launched a new corporate brand campaign, which reasserts its South African identity and acknowledges the role of South Africans in its global expansion.
 
SAB Ltd managing director Tony van Kralingen said that the company had spent nearly a year developing the new campaign, which launched today.

The identity and brand campaign are part of a major drive to re-establish its South African roots and emphasise its culture and commitment to South Africa and South Africans, including the social and economic upliftment of communities and the promotion of responsible alcohol use.

"SAB Ltd is still the largest contributor to SABMiller's global earnings. The growth and success of our parent company is due in most part to the expertise, talent and energy of South Africans, many of whom now head up our international operations. Yet with our global expansion has come some confusion in the minds of certain of our stakeholders about our roots, our nationality and pedigree.

"Nearly a year's research across all our stakeholder groups from employees to government, NGO's, customers, suppliers and consumers, showed that while we were both admired and respected, some uncertainty was growing about who we are and what we mean to South Africa.

"We have taken the opportunity to do two things: firstly, we have launched our first corporate brand campaign in nearly a decade, which illustrates clearly who we have to thank for our success, while also highlighting our role in the South African economy and society. Secondly, we took the decision to revamp and redesign our corporate identity, which was last changed in the early 1980s.

"The old beer tankard corporate identity is being replaced with a fresh, circular design. We listened closely to what our stakeholders told us and therefore, we have embedded "The South African Breweries" in our identity to reinforce our South African personality."

Logistically, the new corporate identity will be implemented at SAB's 70 installations, including its seven breweries and on nearly 500 vehicles, which will have been completed inside a week with the help of a 100-person team.

In line with its corporate campaign, SAB Ltd also announced that it will be sponsoring the SABC series "Great South Africans", the feature series of which will be screened starting in September. Since early June, South Africans have been invited to nominate the greatest South Africans of all time and more than 95% of all South Africans have been reached through the campaign, based on the BBC's series "Great Britons". More than 40,000 votes have been cast in South Africa since June.