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Local products carry NDP4

From the left, Confidente newspaper editor Max Hamata, Breweries Managing Director, Wessie van der Westhuizen,CEO of Team Namibia, Daisry Mathias, Executive Chairman of the O& L Group, Sven Thieme, and Chief Commercial Officer at NEPC, Roy Klassen at the Team Namibia and O& L networking brunch on Wednesday where the theme of the celebrations was National Pride. (Photograph by Patricia Heitha).

Despite higher prices of local products as compared to foreign products on the shelves, O&L Namibia and Team Namibia called for consumers to support local products, as this helps to shape the economy through employment creation and profit retention within the borders. This view was aired during a joint Team Namibia and the O&L Group networking brunch to celebrate national pride, held on Wednesday at the Country Club, Windhoek where Sven Thieme, Executive Chairman, O&L and Daisry Mathias, CEO, Team Namibia were the hosts.

The event was in preparation of the celebrations for Namibia’s 25th jubilee on 21 March. In her opening remarks Mathias said, “there has been a shift towards ‘being real’ and by this I mean, consumers have become more discerning and are looking for value instead of just the ‘cheapest’ option.” “As individuals and consumers, we are seeking more meaning and purpose within our lives and demanding more quality and services from companies who display good values. This insight qualifies Team Namibia’s brand positioning, which inherently meets many of these criteria,” she added. There was also a call to educate the consumer on the advantages of supporting local products as compared to foreign products. Said Mathias, “our priorities at Team Namibia are aligned to the government’s development objectives as set out in Vision 2030, the 4th National Development Plan and more specifically the Ministry of Trade and Industry’s Growth at Home strategy.” “We believe by growing consumer markets and facilitating market access, we are able to help make a direct contribution to increased business output, a more diversified commodity base and indirectly to reduced unemployment and ‘income inequality’,” she stressed. Also present at the event were senior management and staff of the O&L Group of Companies; representing their respective operating companies and consumer brands who also contributed to the open platform and reiterated the need to support local brands. Meanwhile Mathias shared findings from their 2013 stakeholder survey report which indicated that 55% of their respondents are likely to buy a product that carries the Team Namibia logo, with a strict condition that only if these products are in fact Namibian. “We are confident the country of origin methodology responds to this need. While 47% of respondents indicated they are unaware which products/services are Namibian, 75% of total respondents indicated they would like to be informed via the media,” she added.

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