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Going ‘Uphil’ with determination

Going ‘Uphil’ with determination

Ulandi Philander, owner of Uphil Brand and Promotions has worked hard to be where she is today.
She is no stranger to the concept, started from the bottom (casual) now here (business owner), because of her persistence and determination to win.

These are just some of the characteristics she inherited from her late mother, a person from who she draws tremendous inspiration.

Her company assists companies to build their brand, increase market share and profits, increase clientèle and thus grow from strength to strength with brand and marketing support she offers.

As a teenager, Philander lost her mother before completing her studies and had to step in to help her father and younger siblings, therefore, in order to earn money and contribute to the household she did casual work.

“I made a good impression on someone who saw great potential in me and that is how I got my first permanent job. I then quickly moved into the position of personal assistant, a position I held for 11 years,” she explained.

She learned early in her career that she loved connecting with people from various backgrounds, being of service and being part of projects that is about positive change which naturally made her a good fit for a career marketing where she worked her way up to Marketing Manager.

“After almost 15 years in the corporate world, I decided it was time to take on new challenges,” she added.

With the support from her husband and children, Philander finally took the leap and started her business in October 2019, with only herself as an employee.

“This is when Uphil was born, with the slogan ‘Together we rise’, where I emphasised to my clients that brand exposure and awareness is important in order for their companies to stay relevant and rise,” she highlighted.

Uphil’s branding and marketing support services include services such as poster printing, t-shirt- and vehicle branding, signage, advertising on platforms such as social media and email, selling outdoor and indoor marketing sales promotional items like gazebo’s, flags banners and corporate gifts.

“In essence, I offer a one stop brand and marketing advice and service centre where I work closely with clients on their strategic branding and marketing plans, then assist in the execution of the plans through advertising and branding materials,” she emphasised.

According to Philander to start your business and grow with minimal financial risk to gain momentum is a challenge, but she makes it work by being disciplined enough to remain responsible and focused. “The tough decisions you have to make every day and be 100% responsible and accountable for each of them is a major challenge,” she informed.

She advised businesswomen to believe in themselves, to have faith that they will make it, and not to be afraid to take that step in starting their own businesses. “Do it because you have the passion for it, not for the money, networking is important so build a great network to surround yourself with, equip yourself with the basic knowledge to understand business and finance management so that you can grow your business financially,” said Philander.

For the future Philander wants to grow her business to be financially stable and create employment in order to invest in other Namibians. “Ultimately, the aim is to have a positive and tangible impact on other companies through branding and marketing, and subsequently, in a small way, contribute to the development of Namibia as a whole,” she concluded.


About The Author

Mandisa Rasmeni

Mandisa Rasmeni has worked as reporter at the Economist for the past five years, first on the entertainment beat but now focussing more on community, social and health reporting. She is a born writer and she believes education is the greatest equalizer. She received her degree in Journalism at the Namibia University of Science and Technology (NUST) in June 2021. . She is the epitome of perseverance, having started as the newspaper's receptionist in 2013.