East Africa: Equity Rebrands Outlets Across Region

Equity Bank is rebranding its regional subsidiaries to reflect a "global" brand and a much changed operating environment after the group's 35 years of existence.

The new look, which was rolled out in Kenya, has been set up in South Sudan, Uganda, and Tanzania.

Last week, Rwandan branches were rebranded with the process expected to be concluded in the Democratic Republic of Congo, according to a statement from the Bank.

"The evolution of our brand is an important part of our strategy for continued market leadership as well as being integral to the promise we made to all of our stakeholders when we began our journey of transformation to modernise and do all we can to get closer to and better serve our customers," said James Mwangi, the group's chief executive.

"Our brand has carried us through a disruptive and trailblazing 35-year period. During this period, we have evolved from a small building society to a leading bank in East and Central Africa. We have become a leading digital bank, while our social impact investments hold promise to our young people as our future servant leaders."

The rebranding is expected to present the bank as one basket of products and services.

"Additionally the market demographics are embracing the youth-targeted products and services and becoming more mobile and digital. As a result, customers are increasingly showing preference for self-service banking, making banking something you do and not somewhere you go," Mr Mwangi said.

Brand Finance, a global brand valuation and strategy consultancy firm noted that while the purpose of a strong brand is to attract customers, build loyalty and motivate staff, the ultimate goal is "to make money" and increase earnings for the shareholders.

"Huge investments are made in the design, launch, and ongoing promotion of brands. Given their potential financial value, this makes sense," the firm said.

Research by Brand Finance shows a compelling link between strong brands and stock market performance.

In Africa, only Egyptian, Nigerian and Moroccan banks made it to the list of the top 500 global valuable and strongest banking brands.

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