Golden Sibanda and Blessing Chidhakwa
Zimbabwe's biggest retail promotion, the OK Grand Challenge Jackpot Promotion, returns this year after a year-long hiatus following the outbreak of the deadly coronavirus pandemic last year.
The promotion comes back bigger with better customer experience and rewards, says chief executive Mr Maxen Karombo.
The challenge is this time typified by the new tag-line, "More Winners, Great Savings and More Smiles", which replaces "Shop at OK Where Everyone is a Winner".
Speaking during the launch of the promotion in Harare yesterday, Mr Karombo who took over as new group CEO after replacing Alex Siyavora in March this year, said the 32nd edition of the promotion returns after being stopped for only the second time last year.
The other time the promotion did not run was in 2009 when the country was engulfed by an economic crisis, which emptied every supermarket's shelves. This year, the annual promotion will run from April 15 to June 4, 2021.
"In spite of the pandemic, the year 2020 was a significant one for the group, as we embarked on a refreshment of all our brands. The refreshment is premised on reaffirming our effort to deliver a meaningful and compelling customer service," he said.
Mr Karombo said the familiar tagline "Shop at OK Where Everyone is Winner" this year makes way for "More Winners, Great Savings, More Smiles", which goes in line with fulfilling OK's promise to reward its customers and give them exceptional experience.
For this year's Grand Challenge Promotion, participating customers who purchase $1 000 worth of products at any OK Zimbabwe outlet across the country, stand to win the grand prize of one Toyota 4×4 double cab vehicle.
According to the country's biggest retail chain, this year's OK Grand Challenge Promotion will have a total of 33 supplier sponsored cash prizes valued at $1,5 million. Any of its lucky customers will stand to win between April and June, 2021.
Zonal customers from each of the seven zones country wide could walk away with $850 000 in cash. There will be weekly prizes where there will be five lucky winners in each and every OK Zimbabwe store across the country.
On the day of the OK Grand Challenge horse race, Zimbabwe's richest and most popular horse race, one of the participating customers stands a chance to walk away with US$70 000.
OK commercial Mr Albert Katsande in an interview said measures have been put in place to safely conduct the event amid Covid-19 threats.
"We actually have gone virtual, digital - last year we did not run the promotion because we actually were not ready to respond to the Covid-19 implications of no crowding.
"The execution was affected and we have now perfected the promotion that we can run an effective one during the Covid-19 period, making sure we are doing it in line with all the World Health Organisation and Government protocols and at the same time keeping it as exciting as ever," he said.
He said customers registration was not going to be conducted physically through coupons, but digitally through applications on phones.
Mr Katsande said the customers were simply supposed to check in store as the promotion unfolded how many points and coupons they were accumulating.
"Above all, one will not just be winning the car at the end, but also winning every day in goods prizes and in cash prizes during the promotion at every store.
"I think the most exciting issue is that this vehicle which people normally used to win at the race course by being there you can now win it from the comfort of your lounge or your house, you could be even herding your cattle as long as you have your phone.
"They will phone you to say you are a winner, answer a few questions and then you are the winner. So this is all being done digitally, the draw is digital it's an exciting moment we have reached," he said.
"You actually can expect a lot more excitement in store as our supplier customers are also coming up with their promotions within a promotion.
"The suppliers have been working on innovation of their brands so we have put together a beautiful package of products," he said.
Mr Katsande said product availability was also going to be one of the major exciting developments and efforts were being made to ensure that all the stores were well stocked with affordable goods.