GlobalFluency, Inc., an international multi-channel marketing and perception management firm, today announced a partnership with africapractice, to provide strategic communications, corporate citizenship and public affairs capabilities across a fast growing, rapidly evolving regional market with over one billion consumers, 53 countries and a GDP of $2.2 trillion.
The agreement enables the GlobalFluency network – with 70 offices in 40 countries – to greatly expand its client service offerings and capabilities in more than 15 African countries. These include South Africa, Kenya, Nigeria, Ghana, Tanzania, Angola, Botswana, Egypt, Ethiopia, Mozambique, Namibia, Senegal, Uganda, Gabon and Zambia. The linkage with africapractice will be focused on sub Saharan Africa where the London-based firm has wholly owned offices in Johannesburg, Nairobi, Lagos, Accra, and Dar es Salaam. It maintains affiliate offices in other markets. Clients of africapractice include Diageo, Google, CNN, Turner, Coca-Cola, and the African Union.
“Geo expansion in sub-Saharan Africa is a priority for both domestic and multi-national brands,” notes Donovan Neale-May, president of GlobalFluency, which is based in Silicon Valley, California. “We’re seeing many new contenders and aggressive brand leaders from China, India, Korea, Japan, Taiwan, South Africa and the UAE moving into markets across Africa. In particular, there’s a big push by multinational concerns in banking, retailing, information technology, communications, consumer electronics, infrastructure development, industrial equipment, transportation, media, entertainment, food and beverage, quick serve restaurant, and consumer packaged goods sectors to access Africa’s growing, natural resource-rich economies,” he adds.
Described as the world's largest untapped market by Professor Vijay Mahajan in his insightful book, Africa Rising, the continent is rapidly moving from its common perception as a global charity case to one of solid market opportunity with sustainable growth potential. With more than 450 million mobile phone subscribers and half its population under the age of 15, Africa has become the world leader and innovator in mobile banking and money transfers. Later this month the global spotlight will be on Africa and the 2010 FIFA World Cup, when the attention and interest of billions of football fans will be on the host nation South Africa.
GlobalFluency, which operates the Chief Marketing Officer (CMO) Council and the Business Performance Innovation (BPI) Network worldwide, represents South African-based clients like Clickatell, 21 Icons Global Project, and Mobilewave. It also has a partnership with AfricaGoodNews.com and BizCommunity.com, two leading Internet content providers and eNewsletter publishers in the region. GlobalFluency is also readying a campaign with Microsoft and other sponsors to promote African ingenuity and entrepreneurship in a challenged and changing continent. Dubbed Inspirations Overcoming Limitations, the Internet and mobile telephony driven program will embrace governments, NGOs, higher education institutions, banks, wireless operators, media companies, as well as IT solution and service providers.
Africapractice will add a range of new services and competencies to the GlobalFluency portfolio and presence in Africa. These include stakeholder relations/engagement; public affairs & issues management; business intelligence & research; corporate communications; media relations; environmental & sustainability communications and investor relations.
“Understanding the socio-economic diversity and the African context and culture is critical to success in this multi-dimensional market,” notes Kim Polley, Director Southern Africa for africapractice. “Each country has its own set of dynamics and differences and strong tribal and ethnic variations make localization a critical consideration in market communications. We are excited about the global reach offered by this partnership, as African companies seek opportunities abroad and foreign firms look for greater presence, influence, access and market share across our region,” Polley adds.
In terms of outlook, The McKinsey Quarterly notes that Africa’s 50-plus economies are growing at a remarkable pace; across the region, real GDP increased by an average of 4.9 percent a year between 2000 and 2008. It also noted that foreign direct investment (FDI) increased to $62 billion from $9 billion in 2000.
Headquartered in Silicon Valley and New York, GlobalFluency, Inc. (globalfluency.com) integrates global resources under one brand to deliver seamless cross-border programs that drive customer interaction, market advocacy and media prominence. The company is a leader and innovator in web-driven Intelligent Market Engagement™ and has over 70 offices in 40 countries. GlobalFluency also operates influential membership groups that enable peer-to-peer networking and knowledge exchange among thousands of key decision makers and influencers. These include the Chief Marketing Officer (CMO) Council, Business Performance Innovation (BPI) Network, Coalition to Leverage and Optimize Sales Effectiveness (CLOSE), Marketing Supply Chain Institute, GeoBranding Center, Digital Marketing Performance Institute, Forum to Advance the Mobile Experience (FAME), Global Renewable Energy and Environmental Network (GREEN), Competitive Strategy Roundtable, Software Economics Council, and DecisionROI Institute.
Matt Farrell, GlobalFluency, Inc.
P: 212-213-5400 x5404 / E: mfarrell[.]globalfluency.com.
Kim Polley, africapractice
T: +27(0)11 022 6563 / M: +27(0)82 768 9727