Unpacking “Inspiring excellence in sports and creative industry” at the 2018 Nation Brand Forum


Brand South Africa successfully hosted the third Nation Brand Forum at the IDC in Sandton on Thursday 11th October 2018, under the theme: Inspiring excellence in sports and creative industry.

Industry experts in their respective fields of arts, film, dance, music and fashion honoured their invitation and attended to engage, collaborate and find a cohesive approach to enhance the nation brand image.

In her opening address, Brand South Africa’s Board Trustee, Ms Mudithambi Ravele, applauded the country’s strong brand image enablers for their hard work domestically and internationally.

She emphasized the importance of an aligned vision, “to ensure the success of our country and for the betterment of all”.

Deputy Minister of Communications, Ms Pinky Kekana delivered a message of encouragement saying that; “every country has to nurture its strengths. Similarly, South Africa is rated highly in the sports fraternity as well as in music, arts and storytelling. It’s been proven that strong brands are strongly associated with excellence in the delivery of its selling proposition”.

Sylvester Chauke, Founder of DNA Brand Architects and one behind many successful brands, left the audience in awe, when he unpacked the Nation Brand reputation and image through case studies. One of these included  the moving video of recording breaking middle-distance runner Caster Semenya #JustDoIt

The Nation Brand Forum took a different approach this year and kicked off with a panel discussion focusing on how to leverage South Africa’s strengths to compete and advance South Africa’s reputation.  Sports Commentator Thabiso Tema, moderated a panel that included; FNB Head of Sponsorship, Bonga Sebesho, Choreographer and award winning dancer Paul Modjadji, Musician Sibongile Khumalo, Fashion Designer, David Tlale, Film Producer, Harriet Gavshon.

Taking to social media to share highlights from the discussion under the #NationBrandForum18. The audience shared;

@the_sithe Oct 11 @DAVIDTLALE , says the Tlale brand had to 1) decide what it stand for, 2) what narrative to tell and 3)how do it stand out. South Africa has to have institutions that impart skills , wisdom of how to better compete as South African brands on a global front #NationBrandForum18

@nnusi Oct 11Hope is not a strategy – @ThabisoTema #NationBrandForum18

@nthabelengphora Oct 11#NationBrandForum18 it’s necessary for all forms of art to be aggressively marketed. Highlighted the importance of partnership and local collaborations to grow each other’s industries. Maintain good quality products and service to be globally competitive.

@SMbatha_Senzo Oct 11“Meaningful Collaborations assist in taking our different brands into bigger audiences “ #PaulModjadji #NationBrandForum18

Following which, the guests were afford one-on-one breakaway sessions under the tags and facilitators;

Breakaway 1: Music – Facilitated by Zwai Bala

‏ @LeboLion_SA Oct 11 “What we do tends to be treated like a hobby and not a profession” – Mam’Sibongile Khumalo talking about how South African society tend to view creative professions. #NationBrandForum18











Breakaway 2: Sports – Facilitated by Kass Naidoo and KC Mathoma

@Brand_SA Oct 11  In the Sport breakaway room, moderators @kassnaidoo and @kcmathoma have posed the challenge to delegates to, by the end of the session, come up with six insights on how we can use the Nation Brand to enhance sports. #NationBrandForum18











Breakaway 3: Arts, fashion & Heritage – Rosie Motene

@Nto_B Oct 11 ‘Think global act local’ words from discussion happening in the breakaway session (Arts, heritage and fashion) led by @RosieMotene #NationBrandForum18 @Brand_SA
















Breakaway 4: Film & Broadcast – Facilitated by Eric Miyeni











‏ @matalane Oct 11 SA has a unique story to tell the world. Through our thriving & innovative film industry the SA narrative can educate the world about SA. #NationBrandForum18 @Brand_SA @EricMiyeni

Feedback by these facilitators gave way to the understanding that despite the work under way, it is important to remember that the work never ends. The country’s image is the responsibility of all its citizens.

As, radio personality, Ashraf Garda took to the mic, to reiterate that “Champion People Build Champion Nations. We need to link our personal successes to our country.”

Brand South Africa’s Acting Chief Executive Officer, Ms Thembi Kunene – Msimang, gave a vote of thanks, she commended the team and said that continuous dialogues need to be had to represent ourselves as a strengthened Nation Brand.

“Ladies and gentleman thank you so much on behalf of Brand South Africa, today was profound. We are competing with a lot of countries, but the best that we can do is really be who we are, naturally out there and representing our true selves to the world” said Ms Kunene – Msimang.

Follow the conversation #NationBrandForum18