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Lindsay Beltzer
Senior Associate,
Global Marketing & Communications
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Africa's first Brand Investment Index launched: Who's hot, who's not, and why not

Johannesburg, South Africa, May 4, 2010- Africa investor (Ai) and Interbrand-Sampson’s first African Brand Investment Index provides invaluable evidence about how countries are perceived as investment destinations by the global investment community. The first of its kind, the research outlines what investors think about Africa, and what Africa’s countries should be aware of when jostling for investment.

“African governments and business leaders alike need to realize the way in which they are promoting their countries is absolutely crucial for attracting and retaining both domestic and foreign investment, and the Brand Investment Survey and Index aims to highlight just this,” said Hubert Danso, vice chairman and managing director at Africa investor.

In view of the forthcoming World Economic Forum (WEF), this groundbreaking research highlights political stability, economic growth prospects and currency stability as the top three perception investment attributes.

According to the poll, Africa was considered the third most attractive investment destination after Southeast Asia and India. Unsurprisingly, South Africa emerged as the preferred investment destination, and Somalia was ranked to have the worst investment brand on the continent. With 60% of those surveyed saying they rely on professional advisors as sources of information when exploring investment opportunities, many also felt that African governments are not doing enough to promote the region as an investment destination.

The issues highlighted around Africa’s investment brand have much to do with political stability and regulatory practice. The Index also revealed that the majority of respondents feel that Africa will improve its investment brand profile over the next 12 months. “Africa has a great opportunity to harness the goodwill from the investment community to position brand Africa as a globally competitive investment destination. The continent has made great strides implementing a raft of regulatory reforms to ensure it is business friendly and it’s up to governments to commission adequate resources to communicate effective in today’s competitive and complex global investment information environment,” says Danso.

“We wanted to first to understand the strength of the African investment brand in a competitive context, to establish the images associated with that brand, and to find out the positive or negative brand images attached to particular African countries,” adds Doug de Villiers, CEO of Interbrand-Sampson, which ran the survey in partnership with Africa investor.

ENDS

About Interbrand Sampson
Based in Johannesburg, with offices in Cape Town, Lagos and Nairobi, we act as a hub for Africa. Increasingly, brands are becoming regional and global. Interbrand serves the world with over 38 offices in more than 20 countries. Working in close partnership with our clients we combine the rigorous strategy and analysis of brand consulting with world-class design and creativity. This reach enables us to conduct global research, investigate emerging trends, introduce brands across markets, and better service our clients where they want to do business. Interbrand Sampson has won FinWeek’s AdReview ‘Best Branding and Design Agency’ in 2009 and 2010. Interbrand is a wholly-owned subsidiary of the Omnicom Group, the global leader in marketing and corporate communications.

About Africa investor
Africa investor is a specialist investment communications firm advising governments, international organizations and businesses on communication strategies for capital market and foreign direct investments in Africa. Africa investor publishes Africa investor, the leading international newsstand magazine for Africa’s investment decision makers; maintains the Africa investor 40 Investors’ Index, hosts the Ai Index Series Summit & Awards and the Africa investor Infrastructure Projects Summit & Awards, amongst other events.

Media Contacts
Interbrand Sampson
Jeremy Sampson
Group Executive Chairman
T: +27 11 783 9595
Jeremy@ibsa.co.za


Africa investor
Shanna Jacobsen
Editor
T: (011) 783 2431
sjacobsen@africa-investor.com