From BOCCIM to Business Botswana

SHARE   |   Sunday, 24 May 2015   |   By Kabelo Adamson
Machailo-Ellis Machailo-Ellis PIC: RICARDO KANONO

Botswana Confederation of Commerce Industry and Manpower (BOCCIM) has changed its name to Business Botswana following an approval by the Special General Meeting on Wednesday. The business conglomerate has also approved and adopted a new constitution.
A new logo to go with the changes will be done through a national competition. BOCCIM CEO, Maria Machailo-Ellis, said there was a need to rebrand in order to align the new brand with the current restructuring process of creating an organisation with an apex body.
Explaining what led to changes, Machailo-Ellis said BOCCIM’s mandate was not broad enough and appeared to focus only on advocacy and also there were fears that companies might be paying membership fees twice to their sector association and BOCCIM.
There were also concerns that the organisation had limited influence on government decisions and was catering for large companies while smaller ones were overlooked. The general membership is also said to have raised concerns that the organisation was mostly focused on lobbying and offering less services, hence the decision to transform the organisation into an apex body.
Machailo-Ellis said it was about time a new logo was launched as the current one was designed in 1970’s when the organisation was formed as an employers’ federation. She said there is a need to modernise the name and logo so that it speaks to today’s business clientele and also create a long term brand identity that clearly communicates the value of the organisation with a continued transition of the apex model.
BOCCIM president, Lekwalo Mosienyane noted that transforming of the organisation into an apex body does not necessarily mean it will shed off its previous roles but it is an effort to further broaden the mandate so that it represents the entire private sector and offer better services to its members. This, he said, will be done at the same time while ensuring that there is better coordination of the advocacy and lobbying requirements of business in Botswana.
According to Mosienyane, transforming BOCCIM into an apex body is the first step in implementing the Private Sector Development Strategy (PSDS).
The PSDS, a product of joint efforts between the private sector and public sector, it is said was designed to provide a systematic and coherent framework to promote the development and growth of the private sector.
The strategy identifies proposals to spur entrepreneurial development, attract foreign and domestic investment and create business opportunities locally and at regional level. Mosienyane explained that PSDS is anchored on three major interventions of creating and enabling business climate; generating business opportunities and catalysing private investment through Foreign Direct Investment (FDI), credit enhancement and risk management instruments.

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