Ricky Zililo, Senior Sports Reporter
SIX Castle Lager Premier Soccer League teams are pushing for brand visibility by exhibiting at the Zimbabwe International Trade Fair, which started in Bulawayo on Tuesday.
Highlanders are back at the exhibition centre alongside league leaders Ngezi Platinum Stars, champions FC Platinum, Harare City, Bulawayo City and new boys Herentals. They are marketing their brands at the PSL stand in Hall 4.
“This year we’re exhibiting with the clubs. We have six clubs here with us. ZITF is always good as we get to interact with the fans as well as meet other business partners and sponsors.
“It is good as the fans get to appreciate the total package of football and also get to hear from their clubs on a one-on-one basis not just at the stadium,” said Kudzai Bare, PSL spokesperson.
Besides engaging fans, the PSL wants to interact with the corporate world and create new business partners.
FC Platinum spokesperson Chido Chizondo, whose club is exhibiting for the first time, said: “This is an opportunity for FC Platinum and Zimbabwean clubs to exhibit what they are and what the PSL is to them.
“We are also using it as a platform to showcase the merchandise we have. I think a lot of people have a lot of misconceptions about Zimbabwean clubs and what they have to offer out there. This is a great opportunity for people to see us outside the field of play.”
Harare City FC chief executive officer Tafadzwa Basera said they were exhibiting to sell their brand and create partnerships with other teams and sponsors.
“As you know our fans base is a bit low and by exhibiting, I think we can up the fan base. Our major sponsor Harare City Council is here. As the President (Mnangagwa) said, Zimbabwe is open for business. We are hoping investors coming through, apart from sponsoring us, will also sponsor the PSL as a whole,” said Basera.
Ngezi are represented by Calvin Mavhunga, who said: “We’re a new brand, but we’re setting the record straight that we want to be a brand that is recognised for professionalism. We want to be a brand that becomes a force to reckon with and we are taking branding and marketing seriously.
“Our vision is very simple; from a branding perspective, we want to be spot on in what we do, which is the mark of a champion. We want to lead the pack; we don’t want to be behind. So everything we do we ensure that it’s on point.
“We want to grow our brand to be able to reach out to different fans and potential partners. We’re on top of the log so we want people to know that we are here. So it’s a matter of amplifying our visibility and ensuring that we take Zimbabwe football somewhere. We’re here in Bulawayo, we don’t have membership, but we want to create a database so that we have fans from Bulawayo.”