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CHAN 2020: “Promoting the image and the economy of host country"

Bruno Bekono Mvong is the President of the African Nations Championship (CHAN) Marketing Commission. In this interview, he outlines the importance given to the "Made in Cameroon" label during this tournament and its added value.

Since the begining of the 6th edition of the African Nations Championship (CHAN), we have noted an exceptional deployment of the "Made in Cameroon" products on the various sites of the competition. What justifies such an initiative?

The promotion of "Made in Cameroon" products within the framework of CHAN is first of all a general principle. Events of this nature give an opportunity to upgrade both the image and the economy of the country hosting the games.

CHAN for us is a trial run. We want to let both promoters and project carriers of this nature (Made in Cameroon) be aware of the fact that they can give themselves visibility; not simply by displaying but also by being the bearer of quality products manufactured in Cameroon and by promoting them during international sports competitions.

For this edition of the tournament, we said to ourselves: “people who come to watch the games might be hungry. So, they cannot stay 4 hours or more in an enclosure with an empty stomach. At a certain point, they would need to eat”. Reason why we’ve started manufacturing products like sugar jam or candy as an appetite suppressant.

The Investment Promotion Agency (API), which accompanies us as a national sponsor, welcomed the idea and allowed us to set up a campaign to promote these products. We made a selection. This is what is being distributed in towns and at competition venues. This initiative will both enhance our expertise and allow project carriers go further so as to meet the international standards.

What were the selection criteria for these products?

We launched a call for proposal. We also selected project initiators, those in charge of mass distribution who were already referenced and could meet the required conditions.

To be honest, our aim is not about making profit. We mobilized teams to work in the project. They must be taken care of. As long as people support them, we agree to do so.

Another important condition is that, these products cannot come with brands since there are marketing rights associated with the competition. And if you want to display your brand on a product, you have to acquire these rights. To avoid these pitfalls, we asked that the packaging be associated with one of the national supporters who has acquired rights and can therefore do merchandising. It is in this context that some producers have been selected and are under the banner of the investment promotion agency.

What is your assessment of this operation so far? Is the feedback positive?

Those who have had the opportunity to buy and consume these products do appreciate them. Consumers are also surprised because they could not imagine a “macabo” being transformed into chips which is a long-lasting product. This is real promotion. ​​Cameroonians should know that their country is eminently rich. They have been blessed by nature. Now, it is up to them to work hard to earn the required Marketing standards.

Conducted by Solière Champlain Paka

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