A decades-long company today announced its management buyout and rebrand, which sees it returning to its African roots. The Africa arm of international events organisation Clarion Events rebranded to Vuka Group, representing a shift to a more future aligned approach to their market offering.
The organisation’s new name, which means awaken and rise, will focus their strategic direction and decision making to include a more African-centric vision of bringing people and organisations together to connect with information and each other, across curated digital and in-person environments.
David Ashdown, Vuka Group CEO, explained the past 18 months have been extremely challenging for the events industry as a whole. “Not being able to run any live events for 19 months has necessitated a rapid and exciting evolution of our business.”
According to Ashdown, the vision and brand style of Vuka Group is a step away from the traditional bricks and mortar world of exhibitions and talks more to a modern agency approach. “The COVID-19 pandemic has been a disruptor to our industry and re-modelling our business now will allow us to thrive in the future.”
The Group CEO added: “We are in the business of connections and experiences, and the evolution of our portfolios has allowed us to now offer a far greater range of touchpoints to industry. These include in-person meeting places such as exhibitions, conferences and summits, alongside digital events, news media, resource media, webinars, social media and research materials.
“We can support our customers with channels to market across multiple mediums which allows for effective, integrated campaign management. We are providing greater value to the industries we serve, driven by data and proven by analytics. This is a big shift for us as an organisation and we feel the rebrand is necessary to support the reset in our approach and the mindset of our project teams and customers,” explained Ashdown.
Localisation and commitment to data analysis for greater reach throughout Africa
Having established a strong presence on the African continent over the past 20 years, Clarion Events Africa is an industry leader in the energy and mining sectors, which will continue to grow under the Vuka Group.
“We are very excited about being able to bring back our scaled in-person projects next year; Enlit Africa at the Cape Town International Convention Centre in June, as well as DRC Mining Week in Lubumbashi, DRC, and believe that these events will thrive under our new approach.
“The industry wants to meet face-to-face again and our subtle shift in direction and expansion of touchpoints will provide increased value to the industry sectors we serve,” said Ashdown.
The rebrand follows the local management buyout of Clarion Events Africa from Clarion Events. Vuka Group will continue working collaboratively with Clarion Events on the African continent, supporting them, and with no changes to their staff or operations. With a commitment to data at its core Vuka Group is well-positioned to support industry stakeholders now and into the future.
Clarion Group Managing Director Lisa Hannat said the global group is very supportive of the local management buyout, which will focus the business through a more Africa-centric lens, rather than a broader global lens. “We believe the future success of the business and its customers, will be best driven locally, with local ownership, and are delighted to support the team as they embark on this new era,” said Hannat.