How we bolstered Absa’s presence in China to support a subsequent regional launch.  

Breaking into a new region is a major moment for any business. 
We had a critical role to play in helping Absa make the most of the opportunity, first through research and insights, building a clear narrative and then securing quality coverage. 



Brand, Insights & StrategyPR & Comms


Financial Services

Our Approach

With the opening of a first China office slated for late 2019, Absa sought our help to lay the groundwork for local brand awareness. As a pan-African bank, Absa’s brand is centered on Africa, so we all recognized the need to create a narrative that stayed true to the brand essence, while resonating with a new audience. Then we needed to create a media buzz ahead of any concrete launch – to give the business the best possible starting conditions. 

Pan-African bank, Absa, was looking to raise their profile in China, as they wanted to launch their China office at the end of the year. This work began in 2019, when our initial activity was focused on supporting the Absa-SocGen MoU announcement. More recent activity has been focused on Absa’s attendance at FOCAC.

We brought in our Brand, Insights and Strategy team to complete a competitor review and messaging exercise. We secure top-tier coverage with a story on the increase of Chinese private investment in Africa’s growth and used the announcement of an MoU with SocGen to secure top-tier interviews, then built on that with a strong presence at the Forum on China-Africa Cooperation

Results we’re proud of


Pieces of multi-media top-tier coverage including Reuters and Financial Times.


Broadcast interviews with CNBC Squawk Box and PBS’s Great Decisions​.

All in the details

Underpinned by evidence

Positioning that is based on research and careful understanding of the market.

Carefully crafted

Messaging that holds on to Absa’s brand essence, but adapted for a Chinese audience.


By the time of the official office opening, there was already a local buzz about Absa’s arrival.

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