When a nation is establishing a new identity and making recompense for exclusively regulated economy of recent history, the corporate marketing function must respond. A new paradigm is required if the communities that comprise future markets are to favour businesses whose success is based on the economic exclusivity of the past. As the economy deregulate – inclusive of the previously disadvantaged communities that become economically active, acquire motor vehicles and face the decision as to which petroleum products to buy: the established petroleum retailers have to pay attention to their brand management. This paper examines perceptions of branding in the South Africa petroleum retail industry based on the views of senior representatives of the retailers, regulators and industry associations. It finds that the contribution of South African petroleum retailers to black economic empowerment are variable, and that a new paradigm is needed to assure future patronage by newly empowered consumers.
Key words: Brand management, petroleum marketing, black economic empowerment and petroleum industry.
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