Vodafone, Airtel clash over brand colours

Vodafone Ghana has expressed concern about the white-on-red brand colours of Airtel Ghana, but the latter insists on maintaining their brand colours even though it conflicts with that of Vodafone.

Chief Executive Officer of Vodafone Ghana, Kyle Whitehill said Vodafone was concerned about the confusion Airtel’s brand colours are creating for both Vodafone and Airtel.

“We are not concerned about the fact that Airtel is in Ghana, but we have issues with why they chose to use white-on-red background just like Vodafone, when in other countries they use red-on-white,” he said.

Mr. Whitehill was speaking with journalists who had gone on a tour of Vodafone’s new nine-storey headquarters building within the Airport City.

He said Airtel’s colours confuse both Vodafone and Airtel subscribers when they are buying recharge cards and that is something that Airtel should also be concerned about.

“We hope they will reconsider their brand colours in Ghana,” he said.

The Airtel Group recently showcased a new brand image with red-on-white, but when they rebranded Zain to Airtel in Ghana, they surprised many Ghanaians by choosing to go red background with white inscriptions just like Vodafone.

Some Ghanaians have expressed their difficulty in differentiating Vodafone vehicles and outdoor brandings from those of Airtel, and some even confuse Vodafone recharge cards for Airtel’s

But in response to a questionnaire from Adom Business News, Airtel noted that “colors are just one ingredient of the brand – our visuals are unique and different, and we are constantly introducing unique and enticing propositions for our customers in Ghana and across Africa.”

Airtel insisted red and white are their brand colours, in use globally, adding that the use of white-on-red is their logo application across all their markets in Africa.

They said they did not believe their brand colours confused their customers and vendors because “All brands have a unique stamp in terms of the look, feel and iconography.”

The company said the main drivers of any brand are the products and services that they offer, adding that Airtel, as a brand, would differentiate itself on the basis of its product offering and customer service, underpinned by its relationships with world class partners, vendors and business associates.

“What better way to showcase the difference between the Airtel brand and others than by liberating the consumer with innovative, yet simple, affordable and relevant offerings,” Airtel asked.

They noted that customers in Ghana had responded positively to the Airtel brand and its offerings, so they believe in the brand, its colour combination in Ghana and uniqueness in terms of “our simple and flat tariffs, our exciting speed of connecting to the world on our state of the art 3G network, or the “Freedom to Dream” promotion, that offers every customer a chance to win prizes every week.”

By Samuel Dowuona

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