Trades Minister, Alan Kyerematen, has urged GRATIS Foundation to rebrand its activities in order to tailor its services to small scale enterprises in the country.
Speaking to the newly constituted members of the board, he advised them to adopt new policies to make SMEs viable. Mr Kyerematen revealed that the foundation will require three things, which are to “restructure, rebrand and resource” in a bid help the foundation achieve its objectives.
Mr Kyerematen referenced the rebranding of the National Board for Small Scale Industries which has morphed and received a facelift as the Ghana Enterprises Agency. This, he noted, has moved the Agency “forward”, as they have a “new brand” which is creating “magical waves for them”.
“The fact that you have an organization called GRATIS foundation in itself can be very deceptive to the constituencies that you serve. Because it is very easy for people to think that you are there to offer free services. Whiles you are a government institution, it is important that you also operate on sound, commercial lines to ensure sustainability. So, as a new board, one of the responsibilities I want to bestow on you is to start thinking about how we rebrand our institution. So, I hope that your maiden meeting, you start thinking about this rebranding exercise”.Mr Alan Kyerematen
Touching on rebranding, the trades minister disclosed that the foundation cannot fully rebrand without having real “substance” to work with because it will be “actually of no value” when proper structures aren’t in place.
“That is why… I talked about restructuring. Restructuring requires that we develop new institutional or organizational structures that will help you deliver a more varied portfolio of services. Not just that, and also to ensure that you become more service oriented”.Mr Alan Kyerematen
GRATIS pledges to turn the foundation around
On his part, the Chairman of the GRATIS board, Dr Richard Amoako Baah, lauded the trades minister’s requirement of the board and vowed to carry out the strategies suggested by him.
Mr Baah explained that the foundation currently knows what they “are up against” and as such, they are fully capable of “turning GRATIS around”.
“Believe it or not, the people at GRATIS… are already working. The rebranding, they’ve started working on that already. So, next week we will come up with a new name and let you see it. The rebranding is not difficult [and] we need money to advertise and let people know what we are doing now”.Dr Richard Amoako Baah
The GRATIS Board Chair also urged the Trades Ministry to support the foundation in its quest to rebrand its operations.
“I know that our work is now very big. But since we know the terrain a bit it won’t be as difficult as it was before. The board, this term, is going to raise GRATIS to stand up strong. We’ve been in the water too long till now…”Dr Richard Amoako Baah
GRATIS Foundation is an Agency under Ministry of Trade and Industry. The guidance policy direction which enables GRATIS to fulfil its mission is provided by Board of Directors appointed by the Minister of Trade and Industry.