Branding for resilience and economic recovery

The 16th Brand Global Summit on October 1 2020, co-organised by UNIDO and the European Brand Institute (EBI), explored how brands promote sustainability and enable resilience, particularly in times of COVID-19 and accelerated digitalization. “The pandemic has opened a window of opportunity for new approaches, including branding,” noted UNIDO Director General LI Yong, highlighting the innovative character of branding at the event, which took place in an online- and offline format gathering hundreds of participants from government, business, academia and international organizations. Margarete Schramböck, Federal Minister of Digitalization and Economic Affairs of Austria emphasised that “Branding and digital solutions are vaccines for the economy.”

“Brands for sustainability”, is the key promise of branding, considering brands deliver superior returns on investment in difficult economic times and help a faster economic recovery. Gerhard Hrebicek, President of EBI, pointed out that “companies which apply IP rights perform much better, but we only see that 9% of SMEs in Europe use this system.”  UNIDO’s Branding for Competitiveness (B4C) module should improve on that, as showcased by success stories from projects in carpet-weaving and embroidery sectors in Tajikistan, upgrading export-oriented textile industries in Armenia, through promoting sustainable bush processing value chains in Namibia, and improving agrochemical production in Cuba. These initiatives have shown tremendous resilience during this pandemic and will enable a much quicker post-COVID-19 recovery.

UNIDO’s brand portfolio is versatile and keeps expanding, and so should the reach and awareness for branding as a development tool. UNIDO and EBI plan to further expand this event globally through roadshows, thereby continuing to guide beneficiaries on innovative and sustainable pathways. Using a virtuous cycle of innovation, digitalization and branding can lift companies, clusters and whole regions to new heights and ensure inclusive and sustainable industrial development.

Watch the recording of the Brand Global Summit here.

Read the press release here.

Access here more information on the Brand Global Summit 2020.

More information on the joint UNIDO-EBI initiative is available here.

For further information contact Farrukh Alimdjanov (F.Alimdjanov [at] unido.org)