Brand & Comm’s Strategy.

Skills Initiative for Africa

African Union -AUDA-NEPAD

African Union GIZ and NEPAD 

Skills Initiative for Africa 


SIFA is a pan African initiative geared towards harnessing Africa’s youth population, in a public private partnership to upskill the continents future workforce. 

Our team were tasked with developing a brand and communication strategy for SIFA, the Skills Initiative for Africa – earmarked by the African Union to boost employment amongst its youth population in the run up to 2063.

Our continent has the world’s youngest population.

Africa has 55 states.

The only thing these states have in common is that they belong to one continent. 

By 2050, around 2.2 billion people will be added to the global population. More than 1/2 of that growth will occur in Africa.

With Africa’s fast growing population and youth bulge, we need to be cognizant of a continent that will account for more than 1/2 of the worlds population growth by 2050.

SIFA sought to galvanise a skills initiative across her land but first needed to understand her people.

Understanding Africa.


The status quo.


Our team conducted multi-stakeholder consultation; internal workshops; psychographic research and assessment criteria for projects supported.

Research was a tool to understand the operating environment to better align purpose, vision and strategy of operation.

And to identify how to position the brand and communicate its purpose. 

Our brand audit yielded inconsistencies across platforms, communities and geographies. The SIFA brand voice was haphazard, confusing and barely a whisper in the brandscape.

Earmarked at responding to youth unemployment in Africa, a disjointed brand was limiting its potential.

Our strategy positioned SIFA as a strong brand, a voice that spoke with clarity, differentiated itself from the clutter and attracted the right audiences, making them want to belong to its community.

Sharing information, creating networks and enabling access to resources to help drive skills development and employment opportunities for Africa’s youth.

Brand & Comm’s Alignment.




Internal Buy-in.


Our staff workshops were a tool to encourage brand buy-in from a multi-stakeholder team that sat across geographies and time zones. 

Staff are brand ambassadors – if engaged they are a powerful, internal force to galvanise the growth, management and protection of the SIFA brand reputation.

Assigning them this responsibility and providing them with a comprehensive pack of brand guidelines and templates was a means to ensure brand consistency. 

It also decreased the honorous administration to ‘police’ the brand, for which the SIFA team had neither the time nor capacity to perform.

Flipping the Script.


The event became an annual staff engagement and Social Investment campaign, nationally across South Africa. 

The campaign significantly increased the charitable donations by year on year. Overall staff volunteerism increased. 

Bankers noted a marked improvement in client relationships as a direct result of the campaign. 

Employee surveys reported a 95% boost in overall staff morale.

The campaign which originated in South Africa was replicated globally, with ease. 

Independant stakeholder entities engaged

Brands re-aligned into one


Internal Buy-in and Strategy ratification

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About Us

   Shy-red Studio’s is a creative consultancy that solves business and brand problems.  

We use the art and science of marketing to deliver solutions, from concept to strategy and execution. 

Making business & marketing fit for purpose.

We are entrepreneurs at heart, a team of creators, problem solvers and strategists who believe in what we do.

Our team are honest and direct about your brand health. Our work has a single objective, to build businesses and grow reputations.

Our Focus

We treat marketing, branding and communication as core components of your business.

Whatever your business objective, our team creates work that helps it catch the wind.

We advise leaders, teams and programmes on innovation, social engineering, brand & digital marketing, internal communication, operations and reputation management.

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