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Pink taxis hit the streets of Karachi

Karachi

Commuting in the crowded city of Karachi, in Pakistan, is often an unpleasant experience for women, especially in some districts in the East, which are rated as the most unsafe ones. According to a recent report, most female commuters face hostility and sexual harassment when using public transport.

In order to tackle the issue and protect female customers, a new initiative has been introduced in the city, which allows women to call the Pink Taxi, a women-only taxi, by phone, mobile app or directly on the street. The taxi drivers include housewives, students and young women, who wear a pink scarf and a black coat as their uniform.

Since lack of safe transportation is one of the reasons why the majority of women in Pakistan do not work, there was certainly a need for such a service, which will also be extended to other cities, including Lahore and Islamabad, in the upcoming months.

By Maria D'Innocenzo

All you need is love… but Ghanaian cocoa definitely helps!

Ghana cocoa

At the heart of the country's economy, cocoa is cultivated in six regions of Ghana: Western, Central, Brong Ahafo, Eastern, Ashanti and the Volta regions. First exported at the end of the 19th century, cocoa played an important role both in the lives of cocoa farmers and in the Ghanaian economy, with the continent becoming the world’s leading cocoa producer in the early 20th century.

In 1930, the government took over control of the industry, setting up a buying monopoly for all the cocoa produced in Ghana. Although the price increased, cocoa farmers were underpaid by the government body, so they stopped producing cocoa until a “Structural Adjustment Programme” was introduced to rescue the economy and reform the internal cocoa market.

Nowadays, Ghana’s chocolates are appreciated worldwide for their natural and distinct taste. The flagship brand is the Golden Tree Kingsbite Milk Chocolate, sold alongside other flavours introduced by Ghana’s Cocoa Processing Company over the years.

About 10 years ago, in order to highlight the nutritional benefits of chocolate and other cocoa products, and to promote domestic tourism, the Ghana Tourism Authority, in collaboration with Cocoa Processing Company, Ghana Cocoa Board and Ghana Chef Association, instituted a “National Chocolate Day”, marked yearly and coinciding with the celebration of Valentine’s Day.

Based on the theme “Love Chocolate, Love Adventure”, this year’s celebration aimed at promoting agro-tourism in the country, and at creating awareness of the need for Ghanaians to act as patrons for cocoa products and to help generate more revenue for national development. Activities that marked the day included a social media campaign aimed at awarding winners with prizes, and Golden Tree chocolates handed out to inbound passengers to Ghana on the day. Who doesn't love a day dedicated to chocolate?

By Maria D'Innocenzo

NFC technology for a better consumer experience

NFEC technology

Up until now, NFC technology was used mainly as a method of making smartphone payments. However, brands have recently started to explore the new opportunities that the technology offers, especially in terms of creating a better experience for consumers

For example, to mark the occasion of St. Patrick’s Day, Jameson Whiskey launched its first collection of their new limited edition bottle range by incorporating the NFC technology, developed exclusively for the Irish market, and offering a range of services and digital experiences. A neck hanger carrying instructions on how to engage, and a URL for iPhone users whose phones do not read NFC tags yet, supported the NFC tag on the bottle.

When an NFC-enabled smartphone came into contact with the product, the tag launched a URL directly in the smartphone’s browser. Through the IoT-enabled bottles, consumers could access the history and culture of the brand, St. Patrick’s Day experiences and cocktail recipes, the chance to win a pair of tickets to the Jameson Distillery in Dublin, and a Jameson Experience event, which took place on the 16th of March.

NFC technology represents a new way for brands to engage with consumers. Through this local targeting, Jameson aimed at connecting with consumers by tapping into their behaviour and trends, driving engagement and brand awareness in a personal and bespoke way. This highly targeted, personalised advertising is not only cool, but it also seems to be the right channel for brands!
By Maria D'Innocenzo