CAPE TOWN, 8 September 2022 – Astron Energy, which operates the second largest petroleum retail network in South Africa with over 850 service stations, has unveiled its new-look service stations.
The rebrand from Caltex to Astron Energy is the most significant change in the South African liquid fuels industry in three decades. It is also a key milestone in Astron Energy’s ambition of becoming the next biggest fuel brand in South Africa.
The first Astron Energy sites to feature the new brand include:
- Chuenespoort along the R37 in Limpopo
- KwaMakhuta in Amanzimtoti, KZN
- Nandi in eThekweni, KZN
- MACS in Brooklyn, Cape Town
The entire network of more than 850 Caltex sites in South Africa will be rebranded over the coming months, followed by those in Botswana. Added to this mammoth task, the company’s Cape Town refinery, lubricants manufacturing plant in Durban, 15 terminals, 180 commercial and industrial sites, as well as corporate facilities will be rebranded. This will make the rebranding initiative one of the largest logistical undertakings in South Africa’s recent history.
A total of 20 regional teams will be working simultaneously across the country to rebrand forecourts to Astron Energy. In the process, the team will:
- clock an estimated 741,888 resource hours on site
- install 1.3 million LEDs
- manufacture 63 shipping containers or 27 soccer fields worth of orange and charcoal forecourt canopy cladding, covering a total of 192,796 square metres
- utilise 6,224 holding down bolts for forecourt pylons
Astron Energy CEO Thabiet Booley said: “Our ambition as Astron Energy is clear and our new brand allows us to step confidently into the future, one in which we aim to welcome customers to our exciting new-look forecourts and experiences.”
According to Booley, rolling out the new brand marks a milestone in the history of the business stretching back more than a century. It positions the company well for a future in which forecourts will become one-stop centres of excellence and hyper convenience to cater for the demands of the modern, mobile and connected consumer.
“Our new brand presents us with the perfect opportunity to put the foundation stones in place as part of our drive to create connected customer journeys and connect with communities to unlock value in fuel, retail and beyond,” he said.
As part of the new brand, Astron Energy is launching:
- A new rewards programme that is more attainable and immediate, with simplicity of use and the chance to redeem daily rewards as part of a move towards gamification
- New Astron Energy Quartech Fuel 4-in-1 technology that fills smoother, protects longer, runs further, and keeps cleaner
Customers will still be able to earn and redeem Standard Bank UCount rewards points, while simultaneously participating in Astron Energy’s new rewards programme.
Astron Energy Head of Marketing, Cambridge Mokanyane, said the rebrand provides Astron Energy with the opportunity to build out the customer experience even further, with a strong emphasis on non-fuel retail offerings.
According to Mokanyane, global research has shown that “ultimate convenience” is where all forecourts will eventually migrate to, offering everything from fuel to food options, banking facilities, online and e-commerce services and drop-boxes for collecting deliveries.
In addition, the change to the new brand will see all Astron Energy service stations place careful emphasis and excellence on the basics, including bathroom facilities and lighting, as part of rejuvenating the overall customer experience.
In customer engagement surveys, clean, fresh and safe bathroom facilities were right at the top of what consumers expect when pulling into a forecourt. This was followed by proper lighting and the associated security benefits.
“Focusing on getting the foundations absolutely right will create the platform for us to build properly and sustainably for the future,” Booley added.
The brand’s bold colours were specifically chosen to allow Astron Energy to stand out in a largely undifferentiated market which tends to stick to the traditional colours usually associated with fuel brands.
Astron Energy will be building on the company’s 100-year plus history in South Africa and leveraging its extensive national service station footprint to become South Africa’s next biggest fuel brand.