• Transform magazine
  • June 21, 2024


Brands for lives


Paul Docherty is the creative director at Skyne, Dubai. He discusses his agency’s projects with Sudanese brands Morouj and Al Farasha, and how they imbibe the unique culture of their home nation.

As we all know, brands fulfil many functions. When we engage with a brand it can make us feel good or special, it can tell the world what type of person we are, it can connect us to our tribe. 

Great brands can do all of this for us, but what if there was an even more fundamental connection – a connection which is so deep it becomes essential to our daily lives and even our survival.

In Sudan such a way of life exists. As a people, they are naturally resilient, optimistic, resourceful and caring. This contrasts with the daily challenges that they have faced over many years, such as drought, conflict, climate and economic hardships.

In Sudan, through our work for Morouj and Al Farasha (nominated in the FMCG and food and beverage categories at the Transform Awards MEA), we were able to see and learn at close range just how important these brands are to the people and the country. It was vitally important to understand why the people love and trust these brands. Morouj and Al Farasha are not simply mechanical producers of food that fulfil a commercial need. It goes way beyond that – they are part of the very fabric of Sudanese life.

Yes, they produce food and other commodities, but they have a genuine respect for their people, their customers, or as they call them, ‘family’. They reach out to the community by way of initiatives such as education, well-being, empowerment and family prosperity. And they do it with real engagement and energy.

When the team at Skyne travelled to Sudan and met with the people behind Morouj and Al Farasha, they were made to feel completely at home. Their warm and humble personality really made an impact on our approach to their brand evolution. 

We genuinely felt that to do justice to the brand, we had to integrate the character and personality of the Sudanese people. It had to completely reflect their values, their hopes and aspirations, now and in the future, it had to be believable. We created the tools to help them communicate to the world that they are a smart, progressive and ambitious force commercially, as well as a caring humanitarian partner. 

So, a brand can fulfil many functions and, in this case for Morouj and Al Farasha, it did that and more. It’s a wonderful balance between strong commercial success and continuing to play a genuine and meaningful part in the lives of the people of Sudan.