There is no doubt South Africa’s excellent tourism offering is unmatched. The country boasts diverse and breathtaking landscapes, wildlife, wide open spaces, and a 3,000-kilometer coastline with some of the best beaches in the world. But, what really makes South Africa special and so attractive? It is the warm people whose hospitality and excellence have captivated the hearts of many travellers from around the world.
In promoting the best of South Africa, earlier tonight South African Tourism revealed, in a moving 90-second video entitled ‘The Best Of Us’, that South Africa’s rugby captain, Siya Kolisi, is the marketing entities’ new global brand advocate. The world-acclaimed Springbok captain is the first of the advocates who form part of a new global campaign that looks to celebrate the country’s excellence by profiling and partnering with South Africans who are making waves on the global stage in their various fields including sports, arts and culture, academia etc.
“With the Rugby World Cup starting in September in France, and as the Springboks prepare for the upcoming tournament, Siya is the perfect person to partner with South African Tourism in our marketing and promotional efforts as we seek to attract more travellers to come to visit our country. He is an exceptional South African whose story and journey inspire people from various parts of the globe. He is a true South African icon,” says Acting Chief Executive Officer at South African Tourism, Nomasonto Ndlovu.
The partnership between Siya and South African Tourism is in collaboration with Roc Nation Sports International, the world-renowned agency that represents Kolisi locally and internationally.
Hailing from Zwide, a Township in Gqeberha in the Eastern Cape province, Siya has captured the hearts of South Africans and the world as captain of the South African rugby team, the Springboks. He captained the South African team at the 2019 International Rugby World Cup in Yokohama, Japan, defeating England 32-12 in the final to lift the Webb Ellis Cup. This was South Africa’s third World Cup win, tying with New Zealand, and with that, Siya became the first black captain of a World Cup-winning side in the history of the sport.
“I’m super excited about this partnership because as a proud advocate for our country, I’ve always spoken about how much I love South Africa, and what a special place it is,” Kolisi commented. “I see this partnership as an opportunity to promote the entire tourism sector in South Africa, and I want to be a leading voice in encouraging everyone to come and see the best of what the country, and we as South Africans, have to offer.”
Siya’s authentic leadership and worldwide appeal is the compelling reason why South African Tourism has come to walk this journey with him towards inspiring the nation, inspiring the tourism sector, and inspiring travellers. Our year-long collaboration will see Siya represent the country in different capacities as we aim to re-position South Africa locally and in our key source markets internationally.
“With the global tourism industry well on its recovery following the Covid-19 pandemic, various destinations are showcasing their tourism offerings to attract travellers. For South Africa we know where our best comes from. It comes from our unique places, our exceptional people and our authentic and rich cultures and way of life,” adds Ndlovu.
The tourism industry and media stakeholders gathered at a star-studded event, which kicked off with a nostalgic performance by South African Jazz legend Vusi Mahlasela, who also curated a song specially for ‘The Best Of Us’ reveal. In keeping with the ‘best of us’ spirit, the event also featured Grammy award-winning South African musician, Zakes Bantwini, as well as some members of the Springbok team.
Before Covid-19, the South African Tourism sector welcomed about 10 million arrivals and contributed 3,7% to GDP. The sector is currently showing great signs of recovery and this campaign will go a long way in inspiring travellers to choose South Africa.