So you like buying your petrol at Shell stations, do you? Why not, it wasn’t Shell that caused the sea bird massacring Gulf of Mexico oil spill and occasionally they have special deals on energy drinks and lollies. But Shell stations in their current form are destined to become a thing of the past.
In a massive rebranding exercise Shell stations will from June become Z (pronounced Zed) service stations. That’s right, Z is the new Shell.
After several months research and half a million dollars spent, marketing experts came up with Z to replace the 50 year-old Shell logo. Starting with Shell Greenlane in Auckland, New Zealand’s 226 Shell service stations will be rebranded with the new Z logo. Beginning next month, it will take around a year to fully complete. The objective of it all is to give NZ consumers a service station that can be seen as totally Kiwi.
Back in April 2010, Shell‟s fuel business in New Zealand was sold to the New Zealand Superannuation Fund and Kiwi infrastructure company Infratil for NZ$695 million. Greenstone Energy is the company that owns and operates these assets.
“When the Shell business was purchased, we set about trying to understand what consumers actually wanted in a retail fuel company, how they felt about this sector and the companies operating in it,” said Greenstone CEO Mike Bennetts. “This became the biggest piece of industry-specific consumer research in a decade, touching 17,000 consumers. The insights we‟ve gained from listening to our customers and those of our competitors have seen us radically rethink our business.”
Mike Bennetts said the most immediate and visible change would be the largest and most visible rebranding exercise in recent New Zealand history.
Bennetts continues “Our customers told us loud and clear that the way we think about ourselves as Kiwis – our national identity – is changing fast. We‟ve shifted away from the number 8 wire Kiwi battler stereotypes to a more confident and assured sense of our place in the world. The Z brand will provide a visual point of difference and customers will know they‟re supporting a Kiwi company. ”
Further to the fancy rebranding from Shell to Z, to sweeten the deal the new Z stations will hire 200 new employees to provide forecourt service during the day. There will also be better food in the shop including higher-grade New Zealand made pies and cupcakes which will benefit those who luck to snack on the run.
Keep your eyes peeled for the new Z fuel stations from next month.