It seems unlikely that an English-speaker was in the room when Russian energy giant Gazprom named its new joint venture last week with Nigerian firm, NNPC.
If there was, then a tremendous lack of foresight was also present, as the state-owned gas provider has decided the enlarged group will trade under the brand name ‘Nigaz.’
The marketing team responsible obviously tried to do the amalgamation trick pulled off by DHL – formerly Dalsey, Hillblom and Lynn, by fusing ‘Nigeria’ with ‘Gaz.’
But as Brand Republic rightly points out, in between howling at the branding blunder, ‘Nigaz’ has rather different connotations when written down and spoken in English.
‘Nigaz’ is yet to feature on Gazprom’s website, which does confirm the formation of its partnership with NNPC but interestingly, offers no name for the new enterprise.
Marketers will wonder if the outfit is setting itself up for another fall amid reports it will scale one of the tallest peaks in the Altai region to erect a giant Gazprom logo.
The Associated Press reported that an expedition is scheduled to climb the 11,200ft (3,410-metre) mountain later this summer.