Re-brand, Re-name… RE-THINK!


I just finished watching, from a PR point of view, one of the most utterly perplexing advertisements… ever!  I just discovered that the erstwhile stalwart of the Australian medical insurance industry, MBF, is now calling itself… wait for it… Bupa.  Bupa?  Seriously?

My child who was with me when this advertisement went to air, asked me if someone had said ‘poopa’ on TV, and wasn’t that a rude word?

Some investigation reveals that MBF has been bought out by a UK health company called, yes, Bupa.  Bupa is another of these acronyms – in this case standing for British United Provident Association.  Eeek.  It hardly rolls off the toungue.

I understand this must have been a corporate decision, and Bupa is a giant in the health insurance industry, but I can’t help thinking that at some point when this name was chosen that someone must have had concerns.   It’s a shame really, as MBF has a strong identity concept – Medical Benefits Fund – as a business name it ticks all the boxes, its identity and service offering are implicit in the name.  Plus add to this the decades of long-held goodwill and positive association for members, all gone with the stroke of a pen.

It would be interesting to know how MBF customers feel about the change, and if they will continue to feel the same loyalty into the future, and whether they would recommend Bupa to their friends.  We’ll see!

Yours in PR,

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1 Comment »

  1. Jenny Said:

    I agree! I wonder how much this will impact on their bottom line – at least while people adjust to the change. Bupa is a big international insurance company so to me it’s like this great big giant has swooped in and swallowed up MBF.


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