At the end of the nineteenth century, just as colonial Africa was opening up as a market, all the manufacturers of shoes in Victorian England sent their representatives to Africa to see if there might be an opportunity there for their wares.
All duly came back in time with the same answer. ‘Nobody in Africa wears shoes. So, there is no market for our products there.’
All, that is, save for the Bata rep. He came back saying, ‘Nobody in Africa wears shoes. So, there’s a huge market for our products in Africa!’
And that’s why signs promoting Bata appear all over Africa, even in the remotest of spots. It’s why Bata’s shoes are known as the shoes of Africa.