IIE BCom Honours in Strategic Brand Management - Distance (Online)

Qualification information
  • COURSE: Honours; Postgraduate Degree
  • MODE: Distance (Online)
  • DURATION: 2 years | Part-Time
  • NQF LEVEL: 8
  • CREDITS: 120
  • SAQA ID: 96079


This IIE Honours programme investigates and applies strategic models and tools to the practice of innovative and cost-effective brand management, founded on robust financial and economic principles. Students are exposed to core components such as the financial management of a brand within prevailing economic conditions, brand and market analysis from a commercial perspective, the application of sustainable and ethical business and brand practice, the development of communication strategies in context of the competitive environment and internal realities and the utilisation of metrics and models to assess brand performance and brand equity.


  • Brand and Brand Building
  • Strategic Brand Management and Leadership
  • Financial, Economic and Legal Aspects
  • Practice of Brand Building
  • Research

Brand and Brand Building
This module develops students’ understanding of the key brand concepts that guide the development of innovative and purposeful solutions to brand building opportunities and challenges. Emphasis is placed on creative, critical and systemic thinking.

Strategic Brand Management and Leadership
This module considers brand management from an “inside out” and “outside in” perspective to guide the management of a sustainable brand by the brand owner. Students will develop knowledge and understanding of both external and internal environmental variables to be considered when developing brand strategies and plans, both locally and internationally. The focus is on commercial and entrepreneurial brand management practice and the associated strategic and operational dimensions. Brands will be analysed in context of the market environment and stakeholder relationships within which they are built.

Financial, Economic and Legal Aspects
This module develops understanding and applied knowledge of the principles of finance, economics and compliance relative to the development of brand strategies and plans, both locally and internationally.

Practice of Brand Building
This module applies the theories of strategic brand management and communication to answer real-life client briefs. The focus is on the development and crafting of an innovative brand building strategy and plan that will address complex business and societal challenges. Students will implement brand research to investigate situational, environmental and commercial scenarios. They will derive consumer insights to drive the execution of original and meaningful solutions to multi-faceted brand challenges. Students work in teams to address real-life working situations; develop their skills in recommending brand solutions; and to collaborate with peers in a process of innovative problem solving.

Students will develop essential research skills for both professional and academic contexts alongside the ability to present and defend research to an expert audience. Emphasis is placed on independent and critical thinking, analysis, research design and methods, as well as academic discourse. Students complete a self-directed research project of limited scope under supervision in the discipline of the degree.

Structure of the honours degree for online delivery:

The IIE BCom Honours in Strategic Brand Management consists of 6 modules and has been set up to support a 2-year journey with a maximum completion time of 4 years. Students are required to register per academic year; and each academic year consists of two semesters.

Year 1
Semester One

  • Brand and Brand Building

Semester Two

  • Strategic Brand Management and Leadership
  • Research (18 months)

Year 2
Semester One

  • Financial, Economic and Legal Aspects
  • Research (18 months)

Semester Two

  • Practice of Brand Building
  • Research (18 months)

Online delivery includes:

  • An online learning system that leads students through the content, prescribed material and activities.
  • Online academic navigators (tutors) who are subject experts and maintain the human experience of the learning process.
  • Weekly live sessions with your online navigators.
  • A dedicated success navigator who supports students throughout the learning journey.
  • Online research supervisors who guide students’ research design, development and learning.
  • Purpose coaching pods that enable you to explore and develop your professional identity and potential.
  • Our challenging Business Simulation project – apply your business learnings in a simulated business environment to test your brand and business skills against the competition.
  • Access to our online information centre and resources.


While you can generally structure your study time as you need, there are scheduled online sessions during which you will get mediated support. Scheduled assessments in the form of online activities, assignments and exams are paced to ensure your studies progress.

What you need in terms of technology, time and materials:

  • A reliable internet connection (we recommend 5-10GB of data per month), your own device with at least Windows 7 (Microsoft Office 365 is available as a free download for IIE students), and Google Chrome, Microsoft Edge Chromium or Firefox.
  • Prescribed textbooks are available for online purchase.
  • Online students need to commit to approximately 12-15 hours a week for online engagement (some of which is after hours) with material and assessments to succeed.
  • All final semester exams need to be written at an IIE campus or other approved exam centre.

Please note synchronous sessions generally take place after hours.

To succeed in your online journey, you need to be:

  • Self-motivated and invested in your learning journey.
  • Disciplined and able to balance studying with work and family commitments.
  • Able to direct your own studies, maintaining a diligent pace.

To assist you in succeeding in your online journey, our teaching approach is:

  • Student-centric: we facilitate your thought processes to foster innovative ideas and creative solutions.
  • Authentic: we use real-life examples and case studies.
  • Activity-based: We move your learning forward through applied activities and assessments.
  • Discussion-based: we ask you questions and stimulate debate to provoke deep thought and insights about course content.

Tuition Fees

Total Fee for 1st year modules
R40 000 Full Settlement Total Fee
R42 740 Instalment Total Fee (10 Monthly Instalments)
A *Pre-Registration Fee of R2 000 and *Deposit of R4 412 are included in the Total Fee.

Total Fee for 2nd year modules (subject to an annual fee increase)
R20 000 Full Settlement Total Fee
R21 370 Instalment Total Fee (10 Monthly Instalments)
*Deposit of R3 206 are included in the Total Fee.

Please note:

  • Applications for the 2024 intake are subject to a non-refundable application fee of R400.
  • You will be required to complete a new contract annually which will include fees for that year.
  • Returning students can obtain the 2023 fees from their Relationship Navigator.

Entry Requirements

  • An appropriate Bachelor’s Degree with an average of 60% in the final year; OR
  • An appropriate Advanced Diploma, provided that a 360 credit Diploma or appropriate equivalent has been completed with an average of 60% in the final year. An appropriate Degree or Advanced Diploma would normally be in the fields of either: Branding, Business Management, Economics, Financial Management, Marketing Management or Strategic Management.

 Please note:

  • Candidates are normally required to have a minimum final year average of 60% in the qualifications final-year (NQF Level 7) modules. Those with a final year average of 55-59% will be admitted if they attained 60% or higher for the designated cognate/core discipline cognate/core discipline module at final year (NQF Level 7) level.
  • Accounting or Financial Management AND Economics or Statistics must be part of the undergraduate qualification and candidates are required to have passed these modules to gain entry.

Senate Discretionary Admission: 

Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL): Candidates who fall outside the above criteria, but who can demonstrate, to the satisfaction of The IIE that they have an appropriate, related qualification or work-based learning, which has taken the candidate to the equivalent of an NQF Level 7 Branding, Business Management, Economics, Financial Management, Marketing or Strategic Management - related qualification, may be considered for admission into this programme through an RPL process.

 Additional Notes:

Graduates of The IIE who do not meet the admissions requirements for admission to Honours can enrol for and repeat all or some of their NQF Level 7 modules in order to improve their marks so that they can meet the entry requirements for Honours. These graduate students will then receive an additional transcript after the completion of the repeat module(s), where the repeat module(s) will appear as a second iteration of the module(s) on the transcript. The marks from the second iteration can then be used for admission to Honours in the subsequent academic year. This option is only available to graduates from The IIE and does not apply to graduates from other HE institutions.

International Admission:

  • A SAQA NQF L7 Evaluation Certificate in an appropriate field and meeting the additional admission requirements.
Jobs in this field:
  • Agency Strategic Planning
  • Brand or Product Management
  • Entrepreneurship
  • Small Business Ownership
  • Marketing Research
  • Social Innovation
  • New Business Development
  • Sustainable Development


Moosa Molibeli

Class of 2017

Moosa is a successful Junior Strategy and Insights Specialist at Liquorish Ink. The IIE BCom in Strategic Brand Management at Vega helped shape her thinking and strategic skillset.

Simeon Laker

Class of 2017

“Vega forces you out of your comfort zone and into a space where you adapt and grow” – Simeon is currently furthering his studies at the University of Stellenbosch Business School.

Danielle Fevrier

Class of 2017

The IIE’s Vega provided Danielle with the stepping-stone that she needed to transition from a traditional business degree into the world of strategic brand building.