FutureBrand in £1m global win

FutureBrand has won the global brand repositioning and brand architecture management of Visa International, a job that is expected to be worth nearly £1m.

The primary task is to reposition the organisation as “the best way to pay” whatever the purchase and however it is made.

Visa International is the global association for all member banks, not the brands that operate under the Visa marque, such as Barclays’ credit card Barclaycard, which will not be affected.

The consultancy won through a two-stage pitch process, the second leg of which involved Landor Associates and US consultancy Lippincott & Margulies and was held a fortnight ago in Salt Lake City. The consultancies pitched to Visa International’s global brand management group. FutureBrand was confirmed as the victor on Tuesday.

It will begin work immediately and its first work will be presented at the client’s biennial “all boards conference” in June, when its six regional boards meet. The culmination of the job will not be until the Athens Olympics in 2004, according to FutureBrand Corporate managing director Christopher Nurko.

The task is to define the brand positioning and its look, feel and voice, which includes all visual design, management of the brand architecture and all its “verbal messaging”, Nurko says. “It means what the brand says about itself and how it says it, which applies to everything from employee newsletters to press releases,” he comments.

He adds that the consultancy will produce a brand book, a brand academy to share best practice through the organisation and brand management in the digital arena.

The project will include a review of the acceptance flag, which is the sign displayed by businesses that accept Visa cards, which Nurko says is likely to be evolved rather than radically changed. “We wouldn’t want to compromise customer recognition,” he says.

A decision on the flag will be made this year, but any changes are likely to take two to three years to filter through to the flags seen in retailers and on credit cards.

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