London 2012 poised to appoint branding group

London 2012 is ready to appoint a design consultancy to create the brand positioning for Britain’s Olympic Games in six years’ time.

The positioning project will kick off a volley of design work ahead of the Olympic Games themselves, which will include the creation of brand guidelines, a visual identity for the games, a corporate marque and live events for the opening and closing ceremonies. This will fuel further design appointments.

Following an initial round of written applications by consultancies last year, it is understood that London 2012 shortlisted eight creative groups, which are thought to be: Wolff Olins, Interbrand, Landor Associates, Fitch, The Partners, Williams Murray Hamm, New Solutions and Enterprise IG.

Navy Blue, which created London 2012’s bid document for the Games, and Kino Design, which designed the 2012 Olympic bid identity, were not shortlisted for the future branding project.

Three groups were selected for the final shortlist last week by the Olympic organisers, though London 2012 head of marketing Chris Denny declined to comment on the shortlist at this stage in the proceedings.

A spokeswoman for London 2012 was unable to confirm the three groups concerned, but says that the February target date for a consultancy appointment has not changed.

London 2012 had originally stated that it was planning to appoint a design group ‘by February’, in order to ‘conduct a brand positioning exercise looking at all design requirements for the build-up to the London Games and the Games themselves’.

The same group will then develop an emblem for the Games and a set of brand guidelines for its application across different media, as well as a corporate identity for use on stationery and other communications, confirms the spokeswoman.

It is envisaged by the organisers that the London 2012 Olympic logo will be launched either at the end of this year or in early 2007, and will be rolled out significantly after the 2008 Olympic Games in Beijing.

The search for the design consultancy is being handled by the Advertising Agency Register.

LONDON 2012 OLYMPIC TIMELINE:

• August 2003 – David Magliano appointed as marketing director for London 2012 bid

• October 2003 – controversial free pitch process is set up to choose the bid identity, featuring judges from all backgrounds

• November 2003 – Kino Design’s River Thames-inspired logo wins bid identity competition

• November 2004 – Navy Blue designs bid Candidature File

• July 2005 – London announced as winning city to hold 2012 games; Magliano winds down his role and is replaced in the interim by head of marketing Chris Denny

• December 2005 – Denny outlines an ‘industry best practice’ approach to the selection of consultancies to create the London Olympic Games emblem; AAR appointed to handle process

• January 2006 – three consultancies shortlisted from eight

• February 2006 – appointment of design group expected

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