NB Studio at business end of school identity redesign

Insead, one of the world’s top-ranking business schools, with campuses in France and Singapore, has appointed NB Studio to redesign its identity for the first time in over a decade, after a six-way pitch.

NB Studio went head to head against Wolff Olins, London CBN, The Nest and St Luke’s, BETC Euro RSCG Paris and Timothy Guy Design. It won the project after being shortlisted to take part in a two-way paid creative pitch against London CBN.

The consultancy is tasked with ‘revitalising’ the Insead identity, developing corporate guidelines, Web and print communications, as well as merchandising, signage and graphics. The logo will evolve, but ‘we are not sure how radical the final look will be’, says an Insead spokesman.

‘We will be looking at everything – there is the huge philosophical question of what the organisation stands for and the work needs to reflect that,’ says Nick Finney, creative director at NB Studio.

NB Studio will be collaborating closely with creative consultant Michael Wolff, who is leading the project, and brand consultant Simon Paterson, senior brand consultant and partner at London CBN. The consultancy has been advising on brand strategy since it developed a fundraising campaign for Insead two years ago. The identity is expected to launch this summer.

Insead is looking to appoint an ad agency within the next six months to promote the redrawn identity. It is also poised to hire a Web design consultancy after holding a three-way pitch. The group will be tasked with developing the design and architecture of its website, www.insead.edu.

Landor Associates designed Insead’s existing identity (pictured) in the early 1990s. Timothy Guy Design has introduced additional elements over the past five years.

The appointment of NB Studio forms part of a long-term strategy to ‘do more with design’, says the spokesman for Insead.

Since last October, Insead has been developing its brand positioning, looking to ‘identify the basic intellectual DNA of the school’, says the spokesman. The brand is based on ‘a business school for the world’ proposition.

‘We were humble in our expression of design before, but have been given confidence and courage to do more with design, to take an opportunity and embark on more wide-ranging developments of visual and graphic language,’ explains the spokesman.

Insead facts

• Insead poised to appoint an interactive consultancy to redesign its website, www.insead.edu

• The Financial Times MBA 2005 survey ranks the Insead MBA programme number eight in the world

• Currently, 144 faculty members reach more than 870 MBA students, 6400 executives and 71 PhD students from more than 75 countries

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