I’ve just returned from our global creative summit in Montreal. What inspired me? Bags.

One of our sessions was on regional examples of companies using branding as a central organising principle and creating powerful businesses.

Our Zurich office referenced Freitag of Switzerland as ‘Friday’, which makes bags from truck tarps, car seat belts, bicycle inner tubes and airbags. It was established by two brothers who gazed out of their flat, looked at the freeway and came up with the idea.

Its shop has a 40m lorry container structure at the entrance – a sort of container cathedral spire to bag-making – and on the roof of the building you can look through telescopes over the freeway, to focus on the lorries going by and choose the next bag victim. Inside you can build your own bag and even eat container-shaped Swiss chocolates (pictured).

Our Korean office referenced the Hyundai M card – a choice of 26 mini, half-sized credit cards that were based on the 26 letters of the Roman alphabet. Each card has a different design and letter, and is aligned to specific loyalty, such as the arts, travel, leisure, education and so on. So, as you pay, you decide what you will get the benefit of. It’s incredibly popular and has a great following.

Both examples showed that when businesses embrace design and execute things with conviction, it results in powerful products and companies.

Andy Payne – Interbrand

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