Having the desired effect

Clare Dowdy looks at the winners of this year’s DBA Design Effectiveness Awards. Information design leads the pack, with a number of groups picking up two awards

Information design ruled at the Design Business Association Design Effectiveness Awards on Monday night, with the redesigned Yellow Pages scooping the Grand Prix and the information print design category.

Designed by Johnson Banks, the revamped directory includes a new typeface and 12 new covers, each featuring a yellow object. More than 200 amusing filler ads are intended to make cross-referencing easier. Research by Millard Brown showed that 81 per cent of users found the new design easier to use, and 97 per cent preferred the new cover.

Meanwhile, the newly-designed e-commerce site for Diesel by Real Time Studio, launched in March, has resulted in an increase in sales of 295 per cent. It won the information design IT category.

Johnson Banks was not the only consultancy to pick up two prizes. Elmwood won the own-brand food and drink packaging category for Asda Chilled Pizzas, which have seen an 81 per cent increase in sales. The Leeds group also won the exhibition category for ICI Acrylics’ Lucite exhibition stand, which subsequently sold 900 tonnes of the material.

Leeds consultancy WPA Pinfold won the corporate identity under £1m category, which went to Greenalls Group’s Squares retail brands. In the three years since its launch, the chain has doubled in size and last year’s profits were up by 35 per cent.

Both product design categories went to London Associates – consumer for its work for Pains Wessex McMurdo’s SOS 406 EPIRB, a new distress signal which has increased the client’s share of the marine sector from 5 per cent to 45 per cent; and industrial for the Alspa MV 3000, which controls motors in plant machinery.

The winners

Grand prix

Johnson Banks and Yellow Pages for Yellow Pages

Corporate identity over £1m

Carter Wong & Partners and Unilever for Unilever Ice Cream brand identity

Corporate identity under £1m

WPA Pinfold and Greenalls Group for Squares retail brands

Corporate literature

Marsteller and Andersen Consulting for the 3P’s graduate recruitment campaign

Consumer literature

Interbrand Newell and Sorrell and Financial Times Management for Financial Minds

Business to business literature

Silk Pearce and Arjo Wiggins Fine Papers for Keaykolour

Branded food/drink packaging

Blue Marlin and E Brace & Partners for Brace’s Bakery

Branded non-food/drink

Maddison and A Nelson & Co for Clikpak

Own-brand food/drink

Elmwood and Asda Stores for Asda branded Chilled Pizzas

Own-brand non-food/drink

Turner Duckworth and Superdrug for Secret Weapon

Consumer product design

London Associates and Pains Wessex McMurdo for SOS 406 EPIRB

Industrial product design

London Associates and Alstom Drives and Control for Alspa MV 3000

Retail interiors

Cobalt and Watch2Watch for Watch2Watch


Elmwood and ICI Acrylics for Lucite stand

Information design – print

Johnson Banks and Yellow Pages for Yellow Pages

Information design – IT

Real Time Studio and Diesel SPA for Diesel UK Store e-commerce

Design for good

Moore Lowenhoff and Education Extra for reading packs for secondary schools

The Open Agency and Norwood Ravenswood for Norwood Ravenswood Social and Personal


Folio Creative and Haringey Council for Don’t Mess With US

1999 Prince Philip designers prize

Professor William Hills

Latest articles