American pharmaceutical company Pfizer has rebranded with a logo inspired by DNA’s double helix structure.
As well as a new logo, the rebrand comprises an identity overhaul complete with new typeface and dual-tone colour palette. The identity work has been carried out by New York, US-based studio Team. Brand consultancy Landor & Fitch helped to develop the rebrand strategy, Pfizer tells Design Week.
Pfizer was established by Charles Pfizer and his cousin Charles Erhart (both of German descent) in New York in 1849. Originally set up as a chemicals company in the Williamsburg district of Brooklyn, it developed over the next century by supplying penicillin during World War II.
Most recently, Pfizer partnered with German biotech company BioNTech to develop a Covid vaccine. It announced in November 2020 that the vaccine had a nearly 95% efficacy rate. The Pfizer vaccine began rolling out across the UK in December.
Marking a “new era”
The rebrand has been prompted by a “new era” for the company, according to Pfizer CEO Albert Bourla. “Pfizer is no longer in the business of just treating diseases – we’re curing and preventing them,” he adds.
The new focus on its science and research capabilities inspires the most prominent part of Pfizer’s rebrand: its DNA-themed logo.
The Pfizer wordmark now sits alongside a pair of blue-toned interlocking forms which represent the double helix. This aims to represent the “shift from commerce to science”, Pfizer says. “We’ve unlocked the pill form to reveal the core of what we do: a double helix, spiralling upward.”
The addition of the helix form is one of the most prominent logo changes in the company’s 171-year history. “Pfizer has become much more than a pharmaceutical company,” it adds.
Elsewhere, “bold imagery” aims to show how the company is prompting “world-shaping science”, Pfizer says. These comprise abstract three-dimensional shapes, again inspired by the double helix structure.
There’s also an emphasis on human-focused photography depicting “real people getting the help they need”.
Pfizer has retained the blue colour palette though says that it’s been “evolved” to a “vibrant, two-tone palette”. The primary shades are 286 C and Process Cyan, though there’s also a wider palette available for branding.
“In an industry awash in blue, we’re doubling down,” Pfizer says. “A choice that champions our history as a leader for the pioneers who have followed.”
According to design studio Team, the two-tone palette shows “Pfizer’s commitment to both science and patients”.
Typeface and design applications
Noto Sans is the updated typeface, picked for its “clean, open” characteristics. Pfizer says the pared-back typeface is “philosophically and aesthetically aligned” with its updated vision. The typeface was developed by Google as a way “to internationalize the internet”, according to the pharmaceutical company.
The new identity has rolled out across a variety of applications. The imagery can be seen on a range of communication material such as online campaigns as well as on professional documents like HR guides.
The logo’s new helix feature is also widely in use throughout material, including on a lab coat.
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