Red Dot to end German bias as six UK groups scoop gongs

Just six British design groups triumphed at this year’s German-based Red Dot awards, gaining eight awards between them.

A total of 34 nations submitted 3880 entries, of which 336 received awards and 27 won Best of the Best awards.

However, in future years, it may be easier for non-German consultancies to win, as more multilingual judging panels are added, suggests Red Dot awards founder Peter Zec.

Zec reveals that the organisers are considering ‘a change of policy’ for the communications award to make it easier for non-German-speaking nations to win. ‘Communications design is so tied to language that the competition is perceived as exclusively German,’ he admits. ‘We have made an effort to make the awards truly international – and succeeded in the product awards, where more than 50 per cent of entries are non-German. However, the overwhelming majority of communications entries are still German.’

Red Dot intends to increase the number of judging teams to two in Europe, and also introduce a team in China to judge Asian entries.

Lewis Moberly managed to scoop the UK’s first Best of the Best Red Dot award in two years. It won the award in the packaging design category for its Waitrose Cooks’ Ingredients range. The group also won a Red Dot for its Waitrose mustard packaging range.

De-construct picked up an interactive media award for its work on fundraising website

British entries performed best in the corporate design category. SAS scooped two awards for its Land Securities 2007 annual report and its KBC Graduate Recruitment Campaign, while R&D&Co won for the redesign of The Chambers Dictionary cover (pictured).

This is the first time both R&D&Co and Lewis Moberly have entered the awards. R&D&Co creative director Rob Andrews says, ‘We entered the competition this year because we want to be perceived as a European, not just a UK, company.’

Mary Lewis, Lewis Moberly creative director and a former president of the D&AD awards, says, ‘European clients often use awards books to find designers, so being included in the book should be helpful to us in terms of finding new European partners.’ She observes that, ‘The Red Dot awards are the equivalent of the D&AD awards in the UK, although D&AD has a much bigger global reach.’

Zec believes that British design consultancies are strongest in communications design. ‘I meet British communications designers wherever I am in the world – they have a very strong global presence,’ he says. ‘They have developed their own design language, fusing typography, imaging and a sense of humour that is influencing the rest of the world.’

An exhibition of the winning work will be on show from 7 December to 6 January at the Red Dot Design Museum in Zollverein, Germany. The Red Dot International Communication Design Yearbook will be published in November.

For further information, visit

• Best of the Best: Lewis Moberly for Waitrose Cooks’ Ingredients
• Lewis Moberly for Waitrose Mustards
• SAS for the Land Securities 2007 annual report
• SAS for the KBC Graduate Recruitment Campaign
• R&D&Co for the Chambers Dictionary cover
• 999 Design for the Dovetail furniture company’s identity
• Ginette Caron for the WA office furniture system by Knoll/Identity

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