Illustrating Bacardí’s brand story

When rum brand Bacardí launched a new identity earlier this year, it focused heavily on the ‘story’ of the eponymous Bacardí family.

The concept of brand storytelling might have come in for a bit of a bashing recently, but few could argue that the Bacardís gave brand consultancies of the future plenty to work with.

Don Facundo Bacardí Masso founded the brand in Cuba in 1862 and had to face down challenges including an earthquake and a fire that ravaged his distillery.

His son Juan and daughter Maria were killed in a cholera outbreak, while his other son Emilio was a freedom fighter battling for an independent Cuba, being forced into exile and causing the Bacardí brand to move to Puerto Rico.

A new graphic novel, released by Bacardí, tells the story of Emilio and his exile, before his eventual rise to become mayor of Santiago de Cuba.

It is written by prolific comics author Warren Ellis, whose credits include Batman, X-Men and Judge Dredd. The artwork is by US artist Michael Allred, famous for his Madman creation.

Apparently Allred created the artwork for the novel using inks infused with Bacardí Gold rum, a process he (perhaps unsurprisingly) says he ‘loved’.

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The Spirit of Bacardí graphic novel can be downloaded from www.bacardi.com/spiritofbacardi.

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