IN THE OFTEN GREY WORLD OF FINANCE, AN ASSET MANAGEMENT BUSINESS THAT SEES THINGS IN BLACK AND WHITE IS A RARE BEAST. INVESTEC’S BOLD APPROACH TO BRAND AND THOUGHT-LEADERSHIP HAS HELPED A START-UP GROW TO $120BN BUSINESS.
INVESTEC ASSET MANAGEMENT
Since 1991 Investec Asset Management has grown from a South African start-up to a global business managing over £120bn of clients assets around the world.
We developed the Investec brand identity to express their leadership status by leveraging the Out of the Ordinary brand idea and the bold black and white spirit of the zebra. Interviews with clients and teams revealed that at the heart of the business is an insatiable curiosity and desire to see what is possible, combined with a desire to succeed for their clients. We defined this personality as Applied Curiosity and this became the driver of the brand identity.
A strong palette of black and white is injected with a shot of colour to focus on the subject of each communication. Together with a bold use of typography, Investec’s communications have a single-minded confidence rare in this sector.
We harnessed the company’s South African origin and the character of its founding members that are key to the distinctive culture of the business. We brought this culture to the fore by showcasing key individuals on the site, along with their thoughts and opinions to highlight the human side of the business.
Through extensive analysis and prototyping, we identified a simpler user journey and combined this with a bold, direct tone of voice and a strong black and white visual style, echoing the iconic zebra. This new design enables Investec Asset Management to galvanise their premium positioning and offer their clients a more brand-led user experience that helps build relationships at an earlier stage in the customer journey.
We worked with Investec to create a series of Investment Institute Journals – an annual collection of white papers from the Institute’s global network of finance experts, to provide insights and fresh ideas to investors around the world.
Our challenge was to turn 20,000 words of financial and economic data into content that would excite and inspire the reader. Our solution was to create powerful graphic design elements to unify the white papers with one visual theme. For the first two editions, we used photography, hand drawn illustrations and forceful black and white typography to convey the exclusive and authoritative nature of the content to pull the reader into each piece.
The most recent instalment is focused on the evolution of China’s capital markets, we took inspiration from the Chinese language, history and art. Celebrating the visually rich culture and artistic heritage of the country, we applied traditional paper craft to create striking illustrations – all in the colour red that for centuries has represented good fortune in Chinese culture – to engage and inspire the audience with one powerful theme.
The Journals have become a key driver for the Investment Institute, creating a dialogue with its global audience to drive innovation and added value within the business.