Centre for Process Innovation

CPI is a technology innovation centre that helps companies to develop, prove and commercialise the next generation of products and processes.

Branding, Print Design, Signage, Web Design, Web Development

Centre for Process Innovation

Background

Working as Lead Designer at CPI, I’ve helped them improve, develop and maintain their visual identity over the past few years.

In 2014, I was tasked with a full redesign of CPI’s brand identity, including their logo. The design and development of the new brand identity was a huge undertaking, and took a total of 5 months. The launch of the new brand was meticulously planned, and was rolled out in just one weekend. All signage, logos, office documents, templates, banner stands, brochures, flyers, office branding, presentations, merchandise, websites, intranet, videos – anything with the old branding or logo – was updated in that one weekend across 3 locations.

Since then, I’ve designed annual reports, brochures, conference and exhibition materials, office branding and signage, their new website and more – whilst continuing to develop and maintain their brand.

The Branding

CPI’s previous branding was looking very dated. Originally, the colours represented the company’s technology platforms, and they wanted to redesign their brand so that they could have as many platforms as they wanted, without worrying about giving each one a specific colour. Their logo was made up of their name, mark and strapline. The mark in particular stopped the team from producing any merchandise or print materials in single colour – custom variations of the logo had to be created for this in particular, which completely changed the look of the logo.

From the brief, I was told to keep the circular shape and somehow maintain the essence of the interconnected segments that made up the mark – these represented their technologies, staff and clients, working together as one. The new logo also had to work in single colour and be flexible enough to use across any type of media.

CPI's old logo
The old logo
CPI's new logo
The new logo

I began stripping the logo elements down and focussed my attention on the mark and the typography, breaking down what did and didn’t work. From the analysis of the logo, I started by removing the strapline entirely. A strapline should not be cemented in a logo but rather accompany it, to be used as and when it is appropriate. The strapline might also change over time, so it made sense to remove it so that it gave CPI the flexibility to do so.

For the typeface, I removed the italicised type, replacing it with a more modern typeface – Foundry Sterling. This typeface remained on-brand as it was already current used for all body copy on CPI’s marketing materials. This immediately removed the juxtaposition of older and modern typefaces, and gave it a more modern look and feel. The removal of the strapline allowed for more economical use of white space.

Colour palette from the brand guidelines
Colour palette from the brand guidelines
Typography from the brand guidelines
Typography from the brand guidelines

The mark posed the hardest challenge as it had to maintain existing elements, while making them more suitable for single colour reproduction. I created multiple redesigns of the segments, eventually settling on a design where each segment arches over a circular shape, symbolising the company’s bridging of the innovation gap. The uniform arrangement of the segments imply consistency, reliability and forward momentum – removing the impression of inconsistency and playfulness. I stuck with the blue colour they wanted to maintain, and added some complementary blues and greys, creating a more refined, professional and undiluted colour palette for the company going forward.

The Result

The end result gave CPI’s brand a modern and professional look and feel, whilst still retaining the elements they wanted to keep from their previous brand identity. The new logo can be applied in single colour and can now be used consistently across any type of media.

I’ve designed a new range of branded materials for CPI to be used across print, web and digital media. This has included a set of a completely new brand guidelines, a new intranet and website, along with a full suite of brochures, flyers, case studies, annual reports, exhibition materials, videos, signage and more – all of which have had great feedback from CPI, their customers and their peers.

CPI's annual report
A range of CPI branded materials
CPI signage
CPI brochure
Aerospace market page on CPI's website