A new identity for the merger of two global companies is far more complex than getting two CEO signatures and boardroom “Yes” votes. This is brand building at a scale where decisions alter everything from stock price and earnings to billion dollar new business projects. A unified vision is critical.
Headquartered in Denver, Colorado, IHS has an unprecedented depth in data and information. It’s an industry portfolio that spans Maritime (Jane’s Ships), automotive (Carfax), energy (CERA), and sectors from chemical and economics to technology and aerospace. Markit, based in London, specializes in data and analytics in the financial arena. Their innovations include products such as MarkitServe, KY3P and index, valuation, and trade tools.
The union would create a new leader in crucial business information and analytics. IHS Markit is a company serving 50,000 clients worldwide, 80% of the Fortune global 500, and 94 of the 100 largest corporations the United States.
However, sometimes these deals happen at warp speed. Working on a compressed seven week timeframe, Salt developed a new brand strategy, positioning narrative, corporate logo and identity system, launch website, video, and key go-to-market applications.
A global merger is a potentially volatile mix of cultures, brand equities, and product sets. In short, a shared vision is imperative. By defining a core synergy, we could establish what’s unique and compelling and bring the new company to life - for employees and customers, investors and media.
While there’s an impressive range of industry sector expertise for IHS Markit, what sets it apart from rivals is horizontal thinking. This creative ability to look across global industries allows them to connect the data points and trends that reveal cause and effect. In sum, it’s a powerful and proprietary new way to solve complex issues.
Salt positioned IHS Markit as The New Intelligence. It expresses their curiosity and mission to inspire a more integrated understanding to data and analytics. This distillation provided the launch point for visual design – an exploration of how the New Intelligence harnesses wide insights to drive wise decision-making.
The “aperture” logo is a demonstration of the New Intelligence in action, a spiral of insight lines focusing in to provide a smarter answer, a deeper perspective - it literally draws you into the solution. An energetic green hue marks a clear departure from the predictable blues that dominate the corporate space.
The new IHS Markit now had a strong positioning that sets forth a distinctive, high-level benefit for clients. More importantly, The New Intelligence defines a philosophy about how leaders in business, finance and government bring clarity to challenging, stock-altering decisions.
With a public launch and NASDAQ bell ringer date locked in, we set in place an aggressive schedule. While brand projects of this scale and complexity take months or even years, our timetable was seven weeks.
This required tight coordination with IHS and Markit leaders from Denver and London to New York and Singapore. With direct access to both CEO’s and open communication from all stake-holders, we were able to fast-track development.
Creating the positioning, identity, and launch assets for a new global brand in roughly 50 days is an exciting challenge. Perhaps the ultimate KPI comes from Lance Uggla, IHS Markit president: “When I see our new identity, I’m proud to be part of this great new company. I’m excited about the value IHS Markit will deliver.”
When two global companies merge, the implications of a new identity are also global in scale. By focusing on the fundamental, shared philosophy of The New Intelligence, IHS Markit launched with a compelling and distinctive brand story.