hot shop, Umbrella, has recently acquired the image design and corporate identity business of the Kalyani Group.
The $1.2 billion Kalyani Group has a number of companies in its fold. The flagship company, Bharat Forge, is the number one automobile component exporter in Asia and the world's second largest forging company.
The account will be handled out of the newly formed Design Cell of Umbrella. Bhupal Ramnathkar, director, Umbrella, said, "We have been entrusted with the corporate identity business of the Kalyani group. We are quite excited about it as the account comes in the wake of our newly formed design cell."
The Design Cell will be headed by Supriya Kulkarni. Supriya brings with her over 9 years of experience in advertising and design. She has worked with high profile agencies such as Trikaya Grey (now Grey Worldwide), Lowe and Vyas Gianneti Creative.
Ramnathkar continues, "Corporate identity is a very serious business. It is something that stays with the company for over 50-100 years at the least. Any company's logo is the face of the company. That small piece of design, sitting quietly on a visiting card, is something that each and every individual, associated with the company, is exposed to. So, if you run a billion dollar company with a logo that looks shabby and apologetic, your company ends up looking shabby and apologetic too."
"Until recently, clients had no one to turn to but their agencies for corporate design requirements. And the way the agency structure functions, an art director, or a junior visualiser in most cases, spends a week designing logos on the comp and the client had to pick and choose from some 30-odd designs, the face of his most cherished possession," he adds.
"I can't really blame the clients. They had no other option. Thankfully, things have changed in the recent past. Today, clients realise that while agencies prove to be great partners in brand building, when it comes to enhancing their corporate image, specialised design outfits are the way to go. They realise that although they end up spending a lot more money this way, it is well spent."
Specialised design outfits put in an enormous amount of research behind every project. In case of Kalyani, a whole panel of designers from Umbrella went and studied the corporate head quarters, the factories and the flagship company, Bharat Forge.
The corporate culture was examined to the minutest detail. "In fact, the designers working on the brand are now extremely conversant with details of how many employees work for the company, how's their salary and promotion structure, what is the average age of the partnership between the employee and the company, and most importantly, what do the employees really feel about the company and the company's core philosophy," Ramnathkar adds.
"Even before going to the drawing boards, we studied corporate designs of major auto companies in the world. My team spent days studying designs of companies such as BMW, Mercedes Benz and Volkswagen."
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