Branding For A Connected World
What happens when a ‘personality brand' and a ‘performance brand' come together and are re-branded as one new brand?
What happens when a ‘personality brand’ and a ‘performance brand’ come together and are re-branded as one new brand? “Hopefully, it becomes a well performing, personality brand,” quips Mr Tim Leberecht, Chief Marketing Officer of Aricent Group.
Aricent Group is the new brand identity that the New Jersey-headquartered global innovation and technology services company is presenting to the world nowadays to market the offerings of its two distinct companies — Frog Design and Aricent (erstwhile Hughes Software). While Frog provides product innovation and design and has clients like Apple and Sony, Aricent offers R&D engineering and carrier services.
The new positioning, according to Leberecht, with whom Business Line caught up during a ‘Futurist CMOs’ conference in Gurgaon, is “as a provider of innovation services for the connected world.” Fittingly enough, Mr Leberecht’s topic at the conference was ‘Smart Brands in the Age of Hyper Connectivity.’ In an age where there are a 100 billion connected devices, how does a brand market itself is the question that marketers need to ask themselves, he says.
Meanwhile, for Aricent Group, the challenge in the re-branding exercise, says Mr Leberecht, was how to marry the attributes of Frog Design with all its traits of a strong personality brand with Aricent — a performance brand whose equity went back to the days when it was headquartered in India and called Hughes Software.
Aricent began life as Hughes, briefly became Flextronics Software, which had acquired Hughes as well as Frog Design. In 2006, Flextronics became Aricent, when a bunch of private equity players — Kohlberg Kravis Roberts and Sequoia Capital — got together and bought out the company. And now, in 2011, the company appears to be putting an end to the confusion for once and all by calling the whole entity Aricent Group, with the two offsprings as its sub-brands.
The new orange coloured identity of the Group was created by strategic branding firm Siegel + Gale. “We deliberately chose earthy, warm, Indian colours to humanise the company,” says Mr Leberecht. B2B marketing today is all about emotions, even for technology companies, he says.
A series of town-halls and workshops have been held in India where the Aricent Group has over 6,000 employees (worldwide it has 10,000), to acquaint employees with the new vision and brand idea. Once the internal exercise is over, the external audience — the enterprise community — will be told the re-branding story.
“Such re-branding exercises are transformational and hence take a lot of time,” says Mr Leberecht, summing up by saying, “Rome was not built in a day.”