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New image for post-Barclays era

Lion still roars in Premier League rebrand

English Premier League logo

The English Premier League is preparing for life without a title sponsor by announcing its first rebrand in a decade.

Its deal with Barclays bank will end with the last match of the current season and it will revert to the Premier League.

Barclays indicated in March last year that it would not renew its contract when the current deal expires.

It has been known as the Barclays Premier League since 2007/08. Between 2001 and 2004, it was known as the Barclaycard Premiership and, from 1993 to 2001, the Carling Premiership.

Creative branding agency DesignStudio and Robin Brand Consultants were hired last autumn following a competitive pitch to introduce a new visual identity and unified brand.

The new brand is built around five colours – purple, sky blue, magenta, yellow and lime green – with a lower case font.

As such it contrasts with the current all-capitals, blue-and-white branding, although it has been decided to retain the familiar ‘lion and crown’ logo which has been present since the Premier League was formed in 1992.

There were reports last month that the lion would be ditched, but it is regarded by supporters as a potent and identifiable symbol of England and the English game.

Chief executive and co-founder of DesignStudio Paul Stafford said: “Lots of people around the world understood that lion to represent the Premier League … so it wasn’t about destroying everything that was there to build something new, it was about building on that equity and heritage.”

The agency’s executive creative director Stuart Watson, said they wanted “to create a bold and vibrant identity that includes a modern take on the lion icon.” The new image emits a different “tone, spirit and attitude” to the brand, he said. It is also designed for multi-media, enabling it to work better than the league’s current logo on mobile devices and as an app.

Premier League managing director Richard Masters said in a statement: “From next season we will move away from title sponsorship and the competition will be known simply as the Premier League, a decision which provided the opportunity to consider how we wanted to present ourselves as an organisation and competition.

“We are very pleased with the outcome: a visual identity which is relevant, modern and flexible that will help us celebrate everyone that makes the Premier League. We look forward to sharing more details of our new positioning in the coming months.”

The Premier League has declined to say how much the re-branding cost, apart from Master saying it was “not cheap”.


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