Carlsberg: probably the best rebrand in the world?

Danish brewery Carlsberg has today unveiled a major global rebrand, courtesy of Bristol-based Taxi Studio. Following extensive research into the brand's 171-year heritage, the brand's core elements – logo, hop leaf, crown, brand typeface and signature of Carlsberg founder JC Jacobsen – have been carefully re-crafted for the first time in several years.

Keen to stay true to the brewery's rich heritage, the team at Taxi bucked industry design trends, focusing their efforts instead on the longevity of the brand.

Spencer Buck, creative partner at Taxi Studio, says: "The new design system is very much anti-trend. It's designed to be permanent, or more permanent than any iteration of the design system has been before. There shouldn't be any need to change this for a good long time. That's part of the sustainable thinking that was built into the very core of the brief."

Carlsberg rebrand

Carlsberg's infamous hop leaf is one of many elements to undergo an update

Constant pursuit of better

At the heart of the Carlsberg brand is founder Jacobsen's so-called 'Golden Words' from his will: "In working the brewery we should be in constant pursuit of better beer so that the brewery may always set standards and assist in keeping beer brewing at a high and honourable level".

And it's these Golden Words and "constant pursuit of better" that became the driving force behind the rebrand; a simple yet versatile identity system that now works effectively across all branding elements. 

Carlsberg rebrand

Carlsberg's core elements have been carefully re-crafted to work across all branding elements

Jessica Felby, design director on the project for Carlsberg, says: "Designs used to last 10 years, then five, now brands redesign every three years. It's all based on trends that go out of style. We weren't going to do that."

"It's only when you see the previous design that you realise that the new design is new, because it looks like a design that's always been there. It looks like what Carlsberg should always have been."

The rejuvenated Carlsberg brand is launching in Scandinavian markets this month and will be rolled out globally over the course of 2019.

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Kerrie Hughes
Freelance writer

Kerrie Hughes is a frequent contributor to Creative Bloq, and was once its editor. One of the original CB crew, Kerrie joined the team back in 2013 after moving from her role as staff writer on 3D World. Since then she's written regularly for other creative publications such as ImagineFX, Computer Arts and Digital Camera World. After a stint working for the police, Kerrie is back reviewing creative tech for creative professionals.