Rebrand for ADCB – a quick review

ADCB is the Abu Dhabi Commercial Bank and in November 2013, they launched a complete branding overhaul.

Whilst I’m far from being a branding expert (I’m an SEO expert in Dubai), I do have a fascination with brands and logos, in particular those in the Middle East as they encompass the local culture, both the English and Arabic language as well as modern designs.

I don’t bank with ADCB but I liked their rebrand so much, I thought I’d write about it.

This is the old ADCB logo:

old adcb logo

It has a very formal, commercial look to it and from my understanding of Abu Dhabi, the triangles are meant to represent the general shape of the city (or at least, the areas inhabited by most peple). I make this distinction as Abu Dhabi is an Emirate and essential is like a city-province (kind of like how Singapore is a city nation). The logo includes both English and Arabic and I think it looks quite bold and reaffirms its status as a business-centric, commercial bank.

This is the new ADCB logo:

new adcb logo

The acronym is rounded and the Arabic text is softer but more importantly, there is now only 1 triangle (with rounded edges) which is a darker shade of red (not quite maroon or burgundy from what I can tell but I’m not exactly sitting here with a colour swatch!). They have also cleverly included the bank’s name in Arabic within the triangle (with exception of the word “bank”). The triangle is also on a different angle than in the previous logo.

I really like this new look – certainly makes the brand more welcoming, even for a commercial bank but it’s got a modern touch that is very easy on the eye. I quite like the inclusion of Arabic in the triangle, in kufic font – it’s a subtle but significant nod to the local culture.

Another thing I noticed when driving past their many billboards on Sheikh Zayed Road is that they appear to be using embossing and indenting with their large format designs. I thought I was imagining this but I asked around a few other people noticed this as well. I wasn’t able to take snapshots of this but I did find out that an agency called Solve was responsible for this branding redesign. Check out the work they’ve done for ADCB including print, billboards, microsite and even wraps for buses on this page.

Good quality business printing usually involves some sort of embellishing or embossing so this is a subtle touch that really brings this whole rebrand together to tie in with ADCB’s renewed vision to be the best in all that they do.

The tagline that focuses on Money vs Ambition (“money can buy the land, but ambition turns it into a destination”) is fantastic and a great platform for which to launch the image for the brand.

Kudos to Solve on a job well done and all the best to ADCB in all of their future endeavours!