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BRANDING NEWS: Williams F1 accelerates sponsorship drive

The Williams F1 team has overhauled its identity in a bid to rejuvenate the brand and broaden its appeal to major sponsors.

The rebrand, which includes a new logo and trackside branding, was launched on 2 February at the F1 team's track and headquarters in Oxfordshire, and comes in time for the first F1 race in the World Championship calendar – the Australian Grand Prix on 18 March. Current sponsors include Reuters, RBS, Lenovo and AT&T.

Brand consultancy, UffindellWest, was responsible for the new look, which draws on the, “engineering heritage of the team, its pure racing agenda and the Williams name, creating an instantly recognisable iconic identity that presents Williams F1 as a world class team,” according to Gary Black, creative director at the agency.

“Up until now, the rebranding has generated a lot of interest, although it is early days and hard to say just how successful it has been,” says Black. However, he adds that in the latter days of the brand development process, laptop manufacturer Lenovo and telecoms company AT&T both signed sponsorship deals with Williams F1.

“Williams is constantly looking for new sponsors as this is its main source of income to plough back in to the team in order to keep it going,” adds Black. “We worked with them to better position the team for the corporate market – to give them space and develop a very unique positioning based on their purist approach to racing that would serve to tap into their key target audience going forward.”

According to Scott Garrett, head of marketing at Williams F1, the brand was looking to refresh its image so that major sponsors would be “proud to associate with it.” He adds, “The need to stay ahead in this game is paramount, but we feel that we now have a really compelling proposition to enable us to do that.”


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