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New whisky brand designed for young Russians

Pearlfisher design agency in London has created a new whisky brand for a newly-formed premium alcoholic beverages wholesaler, Lucky Spirits Ltd, which was set up by three Russian entrepreneurs earlier this year. Called The Gild, the whisky is targeted primarily at the Russian market.

The brand creation included strategy, brand identity, naming, brand language and tone of voice, structure and graphics.

Cognac and vodka are increasingly perceived as ‘old school’ with whisky increasingly being picked up by the young, social drinker in Russia. The growth in whisky consumption signifies its perception as different, progressive and Western, a trend illustrated by a new interest in London and its chic urban aesthetic.

Pearlfisher’s task was to create a contemporary and authentic challenger brand that would help make the world of whisky accessible to the Russian consumer.

The new whisky brand needed to be authentic, believable and Western – not explicitly Russian – but with a universal appeal to resonate with the target Russian consumer, while leaving further space for growth beyond Russia.

Rory Fegan, senior strategistat at Pearlfisher describes how the choice of name and on pack communication helps make the world of whisky appealing to the target Russian consumer: “The bottle states that the whisky is ‘conceived in London, born in Scotland’ to establish the Western heritage and desirable credentials that the primary Russian audience is seeking. The name refers back to the guilds of London - the masters and the craftsmen - but has a double meaning with ‘gild’ also referring to the gold standard.

Pearlfisher creative director, Sarah Cattle, adds: “The identity and graphics are bold and contemporary yet inspired by the letterpress, which reflects a level of craftsmanship, clarity and refinement. The blue dot can be seen as the stamp of the guild but, essentially, adds to the brand equity as a recognisable signpost and will act as a brand and marketing device as people learn to look for it. To complement this we have created an exciting and enticing back-of-pack story that can also be used as part of the brand’s wider marketing initiatives.”

Anton Plekhov of Lucky Spirits, comments: “We spotted a niche in the market to target the 18-25 year-old whisky drinker with a brand specifically designed to compliment their needs and lifestyle. The new brand and packaging challenges the category standards and creates a new language for the whisky market. We are very excited about this launch.”

4 September 2013 - Felicity Murray The Drinks Report, editor