First established in 1981, Batelco (short for Bahrain Telecommunications Company), has grown to be the biggest provider of internet, mobile and telephone services in Bahrain, partly because until recently it was a monopoly, but now that two more mobile competitors are in place, Batelco needed to update its identity. Originally designed by Landor in 2003, the new identity has been designed by Futurebrand.
Our logo symbolises this bold direction by evoking the idea of what you can “be” with Batelco. Our new identity celebrates Batelco as a Bahraini icon, linking us in colour and with the letter B to our country. The bilingual logo, which reads as both an English and Arabic letter B, also resembles an infinity sign, further communicating Batelco’s omnipresence throughout Bahrain.
— Futurebrand Project Description
English and Arabic (read right to left) versions of the logo.
The previous logo was remarkably dull and generic — but given that Batelco is owned by three Government agencies, it somehow seemed appropriate — and would have been impossible to convert into an exciting consumer brand. The new logo, in contrast, is remarkably strong and memorable. The “B” icon is simple and elegant and looks great big or small (perhaps it’s a little too big in the lock-up, but that’s a minor complaint). The infinity concept is good even if the execution strays a little from what we would all recognize as an infinity symbol, but the effort in making the icon look like a Latin and Arabic “B” (it’s just the lower u-shaped part with the dot) is really nice. The wordmark verges on appropriate and weird, with the “e” and “c” standing out like sore, square thumbs against the other characters which have curved corners… I guess it could be worse. The applications, from web site to signage, feel stylish and trendy without going overboard. A pretty great update, even by infinity standards.
Launch event of new brand.
Thanks to Yotam Hadar for first tip.