Instruct Studio’s co-op renaming aims to help create a fairer society


With co-ops – a business or organization owned and controlled by its members – worth a collective £39.7 billion to the UK economy, the benefit of being part of them speaks for itself. To publicize their benefits, the Voice of Co-operatives has enlisted design studio Instruct to bring a fresh perspective on how co-operatives are communicated while aligning with the new strategic objective.

As part of the rebrand, Instruct included a nod to the collaborative and pioneering spirit of the co-op movement itself. Originally found in Rochdale before spreading around the world, Co-operatives has a rich history and images to build on, and Instruct has done just that. The new look is a blend of heritage with a modern twist, as the international co-operative branding is placed close to the new Co-Operatives UK logo.

In addition to this, the new brand offers an extensive toolbox of badges and shapes related to the new strategic objectives of cooperatives. The organization’s internal team will adopt this iconography in animations to maintain the consistency of its message and its appearance on all platforms.

The retailers that make up the Co-op group, including Midcounties Co-operative and Scotmid Co-op, have all expressed support for the brand refresh and are eager to discuss how they can use it to improve consumer perception at the next Co-op Retail Conference, which takes place this month.

Instruct Creative Director John Owens said, “It’s been a fascinating journey to understand the challenges of how we communicate beyond movement, and with this new look we can reach new audiences and engage much better with those that already exist. »

“We supported the refinement of the strategy, and it became clear that a key distinction needed to be made between Co-operatives UK as an organization and the wider co-operative movement. At the same time talks were taking place with the titular international brand dotCoop, and we all had a little light bulb moment, which led to the use of the international brand as a badge alongside the new logo.”

Meanwhile, Co-operatives UK CEO Rose Marley said: “Our exciting new strategy focuses on empowering young people, activating technology and digital, driving a new era of cooperation, embedding cooperative values ​​and principles in all businesses and inspiring communities to grow the cooperative economy. These five themes will permeate everything we do over the next three years.

“We know the impact of cooperatives in transforming communities and people’s lives, but the business model is not widely shared. Our challenge is to define simple language and tell inspiring stories so that co-operatives become part of the national consciousness. We invite the 7,000 co-operatives in the UK to join us in this mission.”


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