PRO14, the professional rugby union league of top clubs from Ireland, Scotland, Wales, Italy and South Africa, has been renamed the United Rugby Championship. By revamping its format and adding more teams, it aims to increase its audience and create a world-class sports and entertainment brand.
The League turned to the Thisaway design agency to design its new look and feel. Thisaway was tasked with developing a brand that had the confidence to stand out in the world of sports and entertainment, while also giving it a sense of authority as the league’s governing body.
To get a clear understanding of the brand as a whole, Thisaway spoke to the five countries represented in the league, who are also shareholders, and realized that it was the diversity of the teams that set it apart from any other league in the league. the world. With this in mind, the agency has developed the positioning of the “A Different League” brand, a declaration of intent unlike any other rugby competition.
The positioning aims to strengthen the diversity of teams and supporters within the league and defines an ambitious challenger mindset for the global brand so that it is bold and different from other rugby brands.
The new name had to reflect the brand’s positioning and stand the test of time to allow the league to develop even further at a later date. This meant that the use of the number in the name (eg PRO16) was not an option. The new name aims to have gravity, which is easily shortened and has the potential to work well in future business discussions.
The new name is meant to speak to the idea of a unified, non-uniform league; a place where different teams, clubs and supporters come together in one league to celebrate rugby and move the game forward.
The brand positioning is embodied by the new logo, a graphic monogram using the letters U, R and C which was designed to work with the team crests rather than fighting with them. The shield-like nature of the logo communicates the “united” aspect of the new name by having the ability to split into two parts to reveal the type, club crests and other brand assets, before being released. unite to form its solid state.
To reflect the tribal one-on-one of the various teams competing on the pitch, Thisaway created designs loosely based on the team’s crests and colors, with the aim of making them more festive than aggressive.
“The interaction and management by Thisaway of the respective stakeholders involved in our league was first class. They used this insight and insight to develop a positioning and identity that we hope will be a game-changer for rugby, ”said Tom Lister, Director of Marketing at United Rugby Championship.