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LogoLounge 2 by Catharine Fishel, Bill Gardener

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Job no:82185(CTP) Title : RP-Logolounge 2 Client : Pro-vision
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When the petrol companies Total and Fina combined forces in 1999 and
then were joined by Elf in 2000, the triad created a formidable union. The
new company—which adopted the name TotalFinaElf in 2000, shortened
to just Total in 2003—could claim an amazing 14,700 stations around the
world. But despite its far-flung geographical presence, the new company
needed help with its identity.
None of the original companies had a brand identity that was worth sav-
ing, nor did the new management team want to maintain any of the former
identities. Elf’s original logo was somewhat contemporary but awkward.
Fina’s logo felt unremarkable and dated, whereas the old Total logo was
more powerful but still behind the times.
A & Company, Paris, was selected to create a logo for the new team and
its thousands of stations. Laurent Vincenti, design manager at A & Com-
pany, describes the design problem: “The main goals of the new identity
were to give a new brand image to the new group, reposition the group to
a new brand image with new value, and to give a sense of movement to the
identity that expresses the group’s mission to be a worldwide energy
provider. Total has always been concerned about its responsibilities to the
environment and to human beings.”
A & Company designers considered several distinct directions in their
early designs. Some trials explored the control of energy, whereas others
were more based on earth or energy imagery. But the direction that was
ultimately selected was one Vincenti calls “multi-energy,” symbolic not
only of the many ways the company served the consumer but also of the
new union.
Beyond technical commitments to reproduction issues, Vincenti believes
that to be successful, this and any other logo project must meet the fol-
lowing parameters:
• It must restore the image and the position of the brand for the consumer
that the company itself set as the strategic target.
• It must be appreciated by the maximum number of customers.
• It must deliver a big impact with its history. The more stories a brand can
tell, the more it is liked by consumers and is engraved into their memories.
• It must represent a global style that is easily translatable to the brand.
It must readily become a new flag for the company. Different mergers
of firms need to be able to regroup themselves around a common flag.
Total’s new logo meets these goals, Vincenti says. It is formed by three
intertwined and curving shapes that form a globe. Its colors were selected
Design Firm
Client
Project
A & Company
Total
Corporate Identity
The merger of three major European oil companies—Fina, Elf,
and Total—necessitated a new brand identity for the organiza-
tion, also named Total. Three curving, swooping lines form a
globe, representing the joining of the three companies but also
create an easily animated, three-dimensional form that works
equally well as flat art or a sculpture.
The logos of the three separate companies were dated and
uninspiring. The client did not ask A & Company to preserve any
of the aspects of these marks. Still, the new identity would have
to be something around which all employees worldwide—now
all on the same team—could rally.
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Job no:82185(CTP) Title : RP-Logolounge 2 Client : Pro-vision
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175 Size : 228.6(w)279.4(h)mm Co : M6 C0 O/P: CTP
Dept : DTP D/O : 27.08.04 (Job no:000000 D/O : 00.00.01 Co: CM0)
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The wordmark was designed to have enough personality to stand on its own when necessary,
without the logo.
The new logo is built from
three pieces: a light blue
swoop that represents air,
a dark blue curve that sym-
bolizes water, and a red
curve that represents Earth.
Together they form a syner-
gistic globe that speaks of
energy, the merging of cul-
tures, and cooperation.
Note how the logo can be
abstracted as an art or back-
ground element for collateral
designs.
LL2 044-055/M6 26/8/04 11:06 AM Page 51

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