Acela Energy Group

Norfolk, Massachusetts // A New Division

The Challenge

Branching out in big ways.

Brand architecture is the hierarchy of brands within a single company. It is important to bring consistency, visual and verbal order, thought, and intention to a brand’s parent company, its co-brands, and its products and services.

To support the Acela Energy Group’s growth initiatives, they were launching a new division called Acela Thermal Energy. We identified that the new brand required visual design, messaging, and landing pages / microsite development to build it into the existing brand architecture.

Co-branded business cards

The Strategy

With such clients as Four Seasons, Bank of America, Gillette Companies, and the Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority, Acela Energy Group has a renowned international reputation as an energy procurement consultant for federal and state authorities, healthcare organizations, universities, industrial, and corporate firms.

Introducing a new brand to an existing market can present a few strategic questions:

  • Will co-branding confuse consumers?
  • Should we ensure that the parent company is always visible in a secondary position?
  • How do we brand this new entity?

Having identified that the proposed name Acela Thermal Energy presented no trademark issues, we moved into visual design. We recommended a brandmark + logotype for the brand’s signature, selecting a visual language that corresponded to the parent brand.

Color was an important aspect of this design—in this case, a marriage of hot and cold for the two sides of the thermal energy services. To date, we have developed both horizontal and vertical signature types and co-branded business cards.

This project is underway and will be updated.