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.

Covid brochure

The Response

In May 2020, the client approached us to design a brochure for his refrigeration-related products and services. They needed our help with not only design and layout, but also how to position the piece for the times we’re living in.

Acela Thermal targets large grocery stores and food service businesses to make their freezers and coolers more efficient. With anti-fog film installed, they can conserve energy and save money.

He and his partners also engineered a disinfectant solution for shopping carts, in direct response to COVID-19. Their product not only saves energy and money, but better protects consumers and employees.