Posted on January 23, 2014

Evolution of the Philips logo

By Neale Gilhooley, Evolution Design.

Philips-Evolution1-202x1024We have covered the difference between Brand Evolution and Revolution previously, here is the story of a brand that many of us have grown up with, so familiar that we probably don’t even give it a second glance. But is is a very interesting story and a good read and there is a lot more information on the Philips corporate website including many old logo versions, Philips company history of the brand marque with a few examples of which are also shown below.  The Philips brand is a familiar sight in many millions of households and buildings throughout the world, with its instantly recognisable wordmark of seven blue capitalized letters and the shield emblem with its stars and waves. Over more than 120 years Philips has evolved and grown, becoming a leading, highly trusted brand in markets all over the world. In that time the visual identity over the company has remained true to its legacy, rooted in its early years at the beginning of the 20th century.

The now familiar Philips waves and stars first appeared in 1926 on the packaging of radio valves, as well as on an early sound recording device. The waves symbolised radio waves, while the stars represented the ether of the evening sky through which the radio waves would travel. In due course, these two elements were placed in a circle, symbolising the globe.  For the first time in 1930’s, the four stars flanking the three waves were placed together in a circle. After that, the stars and waves started appearing on radios and gramophones, featuring the circle as part of their design. Since then, this trademark has been used across the world and has become one of the identifiers of the Philips Company as the single source of Philips-branded products. In 1938, the Philips shield made its first appearance. Although modified over the years, the basic design has remained constant ever since and, together with the wordmark, it gives Philips the distinctive identity that is still embraced today.

The brand comes in at No. 40 in Best Global Brands by Interbrand 2015 and scores a 71 in The


World’s Most Valuable Brands 2015 by Forbes magazine in 2015. The cash value of the brand has been estimated as $9,813m up +8%. Philips is an example of a brand committed to aligning its business priorities with its brand strategy. The brand continues to drive operational excellence, increased speed to market, and decreased innovation turnaround time while making the brand more responsive to customer needs. Leadership is focusing on the brand itself as a unique strength of its business system, aligning strategy with a mission to deliver meaningful innovation to customers. A great example of brand evolution.