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Branding a venture capital firm that’s firmly focused on the future

Our San Francisco roots position us to know Silicon Valley front and back. Whether we’re helping startups secure Series A funding or reinventing brands for former unicorns, we understand how important branding is to standing out in an often saturated marketplace. We put ourselves in the shoes of entrepreneurs and company founders to help build a new brand for Lightspeed—a top-tier venture capital firm that has backed hundreds of companies in the past two decades, including some significant recent IPO’s.

“As a firm, we look to partner with visionary company founders with big ideas that have the power to shape culture—and our search for a creative partner was no different. We chose Butchershop because of their strategic expertise and deep understanding of our business and our audience,” said Meredith Kendall, Lightspeed’s VP of Marketing.

Lightspeed is known for investing in trailblazing companies like Snap Inc., The Honest Company, and AppDynamics, but the firm’s old brand identity didn’t reflect its status as a top-tier firm or differentiate it from the other VC’s in Silicon Valley. Their previous website was noticeably unrefined and outdated with boxy formatting, lackluster photography, and dull colors. It was screaming for a redesign, but it also needed to be a true resource for company founders looking to learn more about their potential VC partners, and help Lightspeed put their best foot forward to reflect their leadership position in the VC space.

After interviewing several company founders and entrepreneurs about the process of selecting a VC partner, we learned that the biggest challenge was how competitive and transactional the relationships had become. Founders don’t just want a check—they want a true partner who’s supportive and can help grow their businesses—which is part of Lightspeed’s huge success as a company and culture makers.

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“Butchershop recognized that in order to differentiate from other VC’s in the market, we needed a brand that embodied the core value we provide to our founders,” Kendall added. “Our new positioning is grounded in Lightspeed’s belief that we are true partners in supporting these companies to shape the future.”

We brought this sentiment to life through a developed brand positioning, grounded in the idea that venture investment is not just a business, but a craft. Part art and part science. As much EQ as IQ. The work of many hands and minds, not just one person.

From this idea, we transformed the brand’s identity into a bold, editorial, and iconic approach that captured the joy of the work and the dedication to the craft. The design system was conceived to feel sturdy and iconic, with clean simplicity and deliberate moments of juxtaposition that creates interest through open space and thoughtful layers. Combine that with a bold color palette and approachable photography of the partners, and it emphasizes the editorial approach we took to showcase the effort of mind and labor of heart that defines Lightspeed.

Through the look, feel, and voice, we elevated the Lightspeed brand to match their top-tier reputation and the caliber of companies they support. Ultimately, we were able to highlight Lightspeed’s legacy, while still being firmly focused on the future and the visionary founders who are defining it.

Take a spin around.

Published:

Spring 2017