frog rebuilt and revived the VillaWare brand from the ground up while producing a full line of kitchen appliances for the European market.
VillaWare is a name that has been in existence for almost a century, but dormant until acquired by Jarden Consumer Solutions. They wanted to revive VillaWare with a new product line and brand position for the European market. frog worked with them to understand the European market, create a suite of small kitchen appliances, and to define an opportunity for the brand that would place it well against more familiar competitors. The resulting products have a striking identity that is distinctly different from others on the market with bold shapes that are at once approachable, strong, traditional and modern.
A Clean Sheet
It’s not often that you get to rebuild a brand and a whole product line from the ground up. In this case, Jarden wanted to introduce a broad range of products under the VillaWare name, including an espresso maker, coffee machine, food processor, blender and juicer. These would be positioned as upper middle-tier products – giving the feel and quality of premium brands but at a more affordable price.
Jarden is an American company, so the first job for frog was to gain an in-depth of understanding of the European target customer—how they cook, what their kitchens are like, what food means to them, and how they perceive existing brands. We approached this research looking at the products and the brand simultaneously, so the in-home interviews informed both aspects of the work.
VillaWare was up against some stiff competition from established brands like Bosch and Krups, and upcoming
ones like Breville. The frog team bought, used, and tore apart existing products to see what makes them tick, and analyzed the design languages (shapes and surfaces, materials, interfaces, etc.). These findings were used to inform several rounds of concepts to refine the new design language for VillaWare.
Defining the Brand
At the same time, we analyzed competitors’ brands to identify ways in which VillaWare could differentiate itself, and connect authentically with customers.
We created a comprehensive new brand identity for VillaWare to bring it up to date and make it stand out in a crowded market. This included creating an essence and positioning, a value proposition, new identity and logo, and packaging concepts for the new products.
User testing in multiple European countries was used to simultaneously evaluate both the product designs and the brand messages. This made the process more efficient, and ensured that the products and identity were kept in step with one another, and findings from one could inform the other.
Following the successful launch of VillaWare in Europe, Jarden is now investigating bringing the products to the US market.