Mastercard rolls out new logo with no let­ters

USA TODAY International Edition - - FRONT PAGE - Mike Snider

No more words. That’s the strat­egy credit card com­pany Mastercard is tak­ing with its logo.

In a move to make the Mastercard trade­marked red and yel­low cir­cles even more iconic, the sym­bol will be used with­out the word “Mastercard” in­serted or ac­com­pa­ny­ing it, the com­pany says.

Word­less ver­sions of the Mastercard sym­bol will now be used on credit cards, at re­tail and in other spon­sor­ship uses. “Rein­ven­tion in the dig­i­tal age calls for mod­ern sim­plic­ity,” Mastercard’s chief mar­ket­ing and com­mu­ni­ca­tion officer Raja Ra­ja­man­nar said in a state­ment.

Al­ready, 80 per­cent of peo­ple rec­og­nize the com­pany’s sym­bol with­out words, he said. “We felt ready to take this next step in our brand evo­lu­tion,” Ra­ja­man­nar said. “We are proud of our rich brand her­itage and are ex­cited to see the iconic cir­cles stand­ing on their own.”

The com­pany, founded as In­ter­bank Card As­so­ci­a­tion in 1966, be­gan us­ing the in­ter­lock­ing cir­cles more than 50 years ago. “We live in a time where, in­creas­ingly, we com­mu­ni­cate not through words but through icons and sym­bols,” Michael Bierut, part­ner at de­sign con­sult­ing firm Pen­ta­gram, said in a state­ment.

“Now, by al­low­ing this sym­bol to shine on its own, Mastercard en­ters an elite cadre of brands that are rep­re­sented,” Bierut said, “not by name, but by sym­bol: an ap­ple, a tar­get, a swoosh.”

Mastercard’s new word­less logo is eas­ily rec­og­nized by a ma­jor­ity of con­sumers.

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