Universal Favourite 28 x15ventures

  • Pou Auaha / Creative Directors
    Dari Israelstam, Ali Ozden
  • Pou Rautaki / Strategic Leads
    James Needham (Untangld), Jamal Cassim (Untangld)
  • Ringatoi Matua / Design Director
    Mike Kirkpatrick
  • Kaituhi Matua / Copywriter Lead
    Cat Wall
  • Ngā Kaimahi / Team Members
    Jack Forrest, Laura Brown
  • Client

x15ventures is a venture scaler powered by CommBank. Sitting in the unique space between corporate and startup, they build, buy, and invest in startups that will benefit CommBank’s 15 million customers and beyond. They needed a flexible yet recognisable brand system that could match their dynamism with confidence.

Since experiencing substantial growth and solidifying a positive reputation in the industry, x15’s offering had surpassed their visual and verbal brand. It was poorly understood, inconsistently articulated and no longer an accurate reflection of the team behind the work. They reached out to us to help them pin down their brand strategy and find meaning in their identity, creating something that could inspire and empower their community.

x15ventures’ audience is vast. They not only need to appeal to founders of existing ventures but also, crucially, attract a team of talented employees from within both the startup and corporate arenas. Their positioning as a venture scaler, rather than fund or capitalist, plays a crucial role here. It was vital for the rebrand to hold a place of its own amongst a crowded and competitive  Australian venture landscape.

During our workshops with x15 and Untangld, it became clear that x15 sits at the brilliant collision of the corporate and startup worlds and the strategic idea needed to demonstrate that. We landed on “access advantage” — the idea that, with x15 beside you (as a venture, startup or staff member), you access the freedom to go full throttle and play your part in shaping the future of a generation. You access the opportunity to grow.

From here came our creative concept, “made to scale”, informed by the idea that x15 is here to help take things (ventures, careers) to the next level and allow them the space they need to move, expand and thrive. They’re a space where ideas and expertise collide to create big, impactful things, to push boundaries.

x15 helps people to expand their horizons, expand their potential and expand the opportunities they have, so at the heart of the system is a simple and distinctive asset — an expanding text box. It works across countless formats and can be both simple or expressive, dialled up or down to suit its context. It also played a crucial role in defining the motion principles that would direct how the brand moves, shifts and changes across different touchpoints.

We also created a system of patterns, shapes and wireframes, inspired by early NASA prototypes of the x15 rocket. These grids and symbols nod to the prototyping and testing conducted by a team in the process of creating a new venture. Again, these elements sing in motion, showcasing scale, collisions, collaboration and the dynamic working nature of the teams behind the brand. Our style of image treatment, made with millions of Xs, speaks to the 15 million customers that x15 serves. Intertwined with our dramatic, strong typographic system, you begin to see all the moving parts behind a brand that’s truly made to scale.