Greater London Enterprise began life in the 1980s as an agency of the GLC, with a brief to support small businesses in and around the Capital. When the GLC disbanded, GLE went independent, setting up as a public-private partnership. Over the next 30 years, they continued their work, helping companies find funding, building affordable office space on unconventional inner-city sites and delivering export and innovation advice on behalf of the Department for International Trade and Innovate UK.
In 2016, with a new CEO onboard, we were asked to help GLE kick-start the next stage in its evolution, by creating a unifying sense of identity and a national market positioning fit to drive an ambitious growth plan.
Social + commercial
When we started, GLE was a loose collection of independent business units. Most carried the company logo in some way but the brand had little meaning internally and low awareness in the marketplace.
We brought everyone from across the different teams and offices together in a series of workshops to talk about the future. Many felt there was no common thread but it quickly became clear that everyone was united by the same passion – to go beyond the call of duty for their customers. This dedication to social benefit as well as commercial success was the company’s driving force.
The heart of the economy
GLE described itself as an SME specialist, but that language didn’t do justice to the diversity of human stories and the value their customers’ businesses bring to the economy. We needed a new way to talk about customers that reflected GLE’s deeper understanding and commitment. Inspired by Germany’s ‘Mittelstand” we reframed small to medium enterprises as the “heart of the economy” – the source of both the pulse and the passion.
With business finance, export and innovation advice, digital services and property, GLE’s expertise is varied and wide ranging. While customers are always treated as unique and GLE’s advice and support is always tailored, we found that every relationship is underpinned by the same intent and every interaction brings the same benefit: an extra boost of confidence to help business leaders make their next move, whether that’s a leap or a step.
Ask anyone why they work at Newable and they’ll tell you two things: they love what they do and they want to make a difference in the world. A noble aspiration but also something that goes beyond just words.
Our role, working with business leaders at the heart of the economy, gives us an opportunity to make a real and lasting difference. The financial support we provide and guidance we give helps thousands of businesses every year but, for us, there’s something more.
For us, it’s the spark that happens in our customers’ minds when they get that support, guidance and encouragement. That boost of confidence that takes them to the next step or on to a major breakthrough.
And the best thing is, we know this confidence will keep on flowing, like a chain reaction – into their companies, into their people and working practices, out through their customers and suppliers into the heart of economy and beyond to the country at large.
By empowering business people at the heart of the economy to dream big, get going and keep improving we can all make a lasting difference in the world.
With the shift from London to a national focus, the acronym GLE was no longer very useful. The old name lacked charisma and impact and the client leadership team agreed the time was right to make a change.
We took the newly agreed purpose and belief and worked with employee groups to define the naming brief. We developed a master list of over 250 names and, following trademark and linguistic validation, we cut the set down to a long list of 35 and then to 5. Once the legal team had given their feedback, we worked with the CEO and senior leaders to agree which would be the new name.
We took the new name and the spirit of the brand positioning and developed a visual identity designed to create impact in the busy professional services marketplace, balancing Newable’s commercial knowhow with its big social conscience.
Bold type, honest photography and a bright colour palette set the tone, while a simple, solid underline sums up the confidence Newable brings. The line steps out from the logo to create pictograms, infographics and textures, helping to illustrate Newable’s growth stories.
We focused on customer stories to bring to life Newable’s range, expertise and spirit at launch. Start-ups, scale-ups and growing businesses, retailers, manufacturers, tech companies, charities, product specialists and professional services businesses – all taking the next step thanks to Newable’s confidence boost.
We interviewed over 50 customers, we made films, wrote content and created a full suite of launch materials – from website and brochures to stationery and comms templates.
With over 30 years experience working with businesses at the heart of the UK economy, we knew there'd be no better way of showcasing the spirit of the Newable brand than by hearing from their customers.
We made a plan, drafted some questions, grabbed our film crew and hit the road. We met 35 remarkable businesses in shops, offices and homes and we interviewed over 50 founders and owners: entrepreneurs, engineers, chefs, artists, baristas and a mermaid. They told of us about their journeys, their hard-won successes and the way Newable had given them a vital boost of confidence along the way.