In conceptualising its new logo, Elizade successfully combined the spatial relationships and certain aspects of the Chinese Feng Shui philosophy to produce a compact, bold and striking identity. Raheem Akingbolu reports
In the introduction to the well written book; “The Breakaway Brand: How Great Brands Stand Out,” by Francis Kelly III and Barry Silverstein, Ed Eskandarian listed out three key reasons why brands stand out. In the first reason cited, he said for most breakaway brands, they base their success on unique characteristics which may include superior performance, unique positioning, physical environment, unique packaging and distribution.
The second reason Eskandarian listed is advertising which he said can “significantly contribute to the success of a breakaway brand and on occasion, advertising can in and of itself create a breakaway brand.” His third reason is that “behind every breakaway brand is a team working toward a common goal- and a champion leading the team. Typically, you’ll find that the team is comprised of internal marketing staff… along with numerous people from the marketer’s ad agency. It is the close working partnership between the marketer and agency- the respect they have for each other, the relationship the share, the passion they have for the brand-that creates the “magic.”
The passion to create this “magic” is exactly what Elizade University (EU) Ilara-Mokan, Ondo State, one of the leading universities in the country is doing. As the world grapples with the unique and constant change that is the hallmark of the 21st century, EUis poised to not only confront, but surmount the challenges. The new identity was unveiled to a select audience of corporate icons, University dons and media executives.The unveiling will serve as a springboard for the provision of cutting edge educational services.
Pro-Chancellor of Elizade University and President of the Nigerian Stock Exchange, Mr. Aigboje Aig-Imoukhuede who shed light on the new identity said in designing the new logo, the varsity combined the spatial relationships and certain aspects of the Chinese Feng Shui philosophy that has a bent for harmony and balance, to produce a compact, bold, easily recognizable and striking identity.
This, he pointed out, is a fusion of the letters ‘E’ and ‘U,’ with an icon which is a combination of the torch handle carrying the tip of a golden fountain pen. “We call it the knowledge symbol. The “Torch Handle” gives the base to the golden fountain pen head, which symbolises the high worth and value of a top-quality pen as well as the depth of diligent craftsmanship and painstaking attention that goes into the fashioning it.”
The “Pen Head,” on the other hand, represents the light of knowledge that shoots forth from the torch handle. Aesthetically, it also showcases the high worth & value of a top quality pen, just as it emphasises the depth of its diligent craftsmanship, and the painstaking attention that has gone into fashioning it.
“This,” Aig-Imoukhuede stated, “captures the essence of the university, which is, to teach every Elizade University student to the point of unimpeachable competence and graduation, as well as, having them ready for the demands of the real world. It is instructive to note that, this wholesome tutelage structure is a prime and non-negotiable requirement for speedy national development, especially at this stage of our country’s existence.”
He added that this is representative of what the university does to each and every Elizade University graduate, to set them on the right footings to confront and surmount the unique challenges of the 21st century. In achieving this, the institution has at the back of its mind the much needed requirement for national development at this stage that Nigeria is bent on diversifying its economy.
Aig-Imoukhuede stressed that the new identity is an invitation into a world of superior knowledge laden with world class standard. “We have used the colour Blue to symbolise authority, maturity, responsibility and Stability, all features of EU. This gives strong visual, recognition and recall value for the brand identity. Gold is seen on the pen nib, and symbolises vibrancy and zest, both features of youth and vibrancy.
Reason for rebranding
On why EU is rebranding, stated that the logo is a most fitting expression of an ideal academic brand that is bent on stamping its feet on the sands of time as it communicates the qualities that make the university unique and one of a kind. “With a mix and match of colours and logo elements that hold deep meaning and symbolism, the new Elizade University logo showcases the high worth and value of a top-notch university in Nigeria, as it emphasises the depth of the University’s commitment and painstaking attention to producing a well-rounded graduate, ready for the global market.”
It should be pointed out that building and communicating a strong brand is fundamental to Elizade University’s long-term growth and viability. The varsity is bent on maintaining the great exposure and recognition as a prestigious and highly innovative institution that it has built since inception. This is even more evident in an era of rapid and consistent change that charactarises the 21stcentury. To this end, Elizade University’s desired position as a forward thinker in the educational industry would be maintained.
Aig-Imoukhuede also extolled quality ingredients of excellence assembled by the management of Elizade University. He identified passionately with the vision of the founder, which is to create a world class university than can compete in all areas with top universities like Harvard, Oxford, Yale etc. Aig-Imoukhuede speaks further: “One of the things great universities are known for is their larger-than-life image. This is why you find people buy and proudly wear T-shirts of such schools across the globe. Many are ready to defend the school and identify as alumnus years after their exit. They last almost for eternity.”
Earlier, the founder and Visitor to the university, Chief Ade Ojo, explained that the new logo is a step towards actualising his vision of creating a world class institution of higher learning, dedicated to the pursuit of academic and moral excellence. In the words of the erudite philanthropist, “we are unveiling this new identity to herald a new dawn in the life of our great institution established for the growth of knowledge, character as well as the total development of mankind. The new identity reflects the resolve of the university to breed young men and women who will break new grounds in all areas of human endeavours in accordance with global best practices”. He also appreciated specially, the National Universities Commission for their support in the approval process of the new logo.
The acting Vice Chancellor, Prof. Theophilus Fadayomi spoke ardently as a man who carries the founder’s vision with great passion. He traced the university’s records from 2013, when it started with 13 programmes till date with a total of 31 fully accredited academic programmes in their kitty. Also, Students enrolment according to Fadayomi has grown from 64 in 2013 to a total of 1,144 this year.