(No website available) “The Brand Bhutan initiative is part of export development strategy initiated by the Department of Trade, Ministry of Economic Affairs. It is one of the key strategies to harness economic opportunities and build productive capacity. The importance and the need of Brand Bhutan is well articulated in the Economic Development Policy, 2010. With Bhutan’s gradual integration into the global economic fabric, trade has become increasingly significant for overall socio-economic development of Bhutan. Increasing youth unemployment in the country and growing gap between rich and poor has made trade even more important as a key instrument in addressing such national issues. Over the years, trade has transformed significantly from an inward looking policy to a more liberal and investment friendly regime. It will continue to expand and grow further with more and more bilateral, regional and multilateral trading agreements being signed. In order to keep pace with all these developments, and the urgency for the need to boost our export, promote tourism and inward investment for the economic progress of the country makes it clear the relevance and timely introduction of Brand Bhutan.”
FutureBrand (Singapore, Australia, and Hong Kong offices)
Ultimately, FutureBrand’s immersion and analysis uncovered the need for Bhutan to first define what value ‘Bhutan’ the country brings to the market before it is possible to define the value of ‘Made In’ Bhutan. Consequently, we set out to define the strategy and identity for the Bhutan country brand to communicate the competitive difference it offers to the world. Building upon these insights, FutureBrand created one unified and overarching country brand for Bhutan, which is broad enough to be leveraged across all sectors and industries in the future – particularly for sectors that support Bhutan’s sustainable and long-term growth plans such as handicrafts, organic farming and clean energy.
Using the newly articulated brand strategy as the platform for creative exploration and inspiration, FutureBrand designed Brand Bhutan to amplify the ethos of Gross National Happiness, and capture the spirit of the country, its people and way of life. From the vibrant colours of the prayer flags to the spiritual patterns and symbolism of the country’s handmade treasures – everything crafted for Brand Bhutan comes from the country’s pristine nature, timeless traditions and enduring values.
I'm not very familiar with Bhutan so any references I have (or make) will be very superficial. What I can tell, as an overview, is that this does seem more like it would fit Bhutan than, say, Argentina. The colors feel right and the patterns feel like they would belong. The wordmark is a bit generic but, to be honest, I don't know what something more specific would look like or what it would have to represent. As a graphic device, it's an okay design and the angled crossbars provide just enough distinction to pass as a representative country logo. One important thing to consider is that this is not a tourism logo but an economic development logo and will be used more in a business-to-business manner. The yellow and red colors come from Bhutan's flag and look good on the wordmark. All of the applications are prototypes so they are hard to judge too seriously. Some things are better than others, like the tote bags and brochures being better than the potential products (these try to go for a minimalist trend but haven't received a more rigorous design process to refine it and those illustrations kill it for me). Overall, it makes a good impression but could use some refinement in application.
Plans are in development for coming back to Europe in Spring of 2018 with the current top contender host city of Barcelona.