Established in 1998, Stora Enso is a Finnish company based in Helsinki working in the packaging, paper and wood products industry. With 26,000 employees across 85 production facilities around the world, Stora Enso produces “1.8 million tons of paper and board, 1.3 billion square metres of corrugated packaging and 6.4 million cubic metres of sawn wood products” annually. For graphic designers, Stora Enso is a well-known brand as they have some very nice fine coated papers for printing, which were quite popular in the late 1990s and early 2000s, when using imported paper was fancy and doable. This month, Stora Enso has launched a “Rethink” campaign, a refreshed way of looking and acting and, along with it, is a new logo designed by Helsinki-based N2.
Our new logo symbolises Stora Enso’s commitment to creating a sustainable future for our planet by developing innovative solutions based on renewable materials. Its form is inspired by the petalless flower of the eucalyptus tree, one of the most efficient sources for pulp production. It also represents the self-contained cycles of nature and recycling, a circular saw blade used to cut wood, the large rolls of paper found in paper mills, and flipping sheets of high quality paper found in books.
— Logo Guidelines
The concept of a “cycle” and the formal inspiration of the eucalyptus flower are all perfectly fine and could have led to an interesting logo and perhaps an even more interesting identity but the result here is faux dynamism and nature. Despite the logo trying to look as if it’s going at 100 miles per hour, it is static. Despite the logo trying to look as if it’s organic and natural, it is a standard-issue computer logo. There is a heavyness to the logo that restricts it from achieving what the designers wanted. If it’s meant to be paper, that is like 300-pound weight. If it’s meant to be saw blades, that is going to be one blunt cut. Having “rethink.” stuck in the center doesn’t help either, and I hope it goes away eventually, because it looks uncomfortably tight there in the center. And the typography has nothing to do with the logo, with paper, or even a twenty-first century brand. If the name is “Stora [space] Enso” I find the upper-yet-lowercase “E” totally useless. In the previous logo, although it ate the space, at least it was clear there were two words. I’m probably coming down too hard on this logo, as it may not be that offensive, but it just hits too many notes the wrong way for me.