Established in 2013 in London, UK, Deliveroo is a delivery service working with restaurant chains and independent restaurants to bring their food to your home or office via drivers, most of them on bicycles. The name, as explained in their FAQ: “Kangaroos are known to be incredibly protective of their young. At Deliveroo we are equally protective of your dining experience.” From its initial offering in London, Deliveroo is now available throughout the UK, the Netherlands, France, Germany, Belgium, Ireland, Spain, Italy, Australia, Singapore, Dubai, and Hong Kong. Last week, the company introduced a new logo and identity designed by London and San Francisco, CA-based DesignStudio.
As part of the new brand we developed an extensive colour palette - from warm to fresh, and rich to neutral, it flexes from incredibly expressive to premium subtlety. The typography, illustration and the Roo mark all work harmoniously together, creating a distinctive graphic language. We defined tone of voice principles for Deliveroo to communicate its spirit, vibrancy and energy.
What we landed on was an evolution from our original and more literal take on the kangaroo, turning it into a striking new mark bold and impactful, but still maintaining the character and charm of the Roo. Importantly, this new Roo gave us a series of angles that would help the rest of our graphic system take shape. A system that would run across everything, from our site to our rider kit.
The old logo was very literal with a kangaroo holding a delivery bag and while it very clearly represented what the company did it lacked in execution and inventiveness (although, yeah, a kangaroo delivering a bag of food is fairly inventive to begin with). The new logo is quite the opposite by being overly ambiguous — not even the depiction of the kangaroo is obvious — but now that the Deliveroo name and service have built some equity they can start to take that leap of faith that the name will be enough to carry the premise of the business. I really like the new icon because it’s not an instant giveaway — you have to use a little bit of brainpower to make the connection between the shape of the icon, the name of the company, and that “roo” is short for “kangaroo”. Some clients might think that’s one too many steps of association and would opt for a more instant telegraphic logo, so it’s nice to see a client take a leap of faith.
The shape of the kangaroo is quirky, bold, and despite having literally no expression it has a kind of permanent engagement status. (It also has a bit of deer-in-headlights look which is not ideal given that drivers are constantly facing traffic to get you your food.) The wordmark is a VERY welcome respite from the traditional geometric sans serif by having a few eccentricities… mainly the rotated counterspaces in the “d” and “o”s, where the thinnest part of the letters is on the sides instead of top and bottom. It’s enough to make (at least a designer) take notice and see something slightly out of the ordinary. Also, the construction graphic of the icon is one of the few pleasurable ones I’ve seen recently, where the angles are all divisible by 6, the corners are all at 90 degrees, and those eyes’s alignment game is strong. The angles of the icon also inform the rest of the applications, so it’s relevant to point them out in said graphic.
The main application of the brand is on the drivers’ jerseys as they become the most common ambassador for the company, just like a FedEx or UPS truck. The color combinations are great both for the safety of the drivers and for their ability to be deploy the brand’s color palette throughout the city. The 1980s pattern on the side adds a fun touch of whimsy.
There is a cool aesthetic developing in the illustrations, like 1980s clip-art mixed with emojis but, for now, it doesn’t seem to be playing a large role in the implementation whereas the close-up photos of the food are much more evident. It’s understandable that they want to scream “Yummy Food!” but the website and event social media accounts start to feel more like food magazine or an actual restaurant. No doubt, the photos are great but when used as the hero of the ads above — and paired with that specific copywriting — it’s so much more about the food than it is about the service that maybe starts to place too much weight on the name alone to convey what these ads are about. Nonetheless, it’s a very graphically pleasing identity that even in its simplicity offers a few bursts of surprises and elevates Deliveroo above start-up level.