4 minute read
Today we revealed the new Solarisbank brand to the world. I would like to take you along behind the scenes to explain what our motivation was behind rebranding Solarisbank from head to toe.
Our original brand first saw the light of day in 2016. Back then, we were a small team with big ambitions. With wind in our sails after receiving our full German banking license, we stormed onto the scene with the aim of becoming the centre of the fintech ecosystem, a platform upon which all other fintechs could build their businesses. To reflect this role, we chose the sun as the key element of our brand, the nucleus of the financial solar system that attracts others and empowers them.
The original Solarisbank logo, first released in 2016
Our original brand has served us well over the years, and harbors many cherished memories. Today, however, Solarisbank is not the same company it was back then. Our team has grown from a handful of developers, entrepreneurs and bankers to over 300 Solarians from over 50 different nationalities. Our product palette has broadened and become more sophisticated. From accounts, cards and lending to KYC and digital asset services, we added more and more products and features to our platform, always pushing the boundaries of what it means to be bank. We are on the way to host all of our banking services on AWS and even built a whole new core banking system to reach a new level of automation and scalability on our platform.
Most notably, however, the type of partners we work with has evolved considerably. Where in the early days, Solarisbank was a platform intended for fintechs looking for a regulated banking partner, we have now developed into the designated technology platform for any type of business that wants to offer digital financial services.
With the rising number of partners that put their trust into our services, the size of these partners also grew. With international behemoths like American Express joining our platform, we felt like it was the right time to elevate our brand to the next level. Its design and positioning no longer reflected our maturity and ambitions for the future. Last week’s announcement of our series-C funding round of EUR 60 million at a EUR 320 million valuation marked the final milestone of our transition from the impetuous start-up trying to prove its raison d’ètre, to a tech company trusted by innovators from a vast range of industries. We had proven our belief that, through Banking-as-a-Service, any company could become a fintech company.
Our original brand identity, anchored in the idea of the solar system, did not fully embody our partner-focused mindset. In fact, it was quite literally self-centered. We knew our new brand should reflect our attitude of always focusing on our partners rather than ourselves. However, we also knew that our Solarians were very attached to our original brand. So, through a series of interviews and workshops, we established how the Solarians perceive their company. We crystallized what we see as our key characteristics and what makes us unique. Based on this fundament we experimented with different design avenues to find a visual identity that conveys our maturity as a company.
A cornerstone of every brand’s visual identity is its logo. We wanted to modernize and mature the logo without losing its essence. Our ambition as Solarisbank is to take the complexities of banking away from our partners to allow them to focus on what’s important to them. We reflect this idea in our new logo by reducing it to its most simple and pure form.
The relationship between us and our partners is built on trust. Not only in terms of security, but also in terms of quality. We want to continue to grow with our partners on this foundation and tried to embody this in our logo design. By isolating the image mark and using it as a standalone icon, it resembles a seal of trust that our partners can rely on, echoing the use of seals by banks of old when signing their documents. Wherever it stands, it bears our promise of excellence and integrity; an acknowledgement of the responsibility we hold as a licensed bank.
Simultaneously, it retains the heritage of the original logo. The universal imagery of the sun continues to represent an empowering force that helps our partners to flourish, while the symbiotic fusion of two equal parts coming together signifies the strength of partnership. The signature Solarisbank orange harks back to our origins, retaining the recognizable, confident and optimistic character that the old Solarisbank brand had established.
We wanted the large variety of partners that we address to feel empowered and inspired by our offering, not puzzled or overwhelmed. So, in tandem with the simplification of our Logo, we also decluttered our overall look and feel. We opted for a brighter and lighter visual language, leaving room for new ideas and acting as a canvas for our partners to tell their story on. We introduced a new colour palette with warmer and softer tones, lending a more human and approachable touch to the brand, which its predecessor had lacked.
In addition, we developed an expressive illustration style that breathes life into our brand by showing how the technology we create is not anonymous, but touches the lives of people in meaningful ways. With its dynamic, care-free figures and bright surroundings, it allows you to imagine all the possibilities that Solarisbank can create with its partners. We also incorporated distinctive, light-flooded photography into the brand, allowing us to show the people behind our technology.
We perceive our brand a little like a living organism. It is does not stay static, but instead develops by feeding off of the growth of the people behind the brand. That’s why we wanted to make the big reveal of our brand to our Solarians an immersive experience. We wanted everyone at Solarisbank to enjoy interacting with the brand and carry it outwards as proud ambassadors. In times of COVID-19, however, we could not bring everyone into the office to experience the new brand together. So instead, we brought the new brand to them. We sent a brand package to every Solarian with some secret goodies inside and some of them shared their reactions to our new brand with us. We compiled them for you here: