Home> Branding & Marketing> New owner, new logo – Smoothie King smoothes it out

New owner, new logo – Smoothie King smoothes it out

August 1st, 2013

You don’t have to be a fitness freak or health guru to realize that nutritional drinks are a hot trend right now. Energy drinks, protein shakes, lactose-free milk, power juices – nobody seems to drink plain water anymore!

While the health drink phenomenon has certainly taken an upward turn in terms of marketing and revenue in recent years, it all started more than half a century ago. As early as the 1960s, a man named Steve Kuhnau started to blend up his own concoctions of fruit, nutrients, and proteins in an effort to create satisfying nutrition that would not aggravate his own allergies and intolerances. These kitchen blender experiments ignited an entrepreneurial spark that eventually led to the opening of the first Smoothie King store in 1973.

Being one of the first pioneers of the ‘value-added drink’, Smoothie King was an instant success; it soon went national in the United States, then global. Today, there are more than 600 outlets across the US, Korea, Singapore and the Cayman Islands. But, in 2012, after almost 40 years at the helm, Kuhnau and his wife and business partner Cindy decided to retire to spend more time with their family. They sold the chain to Korean businessman Wan Kim who, incidentally, was franchise owner of the very first Korean Smoothie King outlet.

With the new owner comes a new vision. “Smoothie King is a company with well over 20 years of aggressive growth ahead of it, both in the US and globally,” said Kim. “We plan to open more than 1,000 new locations both in the United States and internationally by the end of 2017.” Alongside this expansion plan, Kim is also planning a major overhaul of the company’s branding to bring it into the modern arena. The old, recognizable, red and yellow Smoothie King logo (below left) has featured on its merchandise and marketing materials for more than 20 years, and it is set to change.

Arguably, the old design with its busy red, yellow and blue color palette, had a look and feel not too dissimilar from a well-known and similarly ‘royal’ sounding burger chain! Now, with its sleek font and shades of red, the new logo (right) has shaken off the unhealthy fast food connection and appears fresher, more modern; more in keeping with the simple, nutritious smoothie and juice recipes that the chain serves up every day. The crown logo, which no longer dots the ‘i’, but instead tops the design to form a major feature of the brand, now looks more fluid – almost like a splash of freshly blended berry juice – mmm!

About the Author:

Although her primary niche is in scientific writing and editing, freelance writer Lisa Martin is also a creative type with an eye for design. She regularly works alongside graphic designers and as such has a keen interest in the development of logos and branding.


Leave Your Comment

I personally like the new look. The old logo is practically unuseful. The little crown is too small an all this bevel effect makes it look very messy.

by PavelSeptember 04, 2013