How do you rebrand a 110-year old company?

Gerdau evolves brand and engages Schifino Lee to create advertising campaign.

In 1901, the American League declared itself a Major League, six South Pacific British colonies federated and called themselves Australia, and the company that is now called Gerdau was founded.

Besides celebrating their 110th anniversary this year, all three of these events have something else in common. They all involve a crucial aspect of branding: what do you call yourself and how do you communicate this to your audiences in a way that is relevant for them?

The AL was originally a minor league known as the Western League. Then, when marketing innovator Charles Comiskey joined forces with Commissioner Ban Johnson, they rebranded as the American League. Most importantly, the AL eventually became home to our beloved Tampa Bay Rays.

Tampa Bay is also the North American headquarters for Gerdau. Gerdau’s history began in 1901 as a small nail factory in Porto Alegre, Brazil, called Pontas de Paris. As part of its 110-year anniversary celebration, Gerdau is introducing a new brand and visual identity that positions the Company for continued growth. In addition, the long steel and special steel operations of Gerdau in North America, Gerdau Ameristeel and Gerdau Macsteel, will now be called Gerdau.

Gerdau selected Schifino Lee Advertising + Branding to communicate this initiative in North America. Schifino Lee’s experience with rebranding campaigns for major divisions of AT&T combined with their team’s creative expertise communicating at a local level for brands such as Enterprise Rent-A-Car and Wyndham Hotels made them the best choice.

Schifino Lee’s campaign for Gerdau is built on the idea that, though Gerdau’s name has changed, one thing has remained consistent: the company and its people are committed to the communities it serves. Full-page print ads are running in over a dozen publications nationally.

Fledgling baseball leagues aspiring to be bigger. Former colonies getting together to become a continent. And one of the world’s most successful steel companies reaffirming their commitment to communities across America. It all really does go back to branding.

Schifino Lee

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