Renowned Typography Foundry Morisawa USA Launches ZeBrand for Early-Stage Startups and Small Businesses

Morisawa USA, one of the world’s most prestigious type foundries has launchedZeBrand, a service focused on helping early-stage companies create brand toolkits with as little effort as possible.

“For most startups and small businesses, the primary focus is developing products and services and building their client base, which leaves little time and fewer resources to focus on developing their brand identity,” says Chief Innovation Director Ryo Kikuchi.

“What we’ve created is an easy-to-use offering that allows them to differentiate from their competition and reflect their brand DNA.”

According to ZeBrand, establishing a cohesive brand identity during the early stages of a business helps a company gain internal clarity as well as external credibility before launching to the public and the free service will allow startups to quickly formulate the basics of a brand that they need to get started, allowing them less time for worrying and more time to focus on building their products and services.

Ease of Use

While logo design services have been available online for years, ZeBrand has created a more comprehensive, deeper-dive solution that goes beyond current web-based offerings that simply choose fonts, shapes and colors based on the input of a brand name and tagline.

By asking users just a few questions, ZeBrand’s proprietary algorithm suggests an optimum set of brand elements such as design layout, color, and typography. This is then consolidated into a unique brand toolkit, a powerful tool that allows for creating visual cohesion, alignment amongst team members, and brand consistency within all aspects of the startup.

“With ZeBrand we bring clarity to their brand by decoding their vision, visualizing and organizing assets, and delivering it all in a package so that teams are immediately aligned to hit the ground running,” says Kikuchi.

The algorithmic approach to creating good, basic brands for early-stage businesses focuses on five key elements that reflect and visualize the company’s identity: Vision, Core Values, Logo, Color, and Typography.

Additionally, the service will focus not only on design visualization but also on improving an organization’s internal.

For its initial release, ZeBrand will support a limited range of branding capabilities but will add additional features offering support for the ongoing growth of the brand.

Entrepreneurs, designers, and anyone interested in branding will have a chance to meet with the creators of ZeBrand from March 10-13 at SXSW in Austin, Texas. ZeBrand will be located at Booth 1924 in the Trade Show. The company encourages visitors to stop by, answer a few questions, and walk away with a brand toolkit.

“It is crucial for startups to move fast and try fast,” says Kikuchi. “However, to be a successful and sustainable brand, they cannot ignore creating branding that connects with target users. To speed up the branding process with fewer resources, ZeBrand can be a great tool for startups.”

The Morisawa Story

Since inventing the first Japanese language phototypesetting machine in 1924, Japan-basedMorisawa, the parent company of Morisawa USA, has been at the forefront of typography development and implementation.

Over its 95-year history, Morisawa has created fonts used by designers around the world while maintaining its position as a key player in the evolution of digital publishing.

Even today, all of Morisawa’s typefaces are hand-drawn before being digitized by the foundry’s proprietary software.

According to the company, “Every character is examined individually for balance and harmony, and inspected at each stage of the transition from analog to digital to ensure the highest quality outcome.”

Morisawa’s long-standing reputation rests on the shoulders of its team of artisans who have created typography for some of the world’s most well-known brands.

Through long-running partnerships with Adobe and other global design organizations, Morisawa has continued to evolve with the rapidly changing publishing and design environment.

“Since 1987, Adobe and Morisawa have worked together to bring the subtlety and beauty of Japanese character systems into the digital age,” says Shantanu Narayen, Adobe president and chief executive officer. “Our expanded partnership through Adobe Typekit, part of Creative Cloud, is bringing Morisawa’s industry-defining Japanese type designs to millions of creatives worldwide.”

While the company has established itself as a leading creative partner for global brands, the launch of ZeBrand reflects the company’s eye for innovation and desire to push the limits of the traditional playing field of typography.


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