As the global economy continues to grow, earning money internationally should be an easier, fairer process. That's the thinking behind the world's most-connected digital dollar account, Airtm, which has been given a new prism-based identity courtesy of DesignStudio.
Airtm is a Latin-America-based digital wallet that has given users in 190 countries 400 ways to deposit and withdraw money from the global market since 2015. Its mission is to expand people's ability to work and earn internationally without being hindered by the red tape and limited opportunities of their local economy.
Now in its eighth year of operation, Airtm is looking to expand further. With the global economy becoming increasingly interconnected, Airtm recognises that it can uniquely protect the hard-earned money of workers and empower "a fairer financial future" for all its users worldwide. To do this, it teamed up with DesignStudio to create an identity which reflects the full spectrum of possibilities it provides.
When designing for financial services, it's all too easy to fall back on something super safe and conservative in terms of design. Add the digital component of Airtm into the mix, and DesignStudio might have been forgiven for leaning into the technological angle for its visual inspiration. Instead, it examined what Airtm represented rather than literally expressing its services.
"We developed and distilled Airtm's strategy around one single-minded idea: Liberate potential," explains David Moloney, design director at DesignStudio. Building trust in Airtm's products and services also helped differentiate the digital wallet from its competition and became the foundation of the entire brand.
"At the heart of the Airtm brand sits the prism which both conceptually and visually inspires the entire brand world," David adds. The thinking behind the prism imagery is that it represents the "idea of possibility being magnified" through Airtm. Just as a prism can turn a beam of light into a wider spectrum of colours, so too can Airtm open up people to the potential of the global market.
This theme extends to the new Airtm wordmark, which takes advantage of the similarities in terms of shape between the letter A and a typical triangular prism. The crossbar in this letter is even altered to look like a beam of light being shone into and breaking through its prism form. It's a fun detail which naturally extends into a custom icon suite that further communicates the idea of light beams being split apart.
Accompanying this wordmark is a new photographic art direction courtesy of Colombian photographer Mauricio González. This imagery claims to "bring refraction behind the lens" to create a distinctive look that balances the milky white textures of glass with darkness lit up by the suggestion of distantly flaring light. It's a striking contrast which gives Airtm room to be flexible in terms of function and imagery.
An extensive suite of 3D "prismatic textures" work alongside the photography to further communicate the idea of the liberated potential. And through its encouraging tone of voice, Airtm urges users to take control of their finances through language that inspires and challenges.
Rounding off the new identity is a series of custom illustrations created at DesignStudio and developed with the Airtim product team. These images bring a human touch to the themes of prisms and refraction by introducing feelings of warmth to key moments of the product experience.
For Ruben Galindo Steckel, CEO at Airtm, DesignStudio's rebrand came at the perfect time. "As we grow, we need a brand that can encapsulate our ever-growing vision of the future," he reveals.
"A vision that extends far beyond providing a stable currency solution to empower individuals by offering them access to the digital economy. To understand the implication of that vision, the UNHCR predicts there will be 80 million economic migrants in 2030. We believe the global digital economy presents an alternative path forward for everyone stuck in a country with limited opportunities."
He concludes: "DesignStudio was the perfect partner, collaborating with our team and users to truly understand who we are, what we stand for and what they need. Our distinctive new brand shows the world that, through Airtm, people can unleash their global potential."
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