Absolute’s Rebrand for Pasty Presto has won a Design Effectiveness Award for 2016 from the DBA (Design Business Association).

This is Absolute’s fifth Design Effectiveness Award, making us The South West’s most successful design agency.

Founded in 1994, Pasty Presto began in Cornish fishing village, Mevagissey. MD Steve Grocutt saw an opportunity to employ a local butcher’s wife to make and sell pasties to tourists from
a small shop. From early success, Pasty Presto enjoyed steady growth over 20 years, reaching 30 shops nationally. However, following the introduction of the ‘Pasty Tax’, the mass of press coverage on obesity and healthy eating, as well as London 2012’s effect on tourism, turnover dropped, and continued to drop, with many stores making a loss. The client was faced with either shutting up shop or investing.

Enter Absolute – We thoroughly reviewed products, brand and customer attitudes, and strongly recommended a customer research strategy. The creative team then brought together the brand styling and tone of voice. A new colour palette and brand ethos along with a strapline – The Cornish Bakery – gave the company a new focus and helped them differentiate themselves on the high street.

Commercial impact has been instant and staggering, allowing this relatively small company to punch well above its weight. Barnstaple’s shop, previously pencilled for closure, was the first of three trial cases: it went from loss to profit in three months and has continued profitably since. In all, 60 jobs were saved in the six shops at most immediate risk of closure. In less than a year, the investment in brand redesign has seen failing shops open and thriving, jobs saved, a newly-focused team and increased staff morale and motivation, not to mention an overall increase in turnover of 12% on the previous year. The compelling new brand is winning fans nationally; as a direct result, the company is undergoing major product development, rapid growth and has plans to open a further eight shops.

The Design Business Association exists to promote professional excellence through productive partnerships between commerce and the design industry to champion effective design which improves the quality of people’s lives. Absolute have always been about much more than purely cosmetic design – it’s vital to us to get to know the client, and the product or service from the core, to deliver a design solution that not only looks great, but which really performs and delivers a financial return. The DBA’s Design Effectiveness Awards reward the very best examples of design that have had a tangible and measurable effect upon business success. They are the industry standard for assessing the true impact of effective design. Winning a Design Effectiveness Award proves a design agency’s credentials as much more than an agency – a partner who can deliver commercially effective work. Winning agencies differentiate themselves as a company that clients can trust to understand their business objectives, joining a small and elite group of agencies whose experience and expertise is demonstrated through their unique approach to solving business issues through effective design. By using commercial, behavioural, societal and broader business data to measure the effectiveness of design, these awards champion the role of design in business and play a critical role in proving to business and government that design is an investment, not a cost.

Absolute and Pasty Presto will collect either a Gold, Silver or Bronze award at the black tie Awards Ceremony on Thursday 11th February at Tobacco Dock, London.