Sprint Corp. and Nextel Communications Inc. today announced that, upon the completion of their merger, expected in the third quarter, the combined company will be known as Sprint, with the Nextel name continuing as a key product brand.
The decision affects the corporations go-to-market identity. Officially, Sprint Nextel Corp. will serve as the corporate name.
The companies are in the enviable position of possessing two incredibly valuable brands with overwhelming positive and powerful equity in the marketplace, says Mark Schweitzer, designated chief marketing officer for the new company and Nextels current senior vice president of marketing. Our brand strategy and logo will integrate the most valuable assets of each companys identity.
The decision to go with Sprint as the master brand was borne out of lengthy consultations with analysts and research firms, which confirmed Sprints broad market awareness among consumers. Nextels reputation as entrepreneurial and business-focused, an identity solidified by its hallmark push-to-talk mobile application, was deemed important enough to retain the name as a product brand within the Sprint service portfolio. It will be used for services provided on Nextels iDEN network, geared toward selected businesses, public-sector customers and high-value individuals who have proven to be avid users of Nextel services.
The Sprint name, brand attributes and the sentiment they evoke in minds of consumers are relevant today and provide a great foundation for the future, says Schweitzer. The combination of these characteristics of the Sprint name with the infusion of Nextels professional-grade characteristics and key elements of the Nextel visual identity are consistent with what the new company aspires to be in the future.
Speaking of visual identity, what is a brand without a logo? Sprint-Nextels new corporate identity will blend elements of Sprints signature pin drop theme (representing clarity) and Nextels yellow and black colors, which command attention, the companies say.
In advertising, the new Sprint visual treatment will include the line, Together with Nextel. For advertising featuring Nextel products and services in the combined companys markets, there will be a Nextel visual treatment that uses the current Nextel logo with the language Together with Sprint.
The master brand of Sprint will cover the entire company with all the offerings, and the brand Nextel will be used as one of those offerings. This will make branding and advertising a lot easier and a lot less confusing, notes industry analyst Jeff Kagan.
This way the company gets to keep the best value of both names. It would have been a shame to not use one of these two very strong marketing names.
The two companies announced their agreement to merge in December.