New logo: Blackwater Worldwide

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Blackwater worldwide: the new and old logos

For a company that’s known around the world as a “private mercenary army,” I suspect it must be tough to establish credibility around civilians. And when your company itself goes by the uber-threatening moniker of “Blackwater,” that doesn’t make it any easier. What’s more, if your logo is a gargantuan bear paw in the centre of red crosshairs, topped by your company name in old-west saloon typography, you’re really not helping ease people’s fears.

Luckily, Erik Prince and his band of merry mercenaries have taken the hint, and done their best to tone down their fiercely militant logo – just a little bit.

The bear’s paw is no longer fully encompassed by the red ellipse, and it looks less like the centre of a sniper’s scope as a result. Instead, the footprint (which has inherited some new curves) is bracketed by two half-moons with strikethroughs. The wordmark is trying to get away from the wild west vibe, and has instead gone for the much-friendly BOLD ALL CAPS ITALICS look.

While slightly more corporate in appearance, the changes have done very little to improve the organization’s image: Blackwater remains as scary and suspicious as ever. The new logo simply establishes them as more official-looking, instead of just a backwater militia based out of a hunting lodge in the woods. We’re not sure which logo makes us feel safer.

  • http://www.elbowroomdesign.com/musings neil

    I agree, I think this logo still says Backwater more than it says Blackwater.

    The choice of the bear paw is so “out in the woods with some buddies and a rifle, shootin’ crap”. I think a corporate upgrade means losing the rustic cabin feel and upgrading to something more professional and trusting.

  • Jeff

    You should take a look at the Wounded Warriors Project. It raises awareness for severely wounded combat U.S. combat veterans in Iraq and Afghanistan. It really puts a face on the cost of this war. Here’s a link:

    http://www.woundedwarriorproject.org/aarwebshow

    Jeff