News 24.02.2022

Need to Know

A gin inspired by the visual language of protests, Hublot expands into crypto-craftsmanship, and why financial training could be the next workplace benefit.

A gin brand infused with graphic activism

Assembly Gin, US
Assembly Gin, US
Assembly Gin, US

Washington DC – In response to the recent wave of anti-protest bills passed in the US, women-owned distillery Republic Restoratives is releasing a gin that borrows from the visual language of protest.

Designed by brand agency Midday, Assembly Gin takes its name from the ‘freedom to assemble’, a direct reference to the individual right to peaceful protest. The typeface on the bottle is inspired by the 1968 Memphis Sanitation Strike, the event in which Martin Luther King proclaimed: ‘The masses of people are rising up.’ Other protest posters, including the historic I Am A Man sign from the same strike, also informed the designs.

The company's emphasis on assembly is also a reference to the distilling process, where ingredients come together to create something that’s stronger than the sum of its parts. With an unusually savoury taste profile, including notes of tomato leaf, olive leaf, fennel and oregano, the gin has been designed to ‘leave a bitter taste in the mouth of discrimination’.

Blending protest with alcohol, Assembly Gin demonstrates how drinks companies can use packaging design and branding to accelerate political action.

Strategic opportunity

Food and drink labels can be used to promote social causes. Consider integrating QR codes that redirect consumers to vital resources

Hublot creates a watch for crypto-cliques

Hublot Big Bang Unico Ledger, Switzerland Hublot Big Bang Unico Ledger, Switzerland
Hublot Big Bang Unico Ledger, Switzerland Hublot Big Bang Unico Ledger, Switzerland

Switzerland – Fusing crypto technology with traditional watch craftsmanship, luxury brand Hublot and digital security company Ledger are joining forces to expand the burgeoning category of crypto accessories.

The Hublot Big Bang Unico Ledger includes a Bluetooth-enabled device made by Ledger for safely encrypting, protecting and managing crypto assets. The 50-piece limited-edition collection is is an update on the Big Bang Unico – a model known for its golden bezel made of Electrum, a gold and silver alloy used by the Lydian empire to produce some of the first coins known to man. Updated to reflect present times, the bezel now contains the quote ‘Vires in Numeris’, which is the Latin Bitcoin motto meaning 'strength in numbers'.

These elements, taken together, encapsulate the essence of the world's oldest and most recent currencies merging. Appealing to the next era of digital luxurians, this collaboration signals a new chapter for Next-gen Watches and crypto accessories.

Strategic opportunity

The discerning crypto class has a unique set of demands. To cater for this emerging group, go beyond novelty NFTs to release real luxury items for crypto-holders

A scholarship amplifying Sub-Saharan fashion designers

Accra and London – The African Fashion Foundation in Ghana is teaming up with the Condé Nast College of Fashion & Design for a scholarship aimed at budding designers from the Sub-Saharan Africa region.

The Roberta Annan Scholarship is a two-part initiative that will fund a new student to attend the London college each year, who will begin by enrolling in its Vogue Foundation Program, followed by a BA (Hons) in Fashion Communication & Industry Practice. A second programme called The Global Fashion Perspectives will contain a trio of online programmes built exclusively for students from Sub-Saharan Africa.

‘Africa is overflowing with creative young people with drive and vision, and this scholarship will change not only their lives, but the lives of the people in the communities where they will hopefully launch great businesses’ explains Roberta Annan, founder of the African Fashion Foundation.

As younger students question the validity of traditional schooling curricula, this programme seeks to amplify the voices of a new generation of talent. It demonstrates how cultural institutions such as Condé Nast can help play a role in boosting the African Fashion Market, which will benefit the fashion industry at large.

Brother Vellies is an accessories brand built around the concept of elevating artisans from South Africa, Ethiopia, Kenya and Morocco

Strategic opportunity

Traditional education systems are being challenged by younger generations. How can your business recruit directly from these alternative – and diverse – courses?

Stat: Financial wellness is the next workplace benefit

Google Aotearoa Office. Designed by Warren and Mahoney, New Zealand Google Aotearoa Office. Designed by Warren and Mahoney, New Zealand

Generation Z are entering the workplace with a much more pragmatic set of demands for their employers. New research finds that, in the US, 65% of Gen Z employees expect their companies to offer financial training.

According to research by the Teachers Insurance and Annuity Association of America (TIAA), Gen Z have higher expectations of their employers than previous generations. After observing Millennials’ financial hardship, many are seeking financial training that focuses on retirement, debt management, budgeting and emergency savings. The research found that US workers who have engaged in a financial wellness programme are twice as likely (32%) to have a high financial health rating than those who are not offered resources or who do not participate (15%).

As Gen Z come of age through the financial instability of the previous two decades, this report supports the notion that they are more tuned into Financial Wellness than their older peers. ‘It's no surprise that younger people who are just starting are in a fragile financial situation and dealing with the rising cost of living, rent payments, student loan debt and more,’ explains Snezana Zlatar, a senior managing director at TIAA.

Strategic opportunity

To improve worker wellbeing and achieve higher retention rates, companies must offer their employees training and resources in how best to manage money

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