Asian Football Confederation rebrands flagship competitions via FutureBrand Australia

The Asian Football Confederation (AFC) has rebranded its major national and club competitions with a series of new visual identities created by FutureBrand Australia.

The AFC’s exclusive commercial partner, Football Marketing Asia (FMA) worked with the independent branding company on a new look and feel for the confederation’s six flagship football competitions.

Australia has been a member of the AFC since departing the Oceania Football Confederation in 2006, and competes in major AFC competitions including the Asian Cup, Women’s Asian Cup, U23 Asian Cup and World Cup Asian Qualifiers.

These four competitions now have new brand identities ahead of the 2021-2024 and 2025-2028 rights cycles, as do the club tournaments the AFC Champions League and AFC Cup.

FutureBrand Australia CEO Rich Curtis, who acquired the company’s local operations from Interpublic Group last year, told Mumbrella the project has been creative and collaborative throughout each step of the rebranding process.

“Asian football is hugely popular and the new branding is designed to express not only the excitement of the game but also the colours and cultures of the cities and countries where it’s played,” he said.

“It has been a creative and collaborative approach at every step, and the new branding now sets the platform for Asian football to deliver compelling brand experiences in those moments that matter.”

The rebrand was informed by stakeholder collaboration and extensive consumer research across Asia, with the new look inspired by football stadiums and the colours of Asia’s top teams.

In particular, the new AFC Champions League logo is an interpretation of the competition’s iconic trophy, as well as combining elements from the West and East in a new design.

The new AFC Cup logo incorporates five colours which represent the regions where the competition is played.

“Collaboration has been key to this project, both in terms of consumer research and stakeholder engagement across Asian football,” Curtis added.

“This approach ultimately informed the unique character and design of the new competition brands, from research and brand strategy to brand identity and experience.”

AFC President Shaikh Salman Bin Ebrahim Al Khalifa said the new visual identities will resonate across Asia and around the world.

“We are delighted to start the new year with all-new AFC national team and club competition brands. The AFC strives to make its competitions even more relevant for its diverse fanbase while showcasing their unique reputation as Asia’s most popular football events,” he said.

“I am convinced the new visual identities will resonate strongly across Asia and worldwide, and I am looking forward to the new look and feel across social media and TV broadcast.”

The AFC rebrand comes at a transformative time for football in Australia, after governing body the Football Federation of Australia (FFA) renamed itself to Football Australia in December of 2020.

Meanwhile, Australia’s premier football competition the A-League has signed new partnership deals with insurance firm Gallagher, and Bunnings Warehouse.

The A-League also completed its formal separation from Football Australia, with the league now run by a new board called the Australian Professional Leagues (APL), who’ll also oversee the W-League and Y-League.


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