Australia Post operates as a government-owned company and offers several additional services and basic services, such as banking, travel insurance, currency exchange, document photography, and the sale of office supplies. It finances itself from the profits it makes and does not take money from the Australian budget. Its network includes about 7000 branches in cities and remote villages. Sometimes this is the only way to communicate with the outside world.
Meaning and History
Australia Post was established in 1975, but its history can be traced back to April 25, 1809, when the first colonial letter delivery service was introduced. After the unification of the colonies in 1901, the disparate postal systems became part of the Postmaster-General’s Department, which provided telecommunications services to the continent’s inhabitants. In 1975, the department was abolished, and special commissions took over its functions. Among them was the Australian Postal Commission, which later became the Australia Post.
As the postal service evolved, there was a need for a new positioning – more modern and appropriate to the era of e-commerce. Simultaneously, the visual identity had to preserve the brand’s heritage, contrary to the desire for progress. Therefore, if there were any changes, then they were minor.
1975 – 1996
Pieter Huveneers was hired to create the first Australia Post logo. The artist played with the letter “P,” depicting it as a strip and a semicircle in negative space. The stylized “P” divides the red circle in two. The left side looked like half an oval, and the right had the shape of a horn, which heralds used in the Middle Ages.
The drawing was complemented by the inscription “Australia Post” located on the right in two lines. The designers made it black and chose a simple sans serif font for the design. The first letters in both words were in capital letters.
1996 – 2014
In 1996, the logo was based on a long red rectangle. In this case, the semi-oval and the pictogram were repainted in white, and “P” in red. Next to them was the name of the postal service. The word “AUSTRALIA” was written in small print. “POST,” on the other hand, immediately caught the eye because of the large letters and the stylized “P.” The same wordmark “POST” with an open “P” was created in 1991. Essentially, the designers took it and moved it into a rectangle to complement the circular emblem.
2014 – 2019
Australia Post redesigned again after acquiring StarTrack delivery service. The developers visually separated the horn symbol, removing the common base – the rectangle. But they put the icon in a red square, so it stayed white. Only the color of the inscription has changed, which turned out to be on a light background.
2019 – present
In 2019, Melbourne-based firm Maud revived the original Australia Post logo, created in 1975. Designers only slightly redesigned the typography, making the letters large and red. Before the rebranding, a survey was conducted in which executives and general managers took part. Experts learned the opinion of stakeholders and made up a business strategy based on the data obtained.
As part of the project, the designers gave the Pieter Huveneers horn a second life. The iconic symbol has returned to uniforms, signage, liveries, merchandise, automobiles, and burst into the digital world in its original form. It is now found in post offices across the country with a new wordmark. In the classic version, the inscription is on the left, but there is also a horizontal version, where the phrase “AUSTRALIA POST” is at the bottom.
The logo contains an icon in the form of a wind instrument previously used to signal a postman’s arrival. Messengers blew the horn when they brought mail or left the city. It was popular in the Middle Ages but has now lost its original meaning. This attribute has survived only as a traditional element of many emblems, including the Australia Post branding.
Font and Colors of the Emblem
On logos 1996-2019 sans serifs from the Zurich family are presented: Zurich Condensed was used for the first word and a modified Zurich Extra Black for the second. In 2019, the designers decided to emphasize Australia’s importance, increasing the country’s name, equating it with “Post.” A custom sans serif font balances out the stylized “P” in a circle. It is very similar to the Brix Sans Medium created in 2014 by Livius Dietzel and Hannes von Döhren. A similar typeface is Neology Grotesque Regular. It was released the same year by Shinntype.
Both the inscription and the post horn are colored red. The rich shade # DD1223 is the foundation of Australia Post’s visual identity. It is complemented by white, which serves as the background and forms a “P” -shaped gap inside the circle.