FN Herstal Logo

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FN Herstal: Brand overview

Founded in 1889 by Henri Pieper, FN Herstal originated in the Belgian town of Herstal as a national military armament factory, known by its official name, Fabrique Nationale d’Armes de Guerre. Starting in the late 19th century, the company began producing a variety of firearms, including rifles, pistols, and machine guns, aimed at the Belgian armed forces and international markets.

During the First and Second World Wars, the company’s production grew exponentially, becoming one of the main suppliers of weapons to the Allied forces. This included the Browning Hi-Power pistol and the BAR machine gun. After the war, focusing mainly on the production of military weapons, FN Herstal briefly diversified into the production of motorcycles and automobiles.

In the 1970s, a reorganization of the company transformed it into a joint stock company, taking the name FN Herstal. Having gone global, the company specialized in the production of small-caliber firearms. It became a major supplier of military equipment worldwide, including the US and NATO armed forces, supplying rifles, machine guns, pistols, and ammunition.

Today, under the auspices of the Wallonia regional government, FN Herstal operates several subsidiaries, including the American Browning Arms Company. In its more than 130-year history, the company has developed and produced more than 500 different firearms, cementing its reputation as a world leader in small arms manufacturing and a key military supplier.

Meaning and History

FN Herstal Logo History

1889 – today

FN Herstal Logo

The former automobile company FN Herstal now specializes in the production of firearms. Interestingly, its logo does not reflect its line of business: the monogram “FN” serves as a universal symbol and does not evoke associations with either pistols or rifles. The letters, decorated with ornate cutouts, swirls, and a small rhombus, are enclosed in an oval. Below is the full name of the brand. This text is in a completely different style – formal, strict, and restrained – and harmonizes well with the black color. The bold sans-serif font is reminiscent of SoftMaker’s Limerick Serial Xbold.

The logo’s lack of direct visual references to firearms is a strategic choice to maintain versatility and broad appeal. The use of a formal and understated typeface for the full company name is intended to convey the professionalism and reliability that are essential qualities in the production of firearms.