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Rebranding: Parisian Department Store Le BHV becomes Le BHV Marais!

Le BHV Marais is a shopping department store located in the trendy district of Le Marais, in Paris. The department recently store unveiled a fresh identity with a new look and positioning!

BHV stands for Bazaar de l’Hôtel de Ville, because it is located near the city hall in Paris (Place de l’Hôtel de Ville) in the 4th district. For years, the Marais has been one of the most attractive areas of Paris, with many artists, fashion designers, cafes, art galleries and bars. BHV has now chosen to include the Marais in its brand image to become Le BHV Marais.

1) The challenge:

This rebrand strategy represents one of the most impressive identity works of these past months: new brand, new logo, new visual identity, new store design, new packaging, new ads, new uniforms, and new online presence! Everything was redesigned with the objective to conserve the brand’s heritage while highlighting the geographic position of the store and attracting a new type of consumer.

The rebrand was led by Olivier Bontemprs, creative and partner of the agency Royalties, and the communication strategy was imagined by Rosapark Agency.

2) New target market, brand positioning and slogan:

Today the retail store wants to become the “new inspiring department store” for “trendy and creative urbanites”. The new slogan chosen for the department store is  “le style comme style de vie”, which means “style as lifestyle”.

The company therefore needed:

  • A new name to mark the evolution of the brand
  • A new visual identity to reflect the new positioning.

3) New Name & Logo

Anne-Marie Gaulthier, Communications and Marketing Director of the group of department stores, explained that they needed to get away from the historic dark green logo for a fresh and modern logo that would better represent the idea of a premium department store.

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The inclusion of the word “Marais” brings the store’s cultural heritage and the trendy aspect of the neighborhood to the forefront.

The orange slash at the center of BHV’s new identity represents what BHV calls the “slasher” generation – in other words, the digital youth, who do more than one thing at the same time, much like the “creative urbanites”.

4) New Identity

This new identity follows the modernization strategy of the department store. The company reorganized the interior design of the stores but kept the traditional department sections (DIY, decoration, creative arts) that differentiate the offer from the competition.

The company explained that what consumers look for in big department stores is inspiration. Although the BHV is facing rising online competition, many consumers still enjoy walking through different departments and like to be inspired by physical displays.

Therefore, Alexandre Liot, Director of the BHV created new demonstration spaces and restaurant areas scattered across the different sections and floors. The team wants to bring the store to life with the notions of pleasure and unique consumer experience.

“We decided to really make the inside of the store like a continuation of the streets in the Marais, so the aisles are a bit wider and you have the feeling of wandering through individual shops,” says Gaultier (cited in Bonbrand)

The BHV Marais’ new website is rich in content and editorial, reflecting the brand’s accent on social media and lifestyle, and makes use of its new trademark orange slash.

The new bags are bright orange, just like the logo’s slash.

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5) The results

This brand transformation was very well accepted by the audience. According to the company, the number of visits to the store increased significantly, and the changes are reported to have attracted a new type of consumer to the department sections of the BHV Marais in Paris.

What do you think of this rebrand?
Do you think historic brands always need to keep up with new trends?

References: Royalties Agency, Bon Brand, La Réclame, Underconsideration, Behance

Pictures from: Behance

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