Background / Challenge:
EntertainmentOne (eOne) can trace its origins back to 1970 when the business was founded as music distributor Records on Wheels Limited. Through organic growth and acquisition the business became a giant in the music and publishing industry. In 2018, toy company Hasbro acquired eOne for $4B.
In April 2021, Hasbro announced that it would divest eOne’s music business. Private equity firm, The Blackstone Group, stepped in to buy the music division for $385 million, so that Hasbro could focus more on its film and television entertainment businesses.
WANT Branding won the assignment to work with eOne’s leadership to create a new brand for eOne Music.
First, we conducted various listening sessions with senior stakeholders from eOne to learn about the corporate entity and the various parts of the business and labels within it. We then crafted a brand creation brief to guide the program.
First, we focused on name development. Hundreds of name ideas were developed and two formal presentations were delivered to eOne. Initially, the name name ‘Monark’ was presented to evoke an independent, leading music management company. WANT Branding then suggested abbreviating the name to MNRK to create not only a shorter, more memorable identity but also, to deliver a truly unique and memorable brand.
WANT helped to build a story and rationale for the brand inspired by the monarch butterfly. The monarch butterfly is one of the most recognizable and well-studied butterflies on the planet. Its orange wings are laced with black lines and bordered with white dots. Monarch butterflies are famous for their seasonal migration as well as the transformation they undertake to become butterflies.
The Monarch butterfly became a natural source of inspiration for the logo. Hundreds of butterfly designs were considered and presented before selecting a simple, evocative outline idea that could be easily and effectively deployed across digital formats.
Launched in September 2021, the new brand has elicited a positive response throughout the industry.
Today, MNRK is a world-class music management company. Home to over 50 labels including Dualtone, Last Gang Records, Death Row, and Indieblu as well as management and music publishing divisions housing GRAMMY Award winners and platinum sellers.
MNRK Music Group’s roster includes The Lumineers, Brandy, The Game, Blueface, Juicy J, Pop Evil, Shovels and Rope, and Jonathan McReynolds; management clients Kaytranada, Lupita Infante, Powfu, Boston Bun, Lights, Arkells; and publishing on songs recorded by Mariah Carey, Celine Dionne, Cardi B and others.
MNRK Music Group has offices around the world, including New York, Los Angeles, Toronto, Nashville, Miami, London, Hamburg and Melbourne.
Commenting on the new brand transformation, CEO Chris Taylor said: “Our migration as a premium destination for music talent takes a giant step forward today with a new name and new owners that are incredibly well-resourced and as excited about the opportunity as we are. We are ready to fly!”