Case Study: Wilfort Inc. Corporate and Product Branding

Industry: Aquaculture

The Challenge

To develop branding from scratch for a young company is like building a house on an empty lot for a couple that just met. Nothing exists and the parameters are constantly changing as the start-up makes business decisions during the process. Everyone is learning about each other and it is both exciting and daunting all at the same time. So was the case for developing a new logo, look and feel for Wilfort Inc.; our new neighbor literally up the hill and across the street.

Initial sketches and ideas

Wilfort Inc. is a U.S. processor and provider of superior quality Artemia cysts, unique shrimp larval feeds and pathogen control solutions. Neil Gervais, their technical director and general manager, is broadly known for his expertise in the aquaculture field and is leveraging his experience, with international partners, to launch Wilfort Inc. and its brands into the global marketplace. SmithBates was contracted to develop new logos and eventual packaging systems.

Our Process

Our first order of business was to learn about Wilfort Inc.’s business. We toured their facilities, got an education on their products (Artemia are actually the same tiny creatures as Sea Monkeys), and researched other aquaculture companies. The Wilfort Inc. team provided input on imagery and colors, but was open to fresh ideas. An overall logo for the company was needed and separate branding for the company’s “Golden Seas” products was needed as well.

Various logo iterations

After brainstorming meetings, many changes and iterative drafts, the final decision was to design a logo with an icon/monogram that could stand-alone and also tie into the product lines’ branding. The addition of “Aquaculture” was added to the logo to give the viewer industry context. The three product lines: Golden Seas Artemia, Golden Seas Feed and Golden Seas Solutions, make use of the same fonts as the Wilfort Inc. parent logo and include the monogram reversed in a circle as an identifier. A color palette of cool blues and green are assigned to each sub product while the bright gold ties all the product lines together. This system allows for easy expansion and growth.

Results That Shine

We took Wilfort from nothing to a beautiful and professional logo system in five weeks. During that time, we also developed product packaging for bags and buckets (in English and Spanish), which is still an ongoing process. We are currently designing stationery collateral. JC Thompson, lead designer and logo system creator muses, “Initially, the Artemia shape was considered, evolving organically into the Wilfort Aquaculture combination mark. The Golden Sea sub-brand cohesively combines the (WA) logo mark with an expanded colorway. A new brand emerges in a bold, very adaptable logo system! Now, where’s my barrel of sea monkeys!”


Final logos

It is a creative team’s dream to work collaboratively with a client and help them develop a visual identity they can be proud of. It really is similar to building a house. You need to carefully consider how you want it to function and it needs reflect your personality. It must to be able to expand but yet remain timeless and relevant because everything that follows is built off of this foundation. SmithBates is proud to help lay those first bricks with Wilfort Inc. and we look forward to working together in the future.

“The branding process was challenging, but a cooperative effort with exceptional end results. Evelynn Perlman, creative director from the SmithBates team, was a pleasure to work with. Never missing a detail she truly understood the direction and vision we want for our company. ”Niccole Gervais-Malm, Product Manager, Wilfort Inc.
537 Northern Heights Blvd., Klamath Falls, OR 97601 / 1.800.303.3714 /