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Pivoting to the Right Perception

Covered incorrectly by analysts, this TSX-listed premium distributor had to reinvent how they showed up on the Street.


Corporate Rebranding, Strategic Positioning, Brand Architecture, Key Messaging, Brand Naming, Logo, Brand Identity, Visual Style, Brand Guidelines


Adentra is a TSX-listed, well-established distributor of premium architectural products in North America. With several customer-facing brands, a global imports division and a design firm all under its umbrella, this company had created a large and impressive footprint. Their previous name, HDI which was an initialism of Hardwoods Distribution and Imports, created the impression to industry analysts that they are a lumber distributor, and consequently, analysts and investors grouped the firm amongst an incorrect cohort of companies.


How do we create an identity that correctly positions the client as a premium brand alongside the correct cohort of industry peers, yet differentiating them enough to communicate its distinct value?

  • new company name

  • updated voice and key messaging

  • new logo and visual identity system

  • brand guidelines

  • creative direction for content, imagery and style

  • updated market positioning


As a starting point, we dove deep into the client’s industry peers and competitors and organized them into two groups, one with positive associations and the other with detractor qualities.

We then implemented our brand intelligence solutions to deconstruct the communication used by these groups and discovered opportunities for our client to utilize key terms and language statements that did both: differentiate them, and better aligned them to their desired positioning.

Continuing on with this process we disassembled the industry groups’ visual identities and content and mapped out a macro brand study which highlighted cliches in terms of colour, imagery and logos.

As the final step of the intelligence process, we workshopped input from the executive team collecting their insights and perceptions on their company’s brand in terms of legacy, value and aspirations.



Taking insights from the intelligence phase, we embarked on the naming process exploring several directions while considering contextual guardrails such as the company’s brand architecture, communication channels and their investor audience. We developed a manifesto to capture the voice, language and tonality of the brand we wanted to create.

Upon several rounds of feedback, we landed on Adentra, a take on the Spanish word ‘adentro’ meaning ‘inside’. The rationale represents the client’s end result of a premium space’s interior envelope for which they enable and distribute architectural products for. The sound and feel of the name easily differentiates the client from the industry while communicating a design-forward premium brand.


Extending the brand attributes into the visual identity, we designed a logo to represent a premium brand alongside an icon that speaks to the many facets of the company coming together in a unique way. The colour palette and tones represent an elevated entity making it stand apart from industrial players who tend to use single flat tones in their brand colours.


The executive team at Adentra has indicated positive feedback on how the new identity has been received by their employees, partners and the market. The rebranding has allowed them to communicate their premium value to investors, and the identity is set up to drive campaigns and communication for their marketing and business development practices.


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