Italian Trademark Museum
 
 
 

The Ansaldo logo

 
Giovanni Ansaldo
Marchio Ansaldo - Copertina opuscolo
Marchio Ansaldo
Ansaldo - Bozzetto Mario Perrone
Ansaldo - Padiglione esposizione internazionale
Marchio Ansaldo
Marchio Ansaldo
Marchio Ansaldo
Ansaldo - Pagina pubblicitaria 1926
Marchio Ansaldo
Marchio Ansaldo
Marchio Ansaldo
Ansaldo - Pagina pubblicitaria 1938
Ansaldo - Marchio Manifesto Delfino
Marchio Ansaldo
Ansaldo - Pagina pubblicitaria 1950
Marchio Ansaldo
Ansaldo - Costruzione geometrica
Ansaldo - Pagina pubblicitaria
Marchio Ansaldo
Marchio Ansaldo - Griglia geometrica
Marchio Ansaldo
Marchio Ansaldo

The history of Ansaldo's logo

Established in 1853 at Sampirdarena on the outskirts of Genoa by an engineer, Giovanni Ansaldo, from the start this large corporation was involved in the naval and mechanical engineering sector. It was very much the brainchild of Cavour whose scope was to have a domestic locomotive engine and heavy machinery construction and ship-building industry in a drive for national self-sufficiency in the sector. Giovanni Ansaldo, a university professor and founder of school of a people's school of applied mechanics, was called to set up and run the new enterprise. Until the Depression of 1929, Ansaldo was one of Italy's leading automobile manufactures. The years between 1919 and 1929 were in fact very turbulent for the company. Its re-conversion from locomotive engine construction and ship-building to motor vehicle manufacturing was very much an aftermath of the First World War. Ansaldo's first trade-mark was designed in 1912 by an engineer, Soliani, and approved by the then managing director, Mario Perrone. It portrayed the letter "A" adorned with a notched wheel representing the mechanical engineering side of the business, an anchor for the ship-building sector, two howitzers for the military sector, and a thunderbolt symbolising the electrical equipment sector. This device was used up to World War II, sometimes appearing in a circle. In 1919 the logotype used on motor vehicles was framed by a rhombus and embellished by two crossed-over cannons with a clear reference to the companies artillery production. The trade-mark designed in 1938 by Delfino essentially streamlined the original. All the motifs appeared more stylised with a Fascist-like touch conferring a more monumental look to the trade-mark. The logotype was sometimes portrayed on its own. In 1966 Ansaldo definitely left off ship-building and heavy machinery construction and shifted its production over to the electro-mechanical and transport sectors. In 1977 it was felt that the trade-mark had to be redesigned to keep its image up with the times. Helvetica upper case lettering was adopted and the "A" was graphically embellished by a number of modular elements. 1984 was a year of great transformation for Ansaldo. Its trade-mark underwent so many changes to keep pace that it was decided an attempt had to be made to stabilise it by simplifying it to the utmost. The logotype continued to be used as before but appropriately framed so as to give it greater visual impact and to permit its combination with additional information as required thanks to a system of modular frames. The whole operation was handled by Sottsass Associates in collaboration with Ansaldo's P.R. office. In 2001, due to the blending with Finmeccanica, Ansaldo changes name to Ansaldo STS, acronym standing for "Signaling and Transportation solutions"; in the years to come the logo will maintain its graphical identity inside the company. In 2008, after the new design for the Logo of Finmeccanica was presented by Carrë Noir, the Ansaldo logo shared the same faith as the rest of the company.