Sartorius Facts
Sep 23, 2021
| 5 min read

Brand History – The Evolution of the Sartorius Logo

Sartorius Facts from the Archives

Markets, technologies, and products continue to evolve – and so do Sartorius' brand and corporate image. Even in the early stage of the company, the name and, later, the logo served as a means of identification and a promise of quality to customers. This is still true to this very day – even though the logo has changed time and again since Sartorius was founded in 1870 and, like the company itself, has constantly developed with the times.  This article will take you on a journey through more than 150 years of Sartorius logo history.

This article is posted on Sartorius Blog.

Logos in the early years – 1900s to the 1960s

The Logo around approx. 1900

In the 19th and early 20th century, Sartorius used a typical “logo” format for the time – a label with who, what and where. This Sartorius logo therefore had the founders name, the title of being a workshop for scientific instruments, and the location of Göttingen.

In the 1920s, along with its actual logo (middle), Sartorius also used a monogram (left) consisting of the initials of the company founder and headquarters – F(lorenz) S(artorius) G(öttingen). This symbol dates back to at least the beginning of the 20th century. It was used in advertising and brochures, as well as to protect against imitations and serve as a special distinguishing symbol on the products for customers. Until the early 1960s, the main Sartorius-Werke logo remained unchanged. Between 1958 and 1961, some Sartorius brochures and products actually used a combination of the classic Sartorius-Werke logo and an additional so-called “interim” logo (right) to add a more dynamic and contemporary design.

The FSG-Monogram (approx. 1900, left), Sartorius-Werke logo (approx. 1920-1961, middle) und the “interim” logo (1958 till 1961, right)

Quality and precision work – the 1960s logo

As marketing became increasingly important, Sartorius replaced its "outdated logo", after being in use for 40 years, with a more uniform brand identity using a new logo in 1961. The family-owned company's logo aimed to combine both traditional and modern elements of the period. The central message was to convey quality and reliable precision work – at that time, Sartorius was primarily a manufacturer of balances. This was symbolically illustrated by the "fine vertical line" through the O in the visual center of the word Sartorius, which could also be perceived as a zero point. The lower-case lettering further added to the balance and symmetry of the logo.

Logo (1961-1993)

Logo changes in the dynamic 1990s and 2000s

Against the backdrop of the transformation and strategic realignment in the 1990s, Sartorius changed its corporate identity. The new logo was based on the one from the 1960s, but it received a facelift and once again was given a more modern touch for the new period. As a partner for balances and filtration technology in research and in industry, the brand had to have a perceptible point of differentiation for customers without neglecting the company's heritage. A sales employee put it this way, "The logo is the "yellow of the egg" in that respect." This was referring to both Sartorius’ yellow branding, seen in this logo’s “o”, as well as the German saying where something being the yolk or yellow of the egg means it is perfect and on point.

In 2001, the start of the new millennium was accompanied by the ongoing reorientation of the Group and its increasing focus on the biopharmaceutical industry and research, which was visually reinforced by a redesign. This logo with the dot pattern was intended to symbolize the performance spectrum of membranes of different pore sizes, the precision of the balances, and vertical process support at various levels. It was meant to visually represent the realignment of the different business areas of biotechnology and mechatronics in the same way. Thus, synthesis between the different business areas was symbolized in the logo of the company.

“Yellow of the egg” logo (1993-2000) and dot pattern logo (2001-2020)

The latest transformation – Sartorius in 2020 and beyond

Finally, the logo being used today – the new logo was introduced as part of the brand relaunch in February 2020, which aimed to sharpen the brand and better reflect the work Sartorius does. The new business orientation of the company, with a greater focus on biopharmaceuticals, required a repositioning of Sartorius’ brand identity.  As Sartorius has grown into its role as a partner for life science research and biomanufacturing, it was important to convey its goal to help enable scientific breakthroughs and capture the essence of being part of the solution. This has been achieved through the new claim and brand promise: Simplifying Progress. The logo stands out in the industry and visually positions Sartorius’ approach, goal, and promise to its clients and customers, along with a logo which embodies this concept.

Current Logo (since 2020)

This evolution of the logo captures Zeitgeist, demonstrating the different phases Sartorius has gone through and reflects the stylistic features of these different periods. It also mirrors some of the transformations that Sartorius itself has experienced – from being a “simple” workshop to modernizing to reorienting the business and strategic approach. The logo and image of Sartorius has also developed over time reflecting change in style and marketing approaches, but also the dynamic nature of Sartorius.  

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