Buildabrand offers startups high-quality branding for the price of a domain

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Every now and again, you come across a service that promises to disrupt and change the entrepreneurial landscape for good. Buildabrand (@buildabrand) could do just that. The service provides high quality “strategically correct” branding for your startup for about the same price as domain registration, effectively bypassing what is a traditionally expensive and time-consuming process.

Answer a few questions about your business and buildabrand will provide a selection of brand identities: logos, fonts and so on. You can then apply that branding (after customising it, if you choose) to downloadable graphics, stationery, website templates and even – eventually – merchandise like pens and beach towels. You just pay for the items you order or download. The service requires no creative skills from users.

How does it work? Well, once you’ve entered a bit of information about your company at the “create” stage of the process – your “brand values” – buildabrand’s algorithm will exclude all the brands, including logos, in its extensive (and ever-growing) catalogue that aren’t appropriate or relevant and just show you the ones that are right for your business. You can choose from the selection it gives you, tweak the logo a bit – say, if you want it in a different colour – and you’re good to go.


CEO and design director Justin Champney was formerly head of brand innovation for McCann Worldgroup. Justin brings 15 years’ branding experience to the start-up, but he’s going to need every year: buildabrand must get the algorithm right, because it’s the quality of the recommendations that will determine whether buildabrand stands or falls. If Champney pulls it off, buildabrand has the potential to be one of the most disruptive elements in the start-up ecosystem for years.

buildabrand was formed in 2008 and completed a round of angel investment from a sole investor last November.

Update: a blog post from the company founder here explains a bit more about the service in response to some commenters’ questions.

We have 200 beta invitations for buildabrand for TechCrunch readers, available on a first come, first served basis. If you want one, leave a comment below. You’ll be notified when buildabrand’s open beta launches later this year.

  • Farukh Bashir

    looks neat. getting on the invite list.

    • MyLocator ( tm )

      i have never seen so many “undercover spam comment supporters” on a tc article.

      • John

        Yeah, lots of spam in this comment section. This is just a logo wizard. woopty doo. Who would actually use this thing to create a real brand??

      • Holly McBain

        Anyone who wants to get a leg up and cannot afford the huge expense the other branding companies charge.

        It sounds interesting and I would like a beta invite myself.


      • Saheed

        I refuse to believe that I am late to the party.

        I want one!

      • Troy Peterson

        I agree…
        Branding is not just a logo.

        The logo is just a small part of the whole.

      • Philip Wilkinson

        and MyLocator ™ is not a spam robot in any way then? Can I suggest you stop being a troll and go find somewhere else to comment in an non-constructive way.

      • Omnibus

        DouchebagLocator is the king of troll spam.

    • M y L o c a t o r (tm)

      i have never seen so many “undercover spam supporter comments” on a tc article.

    • Nasr

      Hi Basheera,

      Don’t you think that creating a brand identity in today’s fiercely competitive world of everyday geniuses and startups, is something more than an automated permutation and combination of stock templates?

      I mean branding has always been an expensive proposition for an entrepreneur just because of the fact that your success is directly related to it to quiet an extent.

      I do not, at all, want to downplay the innovative idea, but it would have comforted me more (as a potential client) if Justin Champney, in the news section, would have talked a bit about some Advertising/Creative whizkid on board more than talking about Java, PHP, Apache, ACS… Isn’t brand building more about creative thinking?

      • Trouble

        DIY Websites deprive companies of the consultancy and strategy that can earn them a reputation, and revenues. DIY branding seems to be the same trick that (innovative) startups are pulling over people’s eyes.

        This is not solving a problem but creating a bigger problem. Allowing anyone to believe they can build a brand on an automated service is misleading. Then again, if you are launching an ice cream van the kids won’t care if your logo is crap, so this idea still looks better than the DIY logos on printers websites.

        The design looks respectable, but ironically the logo looks like it had minimal thought behind it. Maybe that is the intention. Stick an icon infront of your logo and that is your strategy. Great? No. Trouble? yes.

      • Cherie DePalma

        I agree. Brand building is about creative thinking and this is a competitive world. Success in your business largely lies in the hands of your brand. Large, successful companies and corporations can spot a ‘vending machine’ logo or brand just like they can spot a cheap website template. Sure, it may look okay from first glance, but there is something very cookie cutter and pre-generated about this method. It really all comes down to the simple rule, you get what you pay for. When you buy your shoes from WalMart, you can’t expect them to take you very far.

  • Arthur K

    Sounds like Frontpage in the good old days for Brands :-)

    Would be interested in an invite!

    • Robin Majumdar

      +1 about FrontPage … hopefully this will generate cleaner code and equally relevant branding a bit better than FP98 did back in the day.

      Would be interested in evaluating the beta for client sites…

  • Matt Carter

    Interesting site. Defiantly keen for the beta :)

  • Steven Wedge

    I want a beta invite.

    Service looks good!

  • Samuel Ryan

    I’m interested in a beta invite ;) It looks interesting.

  • carey paris

    May I have one of your invites?
    Thank you

  • Ilan Dee

    Can I have a beta invitation please?

  • Jared

    Hi there, looks really cool but I’m dubious about how the quality will be.

    I would love a beta, this is something a lot of my clients ask for.

  • Gregor Richardson

    I am certainly interested in trying their service.

  • Harri Manninen

    This sounds absolutely fantastic if they get the algos to work. Might imagine using this to build n+1 online brands.

    Interested in the beta, sign me up!

  • Gregor

    I am certainly interested in trying their service.

  • Rafael Jegundo

    This sounds a very interesting service.

    If there’s still invites, I certainly would like to try it out!

  • Eddie

    Why is this only available to TechCrunch Europe readers? It’s usually the Europeans that get left out of things, not us Americans. :)

  • Michael

    Interested in an invite here too :)
    Would like to see what it can put together for me, and how close it is to what I already have

  • Scott

    Looks interesting. Definitely would like an invite.

  • Alex

    Hi – could you put me down for a beta please


  • Alan Alper

    I’m interested in seeing how well this works, I have a lot of clients this could work very well for.

  • Michelle MacPhearson


  • Jake

    Sounds like an amazing concept for an often too-expensive process. I’d love a beta invite! Thanks!

  • James R

    Sounds a superb idea, a lot of time saved, would be interested to see how many sites end up with similar logos – They will need a pretty big back catalogue.
    Would be interested in a Beta test.

  • BBerryNews

    This service looks very cool…
    Can i have one invite?

  • Iggy Mwangi

    I don’t understand how they build a brand. From your description it sounds like they build your logo. Logo and Brand are not the same thing.

    “How does it work? Well, once you’ve entered a bit of information about your company at the “create” stage of the process – your “brand values” – buildabrand’s algorithm will exclude all the logos in its extensive (and ever-growing) catalogue that aren’t appropriate or relevant and just show you the ones that are right for your business. You can choose from the selection it gives you, tweak it a bit – say, if you want it to be in a different colour – and you’re good to go.”

    • ZingerSteve

      Yes, it looks like a logo creator site that places the artwork on a bunch of templates (stationary, etc.) and calls it a “brand”.

      Branding is far more than the visual style of a business and something that needs to be considered with depth.

      This is as disruptive to brand creation as the gazillion cheap logo creator sites are to the design industry – meaning it’s not. It’s an inexpensive avenue for those who can’t afford professional services anyway.

  • Paul Maher

    Interested in testing the beta for new start-up sub brand of Positive Marketing

  • Kunal Parikh

    Hi, I’d like a beta account as well.


  • Peter

    great idea. please send me an invite, thanks.

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