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Known Unknown Introduces “Distributed Creativity,” Aims to Reinvent Design Industry for Good

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Every entrepreneur knows that change is an inevitable companion in every venture. But not everyone can rise to the occasion and adapt to the shifts. As an emerging powerhouse in the design industry, Known Unknown is leading the wave of change with its innovative business model—distributed creativity. The approach defies the traditional system implemented by brick-and-mortar design agencies and introduces an out-of-the-box blueprint.

Known Unknown presents a revolutionary solution to the challenges brought by the pandemic as creatives started working remotely from conventional offices. The company follows a 100% distributed model, the purpose of which is to connect creatives across the globe from all disciplines to share, mentor, collaborate, and grow together without being bound by four walls. Furthermore, the platform believes that “the future of ‘distributed production’ starts by finding the greatest talent wherever it may be.”

Known Unknown was founded by one of the most respected personalities in the design field, James Sommerville. In 2013, James became the leading design thinker behind some of the most iconic campaigns of the Coca-Cola Company, where he served as the Vice President of Global Design. His leadership paved the way for innovative design solutions for the Coca-Cola Trademark, Diet Coke, Sprite, Fanta, Minute Maid, Fairlife, and other brands under its vast portfolio. 

With his background in design and typography, James spearheaded various projects. The Coke Bottle 100 Year Celebration 2015, One Brand Strategy KOTM Identity 2016, Taste the Feeling OOH Global Campaign 2016, Workplace 2020 Design for Global HQ and Global Offices, FIFA 2012 campaigns in South Africa, Brazil, and Russia, the CokeXAdobeAYou Tokyo 2020 Global Design Challenge, the Coca-Cola “love” can, and the Coca-Cola “StarWars” activations, to name a few. 

Besides activating global campaigns in over 200 markets for The Coca-Cola Company through creative design solutions, James also has an impressive career as an entrepreneur. He is the founder of ATTIK, one of the leading design providers in the UK, built with the £2,000 grant he received from the Prince’s Youth Business Trust Charity-1986. James is currently an alumnus, fellow, and patron of the Prince’s Trust, which helps start-up companies fuel their operations. For over two decades and a half, ATTIK served clients in Leeds, London, New York, San Francisco, Los Angeles, and Sydney, with over 250 staff under its umbrella. Later on, James sold ATTIK to Dentsu Advertising Japan. 

Furthermore, James has delivered keynote speeches, both physically and virtually, even amid the pandemic. He has also delivered world-class rebranding projects for Ford Motor Company, HP, Kellogg’s Pringles, Nature Valley, Google, and Elanco.

Today, with over 35 years of experience as a corporate executive and entrepreneur, James launched Known Unknown to reinvent the design agency formula as the world knows it. The company’s unique distributed creativity model makes it possible for creatives to form a community even with COVID-19, and it introduces a system that can survive even after the pandemic. Workers realize that working remotely is possible and, for some, sparks more creativity than sitting for hours in an office. 

James witnessed hundreds of agencies pitch their design ideas during his time with the Coca-Cola company and saw a gap in such design agencies. He saw that very few of them were evolving from what seems to be a dinosaur model. With Known Unknown, the design expert wants creatives to have a platform that will provide them with more freedom and will enable them to reimagine the creative industry in its entirety.

Known Unknown aims to have over 5,000,000 creative members from all walks of life across the globe in five years. James wants the company to be perceived as the world’s most creative community, serving over 200 brands and industry leaders. With its unique distributed creativity model, Known Unknown is truly setting the bar higher for the future of design. 

To learn more about Known Unknown, visit its website.

CEO of Penske Media Group. Experienced Content Editor with a demonstrated history of working in the newspaper industry. Spoken on stages around the globe - NYU, US Embassy, P&G Toronto, and much more.

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