There has been a mixed response to the unveiling of Standard Life Aberdeen’s new corporate brand: Abrdn.
Announcing the new name, chief executive Stephen Bird described it as a “modern, agile and digitally-enabled brand”.
The company, which was founded from the merger of Standard Life and Aberdeen Asset Management in 2017, says the new name — pronounced Aberdeen — builds on the company’s heritage.
The Standard Life name has recently been purchased by Phoenix which has taken over the company’s life insurance and workplace pension funds.
Bird adds: “Our new brand Abrdn is modern, dynamic and most importantly engaging for all of our client and customer channels. It is a highly differentiated brand that will create unity across the business, replacing the five different brand names that have each been operating independently.”
However, the disemvowelling of the company name has provoked a less than complimentary response from industry commentators, who have described it as “clunky” and “likely to enrage customers’ spell-checking functions”.
Meanwhile posters on social media were quick to point out that the name could be pronounced as ‘A burden’, or that it could be mistaken for a typo.
The company added that the new name will enable it to own digital assets, such as apps and websites without confusion with the Scottish city of Aberdeen (pictured).
The branding roll-out process will begin this summer and progress through 2021. Bird said the new identity marks the next stage in the reshaping of the business, and says its focus will be on three main areas in the year ahead: asset management, technology platforms for advisers, and the UK savings and personal wealth.
The company will also have a new stock ticker, which is expected to be in place before the group’s half-year results in August.