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Winners revealed: DBA Design Effectiveness Awards 2021

Congratulations to all the winners in the DBA Design Effectiveness Awards 2021.


All of the winners results and full case studies can be viewed here. 

The second virtual DBA Design Effectiveness Awards’ winners announcement was held live online, on Tuesday 15 June. Spanning work for global brands and high street banks to family businesses, sports clubs, start-ups and charities, 28 agency and client partnerships discovered if they’d won Gold, Silver or Bronze awards.

Oxfam Superstore
Oxfam Superstore

“From digital platforms to consumer products, transformative branding to customer service, the depth of impact and scale of reward achieved by the DBA Design Effectiveness Award winners demonstrate the relevance of design to every aspect of business. In the current context there are more opportunities than ever for business and government to capitalise upon design’s capabilities to drive change, and this year’s winners resoundingly prove who dares, wins.” Deborah Dawton, DBA Chief Executive


While all of the winning projects prove the powerful impact of design on business success, the judges found ten particularly outstanding, awarding them coveted Gold awards. The Gold winners are:

Sodexo with Without for Modern Recipe - Gold and Grand Prix



The creation of a new brand for Sodexo’s corporate food offer covering every aspect from proposition and identity, to customer experience, interiors, packaging, menu cycles and marketing comms. The Modern Recipe brand transformed corporate canteens across nine countries into thriving spaces to eat, meet, work and relax following the 2017 launch, increasing dining rates 45% and revenue 60% at one key site, and pushing whole business forwards. Read more >

Cafédirect with Family (and friends) for Cafédirect Branding & Packaging - Gold

Cafedirect_DBA imagesA bold new identity and pack design transformed the fortunes of ethical coffee company Cafédirect enabling it to increase the money going back to growers by 27% in 2019. Read more >

Potts’ Partnership with This Way Up for Potts’ Packaging - Gold

image-3Accelerating sales, the ‘stock in a can’ packaging solution was so successful it saved 1.3 tonnes of plastic waste in a year and the business has grown from 10 to 25 staff to meet demand. Read more >

Fourth Wave Wine with Denomination for Tread Softly - Gold

Eye-catching design enabled new, low-alcohol Australian wine brand to secure distribution in 2,500 stores and exports to New Zealand, Canada and Europe within 18 months from launch. Read more >

BrewDog Distilling Company with LOVE. for LoneWolf Gin Re-brand - Gold

r7_bd_lw_slimcanb_v2A dramatic makeover of this gin brand increased retail listings 500%, reduced cost of goods sold by 44% and unlocked an innovation opportunity for BrewDog Distilling Company. Read more >

Lloyds Banking Group with M Worldwide for The Bank of Scotland Flagship Branch - Gold

Reimagining this flagship through service, proposition and environment design has created a completely new financial services experience for customers and all refurbished Bank of Scotland branches will be modelled on the scalable design. Read more >

Soapsmith with Bulletproof for Soapsmith Repositioning & Rebrand - Gold

image-3-copy-2Sales leapt 75% (against 30% target), overseas listings were gained and the business expanded, taking on a second unit and three new staff following its repositioning and redesign. Read more >

Princes with BrandOpus for Princes Branding - Gold

image-4-copyA re-invigorated identity and pack design drove brand reappraisal; 320,000 extra shoppers consumed Princes’ products and brand value grew +8.8% YOY, outpacing competitors in the canned category. Read more >

Whitby Seafoods with BrandOpus for Whitby Seafoods Branding - Gold

image-4This memorable new identity and packaging design solution which uses 85% less plastic, added £8 million in sales growth without any media spend, and increased penetration 40.1%. Read more >

Lakrids by Bülow with Pearlfisher for Lakrids by Bülow Rebrand - Gold

image-1-copy-6Gourmet liquorice brand achieved 139% bottom-line comeback through design, despite COVID-19’s impact on retail operations. Turnover grew +16% YOY versus 2% category growth. Read more >

Castle Fine Art website
Castle Fine Art website

As well as the Golds, all of the Silver and Bronze award winners also demonstrate the integral role design plays in transforming businesses, improving societies and enhancing people’s lives. Among them Modern Human’s redesign of Tesco Bank’s customer services operation, Thursday’s new customer-focused website for Castle Fine Art, DCA’s product design for Reckitt’s Air Wick Essential Mist vaporiser and HMA’s digital web platform and app for DigiBete which saw it become the primary paediatric diabetes resource signposted on and has led to it saving the NHS £442,370 per annum by reducing the need for clinical contact.

Established in 1989, the DBA Design Effectiveness Awards recognise and celebrate the compelling influence of design on the success of a project or business. Crucially, the awards are evidence-based, the impact of design measured and verified.

DigiBete web platform and app
DigiBete web platform and app

The Awards are entered jointly by client and designer and winning projects have been rigorously judged by business leaders from organisations such as Costa Coffee, Electrolux, eve sleep, FT, Harley Davidson, Puma, TfL and Virgin Atlantic in three rounds of judging. The Grand Prix award was selected by a special judging panel which included Diageo’s CEO Ivan Menezes and businesswoman and entrepreneur Deborah Meaden.

clive-grinyer“Despite these challenging times, the standard of applications and quality of stories was stronger than ever. The judges, as rigorous as usual, were able to identify compelling and inspiring stories that showcase how and why design, as we look forward to new horizons, is vital to our future. This year is a celebration of courage and achievement in the face of great challenges across all aspect of business. Congratulations to all of the DBA Design Effectiveness Award winners who have achieved so much, by design.” Chairman of the Judges, Clive Grinyer

DBA Design Effectiveness Awards 2021 winners:

Award Project Agency  Client
Silver Kit & Kin Branding B&B studio Kit & Kin
Gold Princes Branding BrandOpus Princes
Silver Rustlers Visual Identity & Packaging BrandOpus Rustlers
Gold Whitby Seafoods Branding BrandOpus Whitby Seafoods
Bronze Anadolu Efes Spor Kulübü Identity Brown & Co Anadolu Efes Spor Kulübü
Bronze Apetina Branding Bulletproof Arla
Gold Soapsmith Repositioning & Rebrand Bulletproof Soapsmith
Silver Johnnie Walker Blue Label Butterfly Cannon Diageo
Silver Lind & Lime Gin Contagious Port of Leith Distillery
Silver Air Wick Essential Mist DCA Reckitt
Bronze Nûby UK Packaging DECIDE. Nûby UK
Gold Tread Softly Denomination Fourth Wave Wine
Silver Cadbury Heroes Design Bridge Mondelēz International
Bronze Voyager X Ergodesign Globe-Traveller
Gold Cafédirect Branding & Packaging  Family (and friends) Cafédirect
Silver DigiBete Digital Platform HMA DigiBete
Gold LoneWolf Gin Re-brand LOVE. BrewDog Distilling Company
Gold The Bank of Scotland Flagship Branch M Worldwide Lloyds Banking Group
Bronze Tesco Bank Customer Service Transformation Modern Human Tesco Bank
Bronze Oxfam Superstore One Fine Day Design Oxfam
Gold Lakrids by Bülow Rebrand Pearlfisher Lakrids by Bülow
Bronze We Care Too Campaign Sail Creative Newcastle Carers
Silver Henderson’s Relish Rebrand Springetts Henderson’s Relish
Silver Skips This Way Up KP Snacks
Gold Potts’ Packaging This Way Up Potts’ Partnership
Bronze Castle Fine Art Website Thursday Castle Fine Art

Gold & Grand Prix

Modern Recipe Without Sodexo


Kirkstall Brewery Repositioning WPA Pinfold Kirkstall Brewery

Air Wick Essential Mist
Air Wick Essential Mist

All of the winners results and full case studies can be viewed here:

DBA Design Effectiveness Awards 2022

dba_2016_high-033The call for entries for the 2022 DBA Design Effectiveness Awards starts soon. Put your business in the frame to win one: sign up for news and to receive the entry pack when it launches this summer. The entry deadline will be on 5 November 2021. 

Image credits: 

Oxfam Superstore | Oxfam | One Fine Day Design 

Modern Recipe | Sodexo | Without 

Cafédirect Branding & Packaging | Cafédirect | Family (and friends)

Potts’ Packaging | Potts’ Partnership | This Way Up 

Tread Softly | Fourth Wave Wine | Denomination 

LoneWolf Gin Re-brand | BrewDog Distilling Company | LOVE.

The Bank of Scotland Flagship Branch | Lloyds Banking Group | M Worldwide 

Soapsmith Repositioning & Rebrand | Soapsmith | Bulletproof

Princes Branding | Princes | BrandOpus

Whitby Seafoods Branding | Whitby Seafoods | BrandOpus

Lakrids by Bülow Rebrand | Lakrids by Bülow | Pearlfisher

Castle Fine Art Website | Castle Fine Art | Thursday 

DigiBete Digital Platform | DigiBete | HMA 

Clive Grinyer, Chairman of the DBA Design Effectiveness Awards judges 

Air Wick Essential Mist | Reckitt | DCA


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