Celebrating 45 years of transforming spaces with a bold new brand

For its 45th anniversary and following a period of substantial growth, McCarthys was looking to reimagine its brand. They wanted to reflect the second generation business it is, its talented people as well as set them up for future growth.

Due to our branding credentials and 30+ years’ experience in the property sector, Barques was called in to deliver the project.

McCarthys is a design, build and fit-out contractor established in 1979. Delivering a mix of workplace consultancy, office design and fit-outs, the family-run business has established a reputation for bringing spaces to life. Clients span motor retail, education and hospitality, as well as commercial and office settings, and include SEGA, the Ministry of Justice, Rolls Royce, and Ferrari, to name a few.


of new business wins confirmed for 2024-25


increase in turnover forecasted for 2024-25


increase in permanent employees

Discovery session

To truly get under the skin of the McCarthys brand, the first stage was a company-wide discovery session. Using a mix of brainstorming activities, questionnaires and open discussions, we obtained the perspectives from those across the McCarthys business.

Taking these insights and combining them with other research elements such as competitor benchmarking and audience profiling, we then defined a new vision, mission, values, and key messages.

The process provided clarity over McCarthys as a business, where they are going in terms of growth aspirations, and what was needed to reflect 45 years of history. This understanding influenced creative direction. From this we could start developing an evolved identity that will take the business into a new era and period of growth.

Brand and web design

Once the strategic brand elements were defined, we developed initial mood boards to show how these could be reflected through logo, brand styling, colour palette and typography. Very quickly, a preferred direction was established which incorporated vibrant orange shapes against a deep blue background. The concept centred around McCarthys’ existing brand. Taking inspiration from the original logo, Barques design team built on the heritage brand, evolving the four squares into a flexible frame.

From there, the brand was fully developed and signed off, before design elements were rolled out across window graphics, business cards, company brochures, and branded workwear, such as fleeces, high-vis jackets, and helmets. Barques’ creative team developed a suite of internal resources, including email signatures, templates for case studies and letterheads, tender documents, and an organogram, to ensure consistency and professionalism across all communications.

For the website, we focused on creating a user-friendly interface that clearly showcased McCarthys’ services and previous projects. The design incorporated the new branding elements seamlessly, with strong visuals and case studies to demonstrate the business’ work.

Brand activation

The first stage of brand activation was an internal launch including a custom-made video. Then, to spark intrigue and build anticipation among McCarthys’ network, we assisted with a teaser campaign, featuring sneak peeks of the new logo and branding elements. We rolled this out across social media and via email distribution.

As a unique tactic, we collaborated with McCarthys to design custom Lego figures resembling McCarthys business leaders. The concept here was that McCarthys develops projects ‘brick-by-brick’ and has a lego-cy spanning decades. These figures have been photographed around Birmingham, by the bull and in Victoria Square, as well as at a number of McCarthys’ client sites, to generate content for social media.

Long-term, we’re working alongside McCarthys to raise their profile as an industry leader, and build credibility as the business forecasts continued growth.

The launch of our powerful brand refresh has been 45 years in the making. We’ve significantly grown as a business and a lot has happened to get us to today. Our brand and website are now as inspiring as the spaces we create, and we’re beyond proud of the result.

Steven McCarthy
Managing Director

Creative agency Birmingham

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