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Update: Cerebra CEO Mike Stopforth has informed Ventureburn that the issue has been resolved.
Getting bought out by an advertising giant like WPP is bound to get you some serious exposure but, as digital agency Cerebra recently found out, that exposure isn’t always for the best.
According to the website Logo Thief, it was contacted by designer Rolando Murillo of Murillo Design, who noticed that Cerebra’s logo bore a striking resemblance to a design he knocked up for Creative Club of San Antonio in 2001. In all likelihood, the logo was picked up after it was posted on the LogoLounge website in 2005.
To give you an idea of just how similar the logos are, here’s the comparison logo thief posted:
Cerebra CEO Mike Stopforth has since contacted Logo Thief, saying that an employee working for him in 2006 claimed to have adapted the logo from work in the public domain:
When I started Cerebra in 2006 I had an individual working for me who was responsible for our visual identity. He showed me a logo (the reverse angle one we use) and asked if I liked it. I loved it, and we incorporated it straight away. I should have checked, I know, but I trusted the man. In 2009 I discovered another agency in the UK using the same logo (I’m not sure if you’re aware of that iteration of copying). When I confronted my employee he confessed he had “adapted” the logo from a “design in the public domain”.
As Logo Thief notes however, there’s evidence that Cerebra’s been trying to find a new option since at least June, when it posted a US$299 competition for a logo on crowdsourcing design site 99Designs.
In his comment, Stopforth said he would compensate Murillo for the design.
Late last month, Cerebra was bought by advertising and marketing giant WPP for an undisclosed sum.