International Table Tennis Federation taps into Brand Union for new sports format

WPP’s branding and design agency Brand Union Singapore, has partnered International Table Tennis Federation (ITTF), the global governing body for table tennis, in developing a new format of the sport.

Brand Union Singapore team were given the challenge of collaborating with ITTF to mastermind a completely fresh take on the sport of table tennis and create an overall brand identity and experience that would drive youth participation and add a new dimension to the global appeal of the sport. The announcement of the new format, called ‘Table Tennis X (TTX)’ was revealed at an exclusive event on the opening day of the Rio 2016 Summer Olympics.

TTX introduces an exciting new time-bound format that will amplify the excitement of conventional table tennis by reducing the skills gap between participants and increasing the level of variety and unpredictability to gameplay.

The new sport is not restricted to indoor tables or venues, but is intended to be played anytime, anywhere. Specially redesigned equipment including heavier balls and simplified racquets encourage longer rallies reduce the reliance on spin, making the game more accessible and diverse for a wider variety of players and spectators.

Beyond a being new sport, the TTX brand has been created with a lifestyle spirit at its heart, with the ambition of becoming a catalyst for disruption and high-level engagement within the category. The new identity, “Live the Beat”, uses a vibrant multi-coloured palette to convey the inclusive, diverse nature of the new format. Created for an ‘always-on audience’, all of the elements of the identity express the spontaneous, freestyle nature of the experience and its intended audiences.

TTX will be rolled out globally in a phased approach over the next few months, with a launch event earmarked for May 2017, at the World Table Tennis Championships in Dusseldorf, Germany.

ITTF marketing director, Steve Dainton said: “It’s high speed, energetic and nail-biting. The aim is to ensure every game of TTX is unpredictable till the last second so it keeps both players and spectators on the edge of their seat. With this new format, we aim to make table tennis more inclusive and bring global participation to the next level. We look forward to see people all over the world pick it up and get involved in our wonderful and fun sport. Watch this space for some future cool TTX events coming soon to a place near you!”

Po Kay Lee, managing director, Brand Union (Singapore): “Behind the brand for TTX, the experience for spectators is as important as the experience for the players, and that has been at the heart of all our thinking for this project. For table tennis to reach a new generation of players, we knew that TTX had to go beyond the functional and technical; it has to be an experience and deliver a lifestyle. It has been a fast, fun, and fulfilling journey with ITTF to develop this new format, and we’re thrilled with the results of the partnership.”

Dan Ellis, regional creative director, Brand Union (South & SE Asia): “It’s been a great experience to develop this new brand with ITTF, involving strategic and creative minds from the very beginning. The result is a dynamic new identity that is disruptive, unexpected, and full of attitude. Considering the global scale of ITTF’s operations and its wide reaching, international consumer base, we believe this new brand will connect with players and spectators in a compelling, human and motivating way.”


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