UKTV unveils new look of rebranded W channel

UKTV has unveiled the new look of its W channel, which will replace Watch in a rebrand next week that is aimed at women in their thirties.

The design agency Art & Graft worked on the diamond-shaped geometric branding, which is targeted at "aspirational go-getters who seek high-quality escapism", but the shop insisted the rebrand was not "overtly feminine".

UKTV said the new look was "specifically designed to attract 30- to 39-year-old women and their partners, husbands and family, with whom they share a love of smart entertainment".

W launches on Monday (15 February).

Gareth Barker, the head of entertainment marketing at UKTV, said: "For W we've created a bold look; clearly rooted in entertainment, with a high-end feel. The one-letter name of this new brand is positive and disruptive. It stands out.

"The diamond logo and grid formation is designed to draw the audience in to our compelling content and convey W's brand promise of smart escapism.

"The diamond is a strong, confident shape that encompasses our brand values. Elegant typography and vibrant colours help portray a premium brand that audiences can trust."

UKTV kicked off a major revamp of its portfolio when it renamed UKTV G2 to Dave in 2007. The channel doubled its audience in its first year.

Watch was a rebrand of UKTV Gold+1 launched in October 2008 as part of a wider repositioning of all the UKTV channels following the success of Dave. It was revamped under the strapline "Watch ... together" in 2010.

Mike Moloney, the creative director at Art & Graft, said of the W rebrand: "We've sidestepped the often-used clichés of overtly feminine design tropes, to create an authoritative, premium channel brand that audiences, especially women, can relate to and be inspired by."

W will broadcast shows from the US and BBC content including the same day repeats of EastEnders, the BBC One soap. The channel is also bringing back the weekend EastEnders omnibus, which the BBC scrapped in April 2015.

It is the first time that brands will be able to advertise around EastEnders so close to transmission. UKTV’s ad sales are handled by Channel 4 Sales.

New programmes include On, a documentary series featuring films by the radio DJ Sara Cox, the musician Sophie Ellis-Bextor and the journalist Grace Dent.

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