Times may be different, values stay. The Esterbrook Pen Company, a true American Original, is rewriting its long success story in modern times with a fresh new pen collection based on a complete rebranding. Join the revolution!
You know Detroit, Alto Palo or Austin, just to name a few cities that have seen exciting brand revivals or successful births of new brands in recent years. Well, you might want to take a closer look at Mineola NY and at Kenro Inc, a creative branding firm focused on the premium fine writing and watch business with over 26 years of expertise in design, marketing and distribution. Over the past months the Kenro team has been busy preparing the relaunch and revival of a true American Original, an iconic brand that used to be in everyone’s mind, hearts and hands in the fascinating period between 1860 and 1960 just like Apple is today. Never heard of the Esterbrook Pen Company? It’s time to change this…
Let’s take a quick look back 160 years and 120 miles further south to Camden NJ. In 1858, entrepreneur Richard Esterbrook established his own pen company under the trademark Esterbrook Pen Company, which should soon become one of the biggest and most beloved pen makers in the world with over 200 million produced and sold pens per year. Fountain pens and great quality nibs were the hit back then, but Esterbrook offered the full range of pens, pencils and accessories in different finishes and designs. It is not just a saying, but a big part of America’s history was literally written and created with Esterbrook pens. From US presidents Abraham Lincoln, John F. Kennedy and Lyndon B. Johnson who signed legislation with their Esterbrook pens, to famous Disney artist Carl Banks who brought Donald Duck to life with an Esterbrook No 356, to Peanuts creator Charles M. Schulz who used the No 914 for all his comic inkings, Esterbrook pens have been an integrated part of America’s politics and culture in the 19th and 20th century. Not to forget the millions of American kids who grew up with an Esterbrook pen in school and all those visionaries, entrepreneurs, founders and shakers and doers who made their mark with an Esterbrook pen helping build the American spirit and success over the past 150 years.
Fast forward to 2018 and the original Esterbrook spirit is about to be brought back along with all the values that made the brand back then so successful. It’s founder’s entrepreneurial spirit, the outstanding quality at great value, full customer orientation incl. repair service and outstanding and creative designs that made the Esterbrook brand an early American icon and global player. And it is exactly those American values that fascinated Joel Blumberg, Kenro’s founder and president, and made him acquire the rights and patents for this original American brand. Says Blumberg: “If you take the time to dig into Esterbrook’s heritage and how much this brand and its pens were part of great American history and cultural development, you start to see all those parallels to today and why a brand like Esterbrook still has its place in our digital world. That’s why we plan to reintroduce and build the Esterbrook brand on the same values as it was originally born. Yes, times are different, but core values remain deep in all our DNA, and this is what we are building on with this brand relaunch”. Kenro, an original American business, is officially relaunching America’s Original pen brand with a range of quality pens for great value in August 2018, along with a fresh rebranding, new packaging and heavy investments into marketing and social media to reach old loyal fans and new younger followers.
The timing couldn’t be better for Esterbrook to tap into the increasing consumer demand for well made, old fashioned quality items and the desire for products with a history and for authentic stories to be rewritten. Blumberg adds: “We decided to relaunch this iconic brand with what we call the re-concept. Re- means to do it again but at the same time looking back to the original state, this is exactly what the Esterbrook relaunch is in its essence”.
As Esterbrook’s manifesto states: We want to reconnect with consumers, rebuild interest in fine writing and penmanship, revolt against the decline of handwriting in American schools, reestablish brand image as America’s Original, regain trust and market share with retailers, and revive the values and spirit of Richard Esterbrook for the 21st century.
Esterbrook. America’s Original, Reborn.