How Montblanc got a Logo and a Name

It is one of the most iconic logos in the world, well recognised among the well-heeled. And with the company deciding to foray into the entire luxury sector, it’s going to become better recognised in the coming days.

We’re talking about the white star that is synomyns with Montblanc. How did the company get this logo? There’s an interesting story behind it. In fact, it was the logo that may have ended up naming the company.

When Montblanc started, it was named the Simplo Filler Pen Company of Germany. The year was 1906. One of the most famous pens it manufactured was the Rouge et Noir, meaning the red and black. That’s because of the two colours that made up the pen.

Then, one day, one of the three founder put a white top on to the cap of a pen. It was this man’s brother-in-law (or relative), a France-based marketing expert, who spied the new look and said it resembled Mont Blanc, the highest peak in Europe. Why? Because the peak is perennially snow covered, even if the mountain is not. Hence, it has a perennial white top. And the pen, all black below, with a white top on the cap, looked, to the marketing man, like Mont Blanc the mountain. From this was born the company’s new name; Simplo was renamed Montblanc to capitalise on the design element and also to garner snob appeal: since French goods were perceived as superior and luxurious, the company felt it could get a better mark up as “Montblanc” then as “Simplo”.

In 1913, the white top became a white six pointed star, and has remained there ever since. Over time, the logo has drawn the ire of those who dislike the company or its pens: those in favour refer to it as “snowflake”, while those against call it “bird splat” because it looks like something that dropped onto the pen from the sky.

Regardless of your views on the company, the logo remains among the most identifiable in the luxe world.

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