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Remembering: Don Watt


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(1936 - 2009)

It is with regret that I inform you that Don Watt, our partner in DW+Partners has passed away suddenly last night, Dec 22, 2009.

Don Watt (born in Regina, Saskatchewan in1936) was a world renowned, award winning retail brand builder and designer. Known as a trailblazer in retailing, he was among the first designers to envision a system of branding that unified the entire shopping experience. Don is credited with introducing premium private label brand design to the North American Market. His most recognized brand designs include Home Depot’s iconic orange logo and innovative store concept, Sam’s Choice, no name and President's Choice. Don founded Don Watt and Associates in 1966. Soon after, the firm landed the redesign of the Nestle brand in Canada, which later turning into a global assignment.

In 1973, Don was hired by Galen Weston to help resuscitate the Loblaws brand. He designed the brand, stores, packaging for “no name” generic products, “President's Choice” premium products, “Too Good to be True” nutritious healthy products and “Green” for environmentally friendly products.

In 2003, Don, along with long time personal friend and business partner Geoff Belchetz, founded DW+Partners, a consulting firm specializing in retail branding and design. The company immediately signed retail giant Wal-Mart, in the U.S., to design and manage their “Great Value” brand. In 2005 DW+Partners developed the Super C brand and store design, in Quebec, for the Metro Group and in 2007 developed their “Irresistibles” premium packaging line. Most recently DW+Partners updated the “Food Basics” brand and store design in Ontario, after Metro Group acquired the Dominion and A&P business and created the new “Metro” brand identity for the corporation. In 2006 Don was inducted into Canada’s Marketing Hall of Legends under the category of Enablers – representing those who provide excellent brand-building expertise. In 2008 he was inducted into the Private Label Hall of Fame.

He will be deeply missed by all,
Doug Templeton
St Joseph Content

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