Branding has played a profound role in human progress. It has been vital to forming belief systems in tribes, expressing ownership in agrarian communities, and declaring origin throughout the industrial age. In emerging economies, brands play a dominating role and increasingly contribute to the way cultures and nations are defined. As leading brands convey clarity, stimulate efficiency, and exchange value, they act as a form of currency in today’s global economy. They help guide the complex decisions organizations grapple with while inspiring the very personal choices we make as individuals. In turn, our choices and decisions mutually shape the organizations that own and manage these brands. We view this reciprocal connection between individuals and institutions as a vital condition for sustainable innovation and growth. These relationships are the reason why brands continue to play a key role in the progress of economies, societies, and cultures.
O+CO works with leaders from diverse organizations, from businesses and philanthropies to community groups and startups. Our clients are typically looking for more than familiarity in their markets. They seek a unique and objective perspective, accumulated from uncommon experience around the world. They value our independence, and they admire our work for its imagination, diligence, and quality. We believe that everything matters: Each step, from concept to execution, must be impeccably connected to deliver a brand that performs beautifully. We take on projects we are passionate about, which ultimately helps our clients deliver a meaningful impact through their brands.
Our formation dates back to 1996, when Brent Oppenheimer and a band of strategists and designers came together to set up a New York office for IDEO, a renowned product development and innovation company. The firm was formally established under the OH&CO name as an independent, privately held entity in 1999, maintaining its core team and its unique fusion of strategic and creative expertise. The O+CO name was adopted in 2009 to better express the firm’s business approach and accomplishments. New York is the city we call home, and from here we attract unique talent and opportunity around the globe.
The intricate demands of brand development work require a unique combination of broad thinking and highly specialized technical skill—capabilities that are difficult to find in a single firm. Our experience with large, multifaceted brand development programs demonstrates the performance and innovation advantages that come from an ensemble of dedicated specialists with a specific project focus. Our core team is regularly augmented by a variety of experts from business, creative, and executional fields. For us, networking and collaboration is second nature and a vital part of how we solve complex challenges with our clients.
Brent Oppenheimer has worked in advertising, design, and innovation businesses with a wide range of client organizations across markets and industries worldwide. He has helped to create and manage several market-defining programs for brands with Nestlé, Heineken, Shell, State Street, the Olympics, and Skadden. Brent has been recognized as an award-winning designer and strategist and has held several advisory positions with industry organizations. He has delivered talks at the Harvard University Graduate School of Design, the Design Management Institute, the Columbia Business School, and Art Center (Europe). Brent helped establish O+CO and enjoys a direct and active role in all projects that the firm undertakes for its clients.
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