Down to Earth
Jordan Edelstein, CMO
A fresh take
Since 2014 when the Stellar Development Foundation (SDF) was founded, we've championed the idea that blockchain technology has the potential to make payments more efficient and inclusive. Later, that focus became even bigger with a mission to create more equitable access to the financial system through blockchain technology.
This has kept us focused on supporting a network best suited to enable our mission and fostering an ecosystem that can accomplish it. During the last few years that work has started to bear fruit, our industry colleagues began to recognize that SDF had stopped talking about the future; instead, we were talking about what was happening today. We looked around and realized it was time for the brand to reflect better where we sit in the industry and how focused we are on reality and utility.
So, while many organizations rebrand after scandals or business changes, this is where SDF is different. The work we are unveiling today isn’t to change anyone’s perception but to better live up to the kind of organization SDF has always been, what and who we value most, and the work we are committed to.
That work is dedicated to solving real problems that real people face daily. The high costs of sending money home. The need for aid delivery in war-torn countries. Making it easier to pay staff around the world. These are the real, visceral problems that SDF and the Stellar ecosystem is trying to solve, and all of them are happening here in our world and being tackled by the people who know the issues best.
The space concepts of constellations, lines, dots, swirls, and the iconic purples and blues no longer captured Stellar. So it was time to come down to Earth, center the brand on the changemakers pushing the envelope and building solutions to improve people's lives, and find folks like us doing the big thinking, empowering work to create change.
From code to reality
This is more than a tagline. It describes the partners we work with, the products built on-chain and how they affect actual people. It applies to the humans who are building on the Stellar network and are thinking about the real-world problems that blockchain can help solve: the solo developers, entrepreneurs, larger fintechs, policymakers & regulators, and more. It puts people at the center of everything we do.
And it states our promise plainly: Stellar is the blockchain for the real world, for real people, built to solve real problems.
When you’re tackling big problems, you need help. And that’s what SDF is here to do. We help support the network, help builders realize their ideas and potential, and help create more access to financial services. That's been our mandate from the start. Everything we design, write, and create should reflect that helpfulness, too. This includes our illustration style, our color palette, and even navigating our new website.
Illustrations on stellar.org and other materials will help explain concepts or ideas. Our colors will stand out in the crowd and guide people to where they need to go, and our photography will showcase real life in all its colorful glory - because life isn’t a perfectly framed photo, no matter what Instagram wants us to believe.
A new partnership
It's not a secret that the affiliation of celebrities with cryptocurrency had an embarrassing run. And it's no secret that instead of jumping into the fray over the years, SDF chose not to work with stars to hype the brand. Now, let me be clear: after 15 years of experience in video game marketing, I am intimately familiar with what good looks like (and the opposite) when it comes to leveraging a well-known individual to help amplify a brand and product story. If we were to do this, an ambassador needed to make sense. We wanted someone who could truly embody our mission, with the same feelings about empowerment and opportunity that we have.
We could not be more excited about our relationship with Idris Elba because his personal story and ethos align perfectly with our mission: creating equitable access to opportunity. Idris's work as a UN Goodwill Ambassador, his advocacy for the Ghanaian film industry, and numerous other endeavors are not just about donations but also about creating systems that allow people to succeed and thrive.
Where passion and impact collide
As Idris and SDF have gotten to know each other, the commonalities in our thinking and views on the world's needs are incredibly aligned. Watch this conversation between Idris and our CEO & Executive Director Denelle Dixon to see what I mean. They actually spoke for an hour and could have kept going. We knew then that we were working with the right person.
I can't wait to have him join us at Meridian in Madrid at the end of September this year and share more about this partnership and his perspective.
This work has been a herculean effort, involving so many, including vital input and feedback from all corners of the Stellar ecosystem – a heartfelt thank you to everyone involved.
The concept 'Where Blockchain Meets the Real World' is something we believe passionately in. It captures our organization's work and the ecosystem's spirit. It spotlights what makes Stellar unique - our focus on people, those who work here, those we work with, and most importantly, those we create change for.