About us

We are an independent brand strategy, naming and design agency based in Sydney, Australia.

Our mission

Why we do it

We help people rethink organisations, to unlock their potential and accelerate change with work that pays for itself.

Our motivation is the impact our work offers those who invest in us. We always have our clients’ interests at heart, working without ego, jargon or a soy latte in sight!

What we believe
We use seven principles to guide our work.


Break some rules

When you follow a path many have taken before, you inevitably arrive at the same destination. With the pace of change accelerating and industries facing disruption, we believe there is nothing worse than being like everyone else.

When everyone zigs, we zag; challenging conventions, preconceptions and breaking a few ‘rules’. Venturing into the unknown may take a little courage, but as brand experts we guide change with vision, process and reason to make the journey both comfortable and exhilarating.


Prospect for gold

People often say to us we wouldn’t find what they do interesting. But we have alway thought this a curious statement because we believe gold can be found everywhere. It’s our job as creative people to dig deep enough to find it.

The trick is knowing where to look and by asking the right questions we reveal clues to its whereabouts. The more elusive the prospect, the more earth we move. Once found, we extract, refine and shape the gold into something precious and desirable.


Branding with substance

The substance we create are big ideas. Ideas are the magic ingredient which make strategy and design more potent. They not only capture ones attention and make your audience linger, they prolong the encounter so that people will remember you. 

Once we have the ingredients we formulate the recipe by creating distinctive and beautiful styling to position the brand with attitude and personality. Style is critical, but without the idea design can be decorative and prone to changes in fashion. It is the idea which stays in our mind as a powerful visual reminder remaining constant as brands evolve over time.


The total brand

We do not do just logos. Our work is designed to engage people on a far deeper level — we create brand identity ecosystems which are carefully woven tapestries of logos, symbols, visuals, words and experiences which can become tribal cultures loaded with belief and emotion.

We assess the entire fabric of your organisation: What are your challenges and objectives? What is your structure, mission and culture? What are your brand equities? What is driving change in your industry? Why are you different? What are your competitors doing? Who is innovating and challenging the status quo?


Thinking without limits

We have never limited our work to one type of design or industry, such as brand packaging or financial services because we believe ‘specialised design’ often results comfortable mediocrity lacking competitive vigour. 

Our diversity of experience is critical to how we work – it gives us the tools to look at your world differently and see the bigger picture. It helps us think sideways, encouraging creativity to flourish to create unexpected ‘ahah’ moment ideas packed with advantage. 


Measure twice, cut once

We believe if a job is worth doing, it is worth doing properly. We work with commitment and passion to get the job done right the first time.

You may be tempted to use a cheaper alternative but all too often the money you initially saved is wiped out by the cost of fixing a problem made more complicated and challenging from poorly thought out work.

Amateurish strategy and design can cost far more than time and money. It confuses employees, the market and customers, erodes brand equity and competitive standing – it can even ruin your business.


The compelling truth

There is nothing more compelling than the authentic truth. It is real, easy to articulate and comprehend and it cuts-through the intellectual complexity and made-up stories of brands vying for our attention.

We drill deep to find your compelling truth. We look at it from every angle, pull it apart and model it into strategy and design made more persuasive and profound because it is simple, erudite and true.

Why Propella?

Propella is an abbreviation of propellant, meaning “a substance which can propel something”.

The substance we create are big ideas for brands, more persuasive and profound than ordinary design because it is strategically articulate.

Global experience

Our goal is to create branding which can talk to as broad an audience as possible with cross-cultural ideas which can communicate their sentiment in any language.

We have worked across a wide variety of projects around the world and have the experience and sensitivity required to understand the cultural and translational nuances of symbolism, colour, aesthetics, words and typography to make brand identities truly international.

In person or remote

We always enjoy working with our clients in person, but it’s not always possible (especially today!). Fortunately, we have many years of experience working remotely with our client-partners (even before Zoom was a thing) and helping them solve problems, achieve objectives and exceed their expectations.

Founded by

Originally from the North of England, Gary cut his creative teeth in London in the late 1980s where he was fortunate enough to work alongside some of the worlds’ most influential thinkers and designers at global agencies including Michael Peters Group, Springpoint and Landor.

He is regarded as a leading strategist and designer with a reputation for having created many iconic brand identities across industries and design disciplines, including the famous Vodafone speech mark identity which is now considered to be the UK’s most valuable brand.

In 2002 Gary moved to Australia and founded Propella in 2009. He currently lives on Sydney’s Northern Beaches where he works with a variety of clients in Australia and around the world.