Coca-Cola recruits Attik founder Sommerville as design chief

JAMES Sommerville, the co-founder of Yorkshire design firm Attik, has been appointed as the head of design for soft drinks giant Coca-Cola.

Mr Sommerville, who launched Attik from a room in his grandmother’s attic in Huddersfield with a £2,000 grant from the Prince’s Trust, has worked closely with Coke for several years, helping to create a new global brand for the drink in 2006 and was behind the iconic drink can designs it launched for events including the 2010 World Cup.

Industry followers said that Atlanta-based Coca-Cola has been searching for a new vice president of global design for a year following the promotion of David Butler to its VP of innovation.

At Attik Mr Sommerville and his team were behind the revitalisation of brands including Virgin, Adidas, Sheraton and Heineken.James Sommerville

Attik was acquired by Japanese advertising group Dentsu in 2007.

“Coca-Cola’s Liquid & Linked marketing communications agenda has, at its heart, powerful design, that ultimately creates brand love and brand value,” said Wendy Clark, senior vice president of Coke’s Global Sparkling Brand Center.

“And speaking of brand love and brand value,” she added, “the addition of James to our team does just tha – adds more love and more value from someone who already knows us deeply. There’s no better feeling than having someone join the team who already feels so much a part of it. Just as he has done until now, James will create immediate impact for our brands, company, and system.”