Advertising agency Human Design is acquiring the renowned digital design company Universal Mind, which has created iconic user experiences for brands such as Sony, Herman Miller, Adobe and Apple, announces co-founder and chief creative officer John Weiss.
Universal Mind founder and chairman Brett Cortese will serve in an advisory capacity post-transition in addition to his involvement with a variety of other entrepreneurial ventures.
This is Human Design’s third acquisition within 16 months and a big step forward in its vision to become a full-service agency. The agency bought Clymb Marketing, a performance-marketing agency, in December of 2017, and in January of 2018, bought Solidus, a full-service video production agency. Additional signs of growth include the company just experiencing its best financial quarter ever, it’s opening an L.A. office and an upcoming move into a larger building. Clients include Nike, Netflix, the United Nations, Twitter, Discovery and Vulcan. The shop recently launched a marketing campaign for Ladder, a wellness company founded by LeBron James, Lindsey Vonn, Arnold Schwarzenegger and Cindy Crawford.
The merging shops share a philosophy that is centered on improving life and looking for ways brands can engage with people to do so.
“There’s a lot of simpatico in what Universal Mind does by creating things people enjoy from a user-experience and design standpoint and how Human Design is an agency that wants to move the human race,” Weiss noted. “It’s a natural pairing, and it makes sense for us to purchase an agency that builds things people love.”
The shop prides itself for its problem-solving skills and ability to innovate, design and develop solutions for brand clients. Its information technology and service specialties include mobile apps, Web-based applications, mobile strategy consulting, iOS, Android, enterprise solutions, responsive web, IoT, user experience design and innovation.
Universal Mind’s Live OS app, for instance, allows people to pair up with and set desk-height preferences for Herman Miller’s connected desk. Once they set sitting and standing positions, they can transition seamlessly between the two throughout the day. Universal Mind also designed The Complete Experience—Sony Music’s Jimi Hendrix app—and a new framework that introduced a way to publish content that supports interactive photos, videos, location detection, media-library integration, social media, device synchronization, in-app purchasing and a second-screen experience.
“I am immensely proud of what Universal Mind has achieved over its trailblazing history,” said Brett Cortese. “It has provided a great place for employees and clients to grow, create and innovate. I am very excited that the brilliant folks at Human Design will be taking things to the next level.”