HSBC Logo

HSBC Holdings PLC is a London-based banking and financial services company and the world’s 6th largest bank by total assets. The company’s history dates back to 1866, but it was established in its current form in 1991 by The Hongkong and Shanghai Banking Corporation.

HSBC Logo Meaning and history

HSBC has been using the current logo since 1983. The designer who worked on the project was Henry Steiner, a well-known graphic artist from Austria. Some of his works include emblems for the Standard Chartered Bank, Unilever, and Hilton Hotels.

HSBC symbol

In 1998 The Hongkong and Shanghai Banking Corporation announced that it was going to use the HSBC brand and the hexagon emblem as a single brand in all the countries where it is present. According to the company, the purpose of this was to enhance recognition among customers, employees, and shareholders.

HSBC emblem

The logo wasn’t created from scratch; it was based on the bank’s house flag. The flag comprised a red hexagon with a white hourglass shape inside. Having a closer look at the shapes, you may notice vague resemblance to the cross of St. Andrew, the Scottish flag. This is not mere coincidence. In fact, Sir Thomas Sutherland, who established The Hongkong and Shanghai Banking Corporation, came from Scotland, and he wanted this fact to be reflected in the flag. Interestingly enough, there were quite a few companies started by Scottish expatriates in Hong Kong at that time, and many of them used the cross of St. Andrew as the basis for their corporate flags.

Colors of the HSBC Logo

The bright shade of red is considered the color of energy, passion and action. When performed in black, the logo accentuates elegance and perfection.

Font of the HSBC Logo

The minimalistic serif typeface used for the HSBC insignia looks very much like Times New Roman or Baskerville Old Face.