Skyline a sign of the times

THE corporate signage that fills Perth’s CBD skyline is an omnipresent reminder of the city’s corporate heavyweights.

Costing anywhere between $50,000 to $100,000 in signage fees each year, tower signage is a sure way to make a splash in the big end of town.

While historically the names that adorn our city’s towers don’t change greatly over the years – with banks and financial services dominating – several new names have sprung up in lights around the city.

Among the most recent additions to the city’s stable of tower signs are the Woodside signs, which feature on the soon-to-be-completed Woodside building.

While the oil and gas companies name is not yet up in lights, Woodside’s new building project manager Irena Bril assured WA Business News that the energy group’s name would be illuminated within weeks.

Under an agreement with building’s owner, Deutshe Office Trust, Woodside will pay about $100,000 a year for the building’s signage rights. 

Ms Bril said the decision to acquire signage rights was not directly linked to advertising. She said that, unlike other companies with names on towers around the city, Woodside was not selling directly to everyday consumers and the sign was more about having our stamp on the city.

“It’s like saying, ‘hey guys, we’re here and we are an important part of the West Australian economy’,” she said.

Woodside made the decision to have signage rights five years ago, but the increased security threat since then has put the decision to have the company’s name all over the building in a different light.

Ms Bril said the company considered the security threat and settled on continuing with the signage, mainly because it was decided that, if anybody wanted to cause real harm to the energy company, they would probably focus on the corporate headquarters.

Another new sign is the Citibank signage on Chancery House, which formerly featured Aussie Home Loans’ signs. These came down when the firm exited to Subiaco and are to be replaced by the building’s new tenant, Citibank, for a fee of $60,000 per annum.

The AMP signage on 140 St Georges Terrace will be removed at the end of the year, providing an opportunity for the tenants of the building to increase the profile of their corporate branding.

A spokesperson for AMP said the company had chosen to relinquish signage rights because it was no longer a substantial client in the building.

The City of Perth discourages third party advertising on buildings – signage rights usually go only to tenants – however third party signs can be considered on their merits if there is seen to be an overall benefit to the city.

Colliers International research manager David Cresp said signage fees generally ranged from $50,000 to $100,000 a year, although one CBD building had achieved $150,000/year in signage fees.

In comparison, signage fees in Sydney can cost anywhere between $125,000 and $200,000 for signage on good quality CBD buildings.

Jones Lang Lasalle leasing director David Evans said signage was something a tenant either wanted or didn’t want, depending on whether they perceived it to have value to their organisation.

“It’s a significant cost that needs to be worked out, whether it is any value to the business,” he said.

Mr Evans said banks and financial services, telecommunications and professional services companies used signage to create a corporate branding.

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