Designing Sony's Pride Logo


A corporate logo is an essential element in forming the foundation of a corporation's relationship with society. In May 2022, Sony introduced a Pride Logo incorporating rainbow colors as a visual representation of its commitment to supporting the LGBTQ+ community. As June is Pride Month, an important time to spread awareness about LGBTQ+ support activities around the world, this edition of the Corporate Blog will share the thoughts of the Sony employees who had a hand in designing the Pride Logo.

Sony's Support for the LGBTQ+ Community

Sony welcomes employees from a variety of backgrounds. One of Sony's founders, Masaru Ibuka, once spoke of the importance of diversity, likening it to the stones in a castle wall.

"A company is like a castle. It must have a firm and strong wall foundation with stones of various sizes built into it."

Sony has designated diversity as one of its core Values, and places great importance on supporting the LGBTQ+ community. As Kazuhiro Takefuji, who works to raise LGBTQ+ awareness at the DE&I (Diversity, Equity & Inclusion) Planning Office of Sony People Solutions Inc., as part of Sony's overall DE&I promotion activities, recalled, "Sony has been enacting support initiatives for the LGBTQ+ community since before the term `LGBT' was even well-known in Japan."

In May of 2013, Sony released its "Diversity Statement," which is seen as a turning point for LGBTQ+ initiatives within the company.

Takefuji explained, "The Diversity Statement was an important declaration that articulated the value placed on diversity by company management. Today, the statement defines diversity as `characteristics that encompass race, nationality, religion, beliefs, disabilities, gender, age, origin, sexual orientation, gender identity, values, work style, and activities.' In releasing this statement in 2013, Sony became one of the leading companies in Japan to clarify its policies related to the LGBTQ+ community."

To help LGBTQ+ employees feel confident in who they are, Sony Group has supported the Tokyo Rainbow Pride since 2017 and Pride Center Osaka since 2022, and has also endorsed Business for Marriage Equality since 2022.

(Left) Sony Group and Sony Interactive Entertainment participated in Tokyo Rainbow Pride held in April this year.
(Right) The Pride Logo and message video were broadcast to large crowds at Sony Vision Shibuya, located in the middle of the parade course.

Creating the Pride Logo

The Pride Logo was displayed at Tokyo Rainbow Pride in April of this year. Takefuji explained the purpose of creating the Pride Logo:

"The Pride Logo is intended to visually demonstrate that Sony stands with the LGBTQ+ community, and at the same time express respect and support for LGBTQ+ employees and communities internally and externally"

The drawing up of guidelines that would determine the use of the Pride Logo, as well as the design process itself, began in the fall of 2021, with the goal of having the logo ready for use by Pride Month 2022. The project team consisted of nearly 100 DE&I personnel from the United States, Europe, and Asia, including Katharina Miyanaga and Chiho (Chelsea) Takekura from the Brand Strategy Department, Sony Group Corporation, who were in charge of brand management and Tomoaki Yamura from Creative Center, Sony Group Corporation, as the designer.

Miyanaga explained the background for starting the project as follows:

"The project was driven by requests from Sony Group employees in Japan and overseas. At first, the rainbow colors that represent the pride and respect for the LGBTQ+ community were used around the Sony logo and not directly as its color, but then we started having discussions about the meaning and importance of making the logo even more inclusive, and began a collaborative process to figure out the specific details of the final design."

Takekura described the team's process in creating the logo:

"The team members understood the significance of creating a rainbow logo with the Sony logo. We also received many valuable ideas and suggestions from members of Sony Pictures Entertainment (SPE), Sony Music Group (SMG) and Sony Interactive Entertainment (SIE), all of which are headquartered in the United States. For example, we received suggestions that we should make an 11-color logo including BIPOC (Black, Indigenous & People Of Color) and transgender representation to more accurately portray the LGBTQ+ community, and to make the letters in the logo themselves rainbow, instead of having rainbow colors around the logo. We also received feedback that, more than simply creating a rainbow-colored logo, it was vital for Sony to use it together with tangible support activities for the LGBTQ+ community."

Yamura describes the design challenges and solution:

"At the start of the project, we heard from representatives from Sony companies around the world that they wanted the new logo to serve the purpose of visualizing Sony's solidary with LGBTQ+ community, and that a logo with real thought and meaning behind the design would go a long way in showing Sony's support for its employees and the overall community. So, we were very motivated to come up with a good design. The 11-color logo includes black and white, so we had to adjust the colors so that the logo would not blend into the background or appear to have missing sections. Finally, we came up with the idea of incorporating color gradation, and we made numerous adjustments to the balance and appearance of each color, being very careful not to interfere with the meaning each one holds. We showed the finished design to the global representatives, and we were delighted to receive feedback that it was `lively and vivid' and that `the gradation of colors evokes a sense of inclusion.'"

The Pride Logo Around the World

(Left) The Sony Pride flag at the Munich office of Sony Pictures Entertainment Germany.
(Right) SPE, SEL, SIE and SMG participated in LA Pride in June this year.

The Pride Logo, which was designed in this way, is being used by Sony Group companies around the world.

The Sony Pride flag was raised at the Munich office of Sony Pictures Entertainment Germany this month. Michael Trinkle of Sony Pictures Entertainment in Germany, a member of the Employee Business Resource Group (EBRG), an employee group formed to promote diversity, said, "For the second year in a row, Sony Pictures Entertainment Germany is delighted and proud to raise the Sony Pride flag in front of the Munich building to show allyship and solidarity with the LGBTQ+ community around the globe. It underlines the efforts in addition to all activities initiated by the EBRG OUT EMEA taking place around this year's Pride month."

At Sony Nordic (Sweden), the Pride Logo is planned to be displayed online and at local offices to coincide with efforts to raise awareness in the months of July and August. Maria Hållö and Ann Louise Klotz, representatives from the Lund office, provided the following statement. "By informing about the logo, the intention behind it, and how to find more information we hope to inspire others to be an ally to promote the understanding of the LGBTQ+ communities. It's vital that we all feel welcome, accepted and included - much work remains to be done across the world; at Sony we are proud to be part of this journey."

In the USA, SPE, Sony Electronics (SEL), SIE, and SMG participated in LA Pride on June 11. Thousands of people lined the streets to attend the event, which was inspiring and encouraged many, including employees at Sony.

Joanna Saweczko, a member of the Group Human Resources Dept. Sony Group Corporation, which is responsible for promoting diversity throughout the Sony Group, reflected on the significance of the introduction of the Pride Logo:

"Instilling pride colors into our company logo is symbolic to me. It conveys the message that Sony stands with the LGTBQ+ community not only on Pride Month but all year long. Carrying the logo as we join our employees and communities in the vibrant pride celebrations, we proudly reaffirm that Sony values and celebrates the uniqueness of each and every individual."

Sony Group's commitment to supporting diversity through initiatives will continue to evolve.