LONDON: Sanofi Aventis, the pharmaceutical giant, took the Grand Prix at the DBA Design Effectiveness Awards 2009, for the Solostar, a disposable pen injector for insulin it developed with DCA Design International.

A total of 13 Golds, 17 Silvers and 22 Bronzes were distributed at the Design Business Association's annual ceremony, which is now in its twentieth year, and aims to "recognise, reward and promote the integral role effective design plays in the creation of business growth."

Some 35 agencies made the shortlist for the event, for projects in areas ranging from retail, consumer electronics and FMCG to sport and media.

The Solostar, which also received a Gold and the International Export Award, revolutionised its category by providing patients with a 30% higher dose of insulin than any comparable device, in a way that was both safe and simple.

Following its launch in 2007, the product quickly became one of the leading players in its market, and also delivered over 40% of all sector growth during the course of 2008.

Among the other Gold winners was Serum 7, a  new pharmacy skincare brand developed by Alliance Boots and Creative Leap.

Despite having no above-the-line support, and being the first offering from the Boots Laboratories master brand, Serum 7 acquired a 7% category share in France within two months, and followed this up with a similarly successful introduction in Portugal.

Elmwood picked up two Golds, the first of which was for its work helping Durex, owned by SSL International, reposition its brand from one which focused on "safe sex" to basing its message around "better sex".

This included developing the brand identity and "look and feel" of the Durex portfolio, and contributed to a sales increase of 9.4% in the first year, as well as generating a considerable amount of free media coverage.

The brand design consultancy's second such prize was for Debbie & Andrew's premium sausages, where it refreshed the brand and its packaging, giving them a more "personal" feel.

Annual sales rose by more than 100% in 2008, a period in which two major competitors both posted declines, including large upticks in major supermarket chains like Sainsbury's and Tesco.

Vivid Brands achieved the same honour for its activity on behalf of Philips, the electronics group, in the lightbulb segment, for stimulating consumer engagement in a low-interest category.

Using only in-store communications, it effectively demonstrated how choosing energy-saving bulbs could make a real difference to the environment, boosting sales and market share as a result.

Other Gold winners included 20|20, for its efforts on behalf of Cook & Lewis, B&Q's kitchen brand, The Team for the Gas Safe Register, Purple Circle for BeWILDerwood, the adventure park, and Coley Porter Bell for Fairview Cheese.

Good Creative obtained a Gold for Equal Exchange, a fairtrade brand, as did Lewis Moberly for Lotus Caramelised Biscuits and PDD Group for the UnoMeter Safeti Plus catheter bag.

All the case studies from the DBA Design Effectiveness Awards 2009, and a selection from previous years, will soon be available on Warc.

For more information about the Design Business Association, click here.

Data sourced from DBA; additional content by Warc staff