What happened: Product Ventures announced today that their recent work on the product design of Westcott’s iPoint Evolution Pencil Sharpener has been honored with the prestigious Good Design™ Award, in the office products category, from the Chicago Athenaeum, Museum of Architecture and Design. Good Design™, founded in 1950, is one of the oldest and most esteemed design competitions, and includes submissions from the world’s most prominent designers and manufacturers, for their work in advancing new, visionary and innovative product concepts. This award sets the highest standards for the best, most advanced design in products, branding and graphics.

The new iPoint design is a great example of the elegant and natural evolution of an already successful product: the original iPoint. Transparent and graceful, the new design elevates an otherwise ubiquitous product to a ‘desk-worthy’ and trendy accessory. The experience of sharpening now becomes desirable and engaging. Product Ventures worked on this design with Acme United, making it a stand-out example of innovation, in continuing the aesthetics developed within the iPoint family line of pencil sharpeners.

Why it matters: Research shows that whatever company creates a new ‘brand category’ usually ends up the market leader for a very long time. A simple listing of category makers prove this theory:

Theme park — Disney

Soft drink — Coca Cola 

Overnight delivery — FedEx 

MP3 / Phone — Apple iPod / iPhone

Online bookstore — Amazon.com

So congratulations to Product Ventures and Westcott’s iPoint Evolution Pencil Sharpener! Now what needs to happen is a strategic brand marketing campaign to make this the new class of pencil sharpeners. That may be the hardest part of all.