42. 3M

Year Company Founded: 1902

Year Logo Introduced: 1906

Logo Designer: Gerald Stahl & Associates (1961), Siegel &Gale (1978)

Company Founders: Henry S. Bryan, Harmon W. Cable, John Dawn, William A. McGonagle, J. Danley Budd

The first 3M logo was introduced in 1906, and it featured a black diamond shape inside two rings. The outer band read "Minnesota Mining and MFG Co." while the black diamond shape had "3M co" written diagonally and horizontally. The next evolution of the 3M logo occured in 1950, when it was reduced to a logotype of "3M Company." The 1950 design kept the black-on-white design and the circular outline around the brand name, but this logo was much more distinctive and pushed the 3M brand name as the focus.

In 1961, 3M hired Gerald Stahl Associates to modernize their logo. The lettering became more angular, a common approach to modernization, but the company moved away from the black to a light blue. The brand name stayed distinctive, but the design was updated. In 1978, 3M introduced the red bold logo which remains in use to this day. "Company" was removed, and only "3M" remained to represent the brand. Developed by Siegel & Gale, the 1978 design is the most distinctive, with no elements distracting from the brand which plays a part in the iconic nature of the logo.

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