Red Dot: Agency of the Year 2021


The honorary title “Red Dot: Agency of the Year” is the highest accolade awarded in the international competition “Red Dot Award: Brands & Communication Design” for consistently high design achievements. This year, this special award goes to Cologne-based agency “denkwerk”, which has repeatedly won over the jury in recent years with its outstanding design accomplishments.

denkwerk with its own digital installation at the Red Dot Design Museum Essen

With the exhibition "World's Best Communication Design 2021-2022", the Red Dot Design Museum in Essen is showing award-winning works from the field of communication design from more than 30 countries from 8 April to 29 May 2022. From books to commercials and posters to apps, websites and packaging, visitors will experience the various facets of outstanding communication design in the exhibition.

denkwerk presents itself as Red Dot: Agency of the Year 2021 with a specially designed digital installation. By means of projection mapping, the agency's works are staged in a precise interplay between animation and projection surfaces in bright, radiant colours.

The opening of the exhibition took place on the evening of 7 April. Professor Dr. Peter Zec welcomed the guests and introduced the vernissage with a video selection of awarded communication design. Among the guests were several winners of the Red dot Award: Communication Design 2021 as well as the denkwerk team. 

More information on the special exhibition and the museum can be found here.

Success through creativity and digital expertise

The honorary title “Red Dot: Agency of the Year 2021” is this year going to one of Germany’s most creative agencies: denkwerk. Originally founded in Cologne in 1998 by Felix Hildebrand, Jörg Rheinboldt and Axel Schmiegelow, denkwerk today also has branches in Berlin, Hamburg and Munich. Under the direction of Jochen Schlaier and Marco Zingler, the owner-managed agency and its team of more than 200 creatives from 24 countries use their expertise to guide the digital transformation of leading brands and companies.

Pioneer in the new category “Digital Solutions”

With its approach, denkwerk continuously breaks new ground, aiming to enmesh transformation processes with the respective brand. In doing so, aspects such as strategy, design, technology and communication are connected at the highest level. Special attention is paid to the use of agile, autonomous teams in order to develop relevant products and cutting-edge experiences. denkwerk furthermore relies on specially created platforms to embed transformation in the customer company and make it sustainable. In this way, the agency succeeds in turning digital transformation and the associated challenges into a positive experience for companies.  

This year, denkwerk especially stood out from its competitors in the new Digital Solutions category.

Jochen Schlaier, Chief Creative Officer and Managing Director on the honorary title Red Dot: Agency of the Year

“It makes us proud and is a sensational success for our employees. It is a great feeling and a recognition of our work so far and everything we have done in this field.”

All awarded projects

The agency's success is also reflected in the numerous awards it has received in the Red Dot Award: Brands & Communication Design:

The honorary title "Red Dot: Agency of the Year" is awarded annually to an agency that has convinced the jury with outstanding design quality in the Red Dot Award. In doing so, the agency showed above-average design achievements either in the current competition or over several years. The following agencies have already been awarded the honorary title:

2021 denkwerk
2020 Interbrand
2019 KW43 Branddesign by Grey Germany
2018 Banda Agency
2017 thjnk
2016 Serviceplan
2015 Leo Burnett Deutschland
2014 Scholz & Friends
2013 Mutabor
2012 601 bisang
2011 beetroot
2010 BBDO
2009 KMS Team
2008 Strichpunkt