Latham & Watkins annually produces a comprehensive report authored by partners from their Mergers and Acquisition and Private Equity teams, known as the Private Market Study. This pivotal document serves to illuminate significant events of the year past and forecast crucial milestones for the future.
In 2023, I assumed the role of Lead Creative with the objective of showcasing the prowess of Latham's in-house creative team, thereby eliminating reliance on third-party agencies. The initial phase involved a thorough evaluation of the previous report, identifying areas of strength and opportunities for enhancement. This included a detailed analysis of workflows, with a focus on streamlining processes and suggesting improvements.
My approach was rooted in simplicity and data-driven storytelling. I advocated for allowing the data to dictate the narrative, emphasizing the importance of achieving impactful design with minimal embellishment.
The previous report, now in its ninth edition, suffered from a lack of clarity in presenting data. Graphs were overly similar, leading to confusion, and there was inconsistent use of colors throughout.
Moving forward, the aim was to revitalize the report by implementing a more cohesive design strategy, ensuring that data was presented in a clear and intuitive manner. By harnessing the power of data-driven storytelling and embracing minimalist design principles, the new iteration of the Private Market Study aimed to deliver a more compelling and accessible narrative for stakeholders.
To secure the partners' support, we dedicated considerable effort to showcasing the potential of effective data visualization. Through our presentation, we illustrated diverse approaches to portraying the same narrative, employing iconography, carefully chosen and consistent color schemes, and integrating photography into the design.
Although photography didn't progress beyond the initial stage, the partners expressed a strong desire to delve deeper into the innovative concepts introduced. This enthusiastic response spurred us to further explore and refine these ideas, demonstrating our commitment to pushing the boundaries of traditional reporting methods and embracing novel approaches to visual storytelling.
In the second round, we honed the design even further. This time, the team delved into the possibilities of expanding the report to 12 or even 16 pages, departing from the previous 8-page format. The objective was to explore how additional space could be utilized to amplify the impact of key data narratives.
Our concepts demonstrated the potential of dedicating entire pages to spotlighting critical stories within the data. By embracing a more expansive format, we were able to delve deeper into insights and provide a more comprehensive overview of the market landscape. This approach not only enhanced the visual appeal of the report but also allowed for a more nuanced exploration of the subject matter, ultimately elevating the overall quality of the publication.
In the third round, we introduced a lighter shade of grey to the inner pages, a strategic move that allowed us to incorporate blue as a primary color rather than relegating it to a background role. This adjustment provided a fresh perspective and enhanced visual depth to the report. Additionally, white emerged as a powerful component of the palette, adding clarity and sophistication to the overall design scheme. By carefully refining our color choices, we achieved a harmonious balance that elevated the aesthetic appeal and readability of the publication.
For the final version, we had access to the report data and the stakeholders wanted to explore a lot of the findings for the year. This meant having to find creative ways to have a lot of visuals in only 8 pages.

However, the result worked and I was able to introduce several new ways to visualise the data and story that hadn't been tried in any of the previous reports. 
To launch the report, I worked with the LATHAM & WATKINS SOCIAL MEDIA TEAM TO DEVELOP SOME NEW ASSETS THAT MATCHED THE REPORT. TAKING advantage of Linkedin's preview we designed each part of a carousel to be independent and work together as a whole s in a 2 by 3 arrangement. The challenge here was any overlapping elements on the bottom row needed to be designed 33% smaller.

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