Winners 2019

Best annual report – listed organisation

Generating value from innovation
Agency: Jones & Palmer

Arix operates within a complex industry. The venture capital business invests in and builds biotech companies making cutting-edge advances in life science. Its annual report needs to describe how these companies are developing in order to attract the attention of big pharma, while also making sure that its operations can be understood by all stakeholders.

To make matters even more complicated, Arix was keen that its annual report worked in an online format – especially as this was its first online report since its initial public offering in 2017. This meant that some key pages needed to be modified to work online, such as the ‘At a glance’ section which contained a pie chart in the printed version. Designers Jones & Palmer needed to implement click and reveal functionality, which also allowed the diagram to reveal in stages – making it clear that each distinct area needs to be reviewed.

The ‘At a glance’ section is further broken down, into composite parts such as ‘Differentiated proposition’ and ‘global reach and NAV’ to ensure that the report can be read easily on a mobile device.

This deference to different devices is obvious throughout the report. In the printed version, the ‘Business model’ section features three aspects – ‘how we source’, how we create value’ (discover, evaluate, invest, develop, exit) and ‘outcome’. Online, while ‘how we source’ and ‘outcome’ remain unchanged, the ‘how we create value’ section is interactive, offering more information on each stage by simply tapping the heading.

Online, white space, sliders and hover states are used to emphasise content and make it more accessible. Interactive features, such as clicking on a plus symbol to draw out more information, are scattered throughout the report. For example, the overview section of the Oncology Report carries symbols that encourage users to click around to discover which portfolio companies target cancer cells.

The judges felt that the design simplified a ‘very complex and dry subject’ and that the online version, which has an average duration of seven minutes, was both accessible and easy to navigate. ‘This is a clear and focused report,’ they said.