In 1989, he and his then-wife, Joan Spiekermann started FontShop, the first mail-order distributor for digital fonts. FontShop International followed and now publishes the FontFont range of typefaces. MetaDesign combined clean, teutonic-looking information design and complex corporate design systems for clients like BVG (Berlin Transit), Düsseldorf Airport, Audi, Volkswagen and Heidelberg Printing, amongst others.
In 2001, Spiekermann left MetaDesign over policy disagreements and started UDN | United Designers Networks with offices in Berlin, London, and San Francisco.
In April 2006, the Art Center College of Design in Pasadena awarded Spiekermann an Honorary Doctorship for his contribution to design. His family of typefaces for Deutsche Bahn (German Railways), designed with Christian Schwartz, received a Gold Medal at the German Federal Design Prize in 2006, the highest such award in Germany. In May 2007 he was the first designer to be elected into the European Design Awards Hall of Fame.
As of January 2007, UDN has been renamed SpiekermannPartners, and as of January 2009 it has been renamed Edenspiekermann. The currently operative offices are in Amsterdam, Berlin, San Francisco and Stuttgart.
Spiekermann is considered a very influential personality in the field of graphic design. He often attends international meetings, and has been giving a substantial contribution in several fields, such as app development and city plan.
Spiekermann has designed many commercial typefaces as well as typefaces as part of corporate design programmes.
- Berliner Grotesk (original is from 1913, digitization is from 1979)
- Lo-Type (original is from 1911/14, digitization is from 1980)
- ITC Officina Sans (1990)
- ITC Officina Serif (1990)
- FF Meta (1991–1998)
- FF Govan (2001)
- FF Info (2000)
- Nokia Sans (2002-2011, corporate typeface for Nokia and the default UI font for Symbian S60 smartphones)
- FF Unit (2003)
- FF Meta Serif (with Christian Schwartz and Kris Sowersby, 2007)
- FF Unit Slab (with Christian Schwartz and Kris Sowersby, 2009)
- Fira Sans (designed in collaboration with Ralph Carois) for Firefox OS, released in 2013 under the SIL Open Font License)
Spiekermann co-authored Stop Stealing Sheep & Find Out How Type Works. He also participated in the creation of numerous corporate identities and other works, including redesigns of the publications The Economist and Reason.
- 2003 – Gerrit Noordzij Prize
- 2006 – German Design Award
- 2007 – European Design Awards Hall of Fame
- 2007 – Honorary Royal Designer for Industry, Royal Society for the encouragement of Arts, Manufactures & Commerce, London
- 2011 – Lifetime achievement award from German Design Prize
- "Erik Spiekermann". EDAwards. 2006. Retrieved 2007-08-02.
- Hall of Fame
- Official press release
- Urban Age Electric City: Erik Spiekermann - Mapping and designing urban systems
- City of Amsterdam Sustainable city brand design
- Info Connectivity System
- Erik Spiekermann: MyFonts
- Erik Spiekermann’s typefaces at FontShop
- Fost, Dan (November 14, 2001). "Wired founder helps Reason". San Francisco Chronicle. Retrieved 2007-08-02.
- Erik Spiekermann, E. M. Ginger: Stop Stealing Sheep & Find Out How Type Works, third edition, Adobe Press, 2013. ISBN 978-0321934284
- Erik Spiekermann: ÜberSchrift, Hermann Schmidt Mainz, 2004, ISBN 3-87439-661-4
- Erik Spiekermann, Jan Middendorp, Made with FontFont, BIS Publishers, 2006, ISBN 90-6369-129-7
- Erik Spiekermann et al., FontBook, FontShop International Berlin, 2006
- Fay Sweet: MetaDesign: Design from the Word Up, Thames and Hudson, 1999. ISBN 0-500-01963-0
- Erik Spiekermann, M. Klein, Y. Schwemmer-Scheddin: Type and Typographers, Phaidon Press, 1991. ISBN 1-85454-848-4
- Emigre 51: First Things First, 1999. Issue 51
- Erik , Spiekermann, et al., Hello I am Erik: Erik Spiekermann : typographer, designer, entrepreneur, Gestalten, 2014. 9783899555196
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Erik Spiekermann.|
- Erik Spiekermann’s blog
- Biography and list of Spiekermann’s typefaces on FontFont.com
- Short autobiography/CV – PDF, written in his typeface FF Meta Serif
- Erik Spiekermann appears in the documentary Helvetica
- Postage stamps designed by Erik Spiekermann
- Erik Spiekermann on the founding of FontShop – video interview
- Erik Spiekermann on Workspiration – quick interview about work
- Erik Spiekermann on DesignChat – video interview