By Daniel Etchells at the Hilton London Metropole Hotel

World Rugby replaces the International Rugby Board ©World RugbyThe 2014 International Rugby Board (IRB) World Rugby Conference and Exhibition (ConfEx) in London has concluded with the official unveiling of the logo and look of the governing body's new name, World Rugby. 

With rugby continuing to inspire and engage new audiences and players around the world, the launch is the culmination of a rebranding process undertaken with the assistance of FutureBrand, officials claimed. 

The new visual identity is being rolled out across the federation's portfolio of digital properties, including the new and @worldrugby platforms, and will make its event debut on match official jerseys this weekend.

"Global rugby participation has boomed by more than two million to 6.6 million players over the past four years, driven by the commercial success of the Rugby World Cup, World Rugby's development strategies and record investment, strong and vibrant unions and rugby's re-inclusion in the Olympic Games," said World Rugby chairman Bernard Lapasset. 

"Today's launch embodies our mission statement to grow the global rugby family beyond our traditional family and fan base and reflects the federation's evolution from rugby regulator to rugby inspirer."

The new expression of the brand, reflected in the revised name and visual identity, aims to deliver the federation's mission to build a stronger connection with fans, players and commercial partners, and ultimately engage new audiences worldwide, while retaining a link to the organisation's heritage through its blue and green colour scheme.

Launching the brand, World Rugby chief executive, Brett Gosper, said: "In an incredibly competitive global entertainment and sporting marketplace, rugby must continue to appeal to those who know and love the sport and its heritage, while attracting, engaging and inspiring those who have no connection with the sport across multiple cultures and languages around the world.

"Supported by a new name, a distinctive, optimistic and progressive new brand, and clear character-building values, World Rugby collectively has the ingredients and tools to do just that.

"We want everyone to feel connected with the sport and rugby's ongoing success story.

"Our new brand certainly stands out and enables us to promote our consumer-facing properties in a way that they will be more appealing and impactful to the sport's growing global fan base."

The rebrand will have no impact on the 2015 Rugby World Cup branding or positioning, which will remain as it is with its iconic logo throughout the current event cycle.

The announcement marked the end of a hugely successful World Rugby ConfEx, which brought together more than 700 delegates from 60 nations over two days of workshops and panel sessions.

Some of the biggest topics in rugby were covered from player welfare and integrity to the future of the Rugby World Cup and delivering a successful rugby sevens event at Rio 2016.