I was taking a scroll through the NBU's website this morning and stubbed my index finger on the headline "OFFICIAL DENIAL: The 1,000 Hryvnia Banknote Does Not Depict an Unlicensed Font", well now you have my attention! It appears that the NBU Had a minor controversy in regards to the font used on the new 1,000 UAH banknote released in October of last year. There were questions raised as to origin and use of the font on the reverse of the banknote, specifically the phrase "One Thousand hryvnia" (see below) and an Adobe copyrighted font called Bickham --script. The Cyrillic versions (see below) were published in 2016.
It's been a little difficult to follow but here is the gist of it, or at least as I understand it. Bickham --script was created in 1997 and licensed by Adobe, Bickham --script was then pirated by a well known Russian font thief who slightly modified it and passed off several versions as original, this stolen and modified font was then apparently found on the NBU Banknote Printing and Minting Works network and was used on the new Ukrainian 1,000 hyvnia banknotes, of which 5 million were printed. Supposedly Adobe confirmed the unlicensed use of the font but I have not been able to find an official statement from them. Now, these news stories are not from what I would call mainstream media outlets so I'm taking all of this info with a grain of salt but there was enough of an outcry that the NBU actually responded to the accusations. The NBU released an official statement basically claiming Multiple Discovery. In their statement the NBU explains that "all the images on the banknotes are author's graphics. Artists who work on their design do not use ready-made drawings or fonts. They themselves create vector graphic design elements, including the lettering of the denomination of the banknote." read the official denial from the NBU here https://bank.gov.ua/en/news/all/sprostuvannya-na-banknoti-1000-griven-nemaye-nelitsenzovanogo-shriftu .
Stories like these are one of the reasons I really enjoy collecting the notes and coins of Ukraine, it's like the wild west over there. I have to think that this is not the first time a question has been raised in regards to the font used on a banknote. Not necessarily from Ukraine but in general from all countries, feel free to let me know of any examples. You can bet I'll be paying attention to the next series of 1,000 Hryven banknotes to see if anything changed.
Hmmmm, my photog skills suck.
The 1,000 Hryven Banknote was one of 22 nominated for note of the year (2019) by the International Bank Note Society. The Central Bank of Aruba was awarded the top prize for their 100 Florin bill.