brands under fire
Posted by Sheila Shayon on May 23, 2013 01:54 PM
Almost one month to the day after the Rana Plaza garment factory collapsed in Bangladesh killing 1,127 people, American retailers and their international counterparts remain at odds over the plan to improve labor conditions, with legal liability still at the top of US concerns.
Gap, one of the largest American retailers implicated in industry accidents in Bangladesh has said in recent weeks that it was close to signing the proposed agreement, if only clauses regarding arbitration were removed. “In the United States, there’s maybe a bigger legal risk than there is in Europe,” said Gap CEO Glenn Murphy, according to The New York Times. “If we were to sign onto something that had unlimited legal liability and risk, I think our shareholders should care about that.” Calling the language of the agreement "vague and unclear," Gap, along with Walmart, Target, JCPenney, Sears and other major US retailers have bilked at signing the accord, despite the fact that over 30 global brands had signed on by the proposed May 15 deadline.Continue reading...
sip on this
Posted by Dale Buss on May 23, 2013 12:38 PM
It didn't work for JCPenney. But will a new strategy on pricing work for PepsiCo?
PepsiCo said that it's adjusting its pricing strategy for its drinks in some sections of the United States in an effort to wean consumers off the habit of buying soda only when it's on sale, Reuters reported. Pepsi's "Hybrid Everyday Value" strategy involves narrowing the gap between soda prices on holidays and regular days by cutting discounts on holidays. With Memorial Day approaching, there's no better time for PepsiCo teo see if this new approach migh work.
Under the new plan, the price for a 12-pack of 12-ounce cans of Pepsi would settle somewhere between $2.50, which is how low it can get now with holiday discounting, and $5.99, which is about as high as the current "everyday" price gets.Continue reading...
Posted by Mark J. Miller on May 23, 2013 11:37 AM
Jennifer Lopez may be the most powerful Hispanic in the entertainment business. Selling more than 75 million records and appearing in films that have grossed more than $2 billion can do that for a person. Recently, J.Lo has been taking her star power over to the business world.
Her latest title is as the majority owner of a new chain of 15 cell phone stores aimed directly at Latinos, Variety reports. Viva Movil will sell Verizon phones and services, with the first retail outpost opening in New York on June 15. Other cities with large Latino populations will follow after that. This isn't just another brand ambassador gig for Lopez; she’s the majority owner and chief creative officer. (This means she’ll be very busy since she also signed on this past fall as chief creative officer of Nuvo TV, an English language TV network targeted at Latinos.)
"It was a no-brainer to finally cater to an overlooked segment of the population that has emerged, to actually do something that caters specifically to them," Lopez told the L.A. Times.Continue reading...
Posted by Dale Buss on May 23, 2013 10:39 AM
The US Army wants to show potential recruits what it means to be "Army Strong." Just as the largest branch of the American military has pretty much stayed apace with advertising genres in the four decades since it became an all-volunteer force, the Army is now launching a reality-type branded-content TV series to relay that message in a different and thorough way.
Enlisting actor Ricky Schroder and his production company, the US Army has produced "Starting Strong," a series that follows 10 young men and women visiting Army installations such as Fort Bragg and Fort Sam Houston and finding out from soldiers about different military occupational specialties as they consider whether to join the force, according to the New York Times.
"We still have to advertise," Mark Davis, deputy assistant secretary of the Army for marketing, told the newspaper. "Everything's changing, and we can't depend on TV commercials, print and radio anymore." As the young people who are its recruiting targets increasingly "watch TV for content" and avoid commercials, he said, "we had to find a way to become content."Continue reading...
Posted by Dale Buss on May 23, 2013 09:15 AM
PepsiCo rethinks soda pricing strategy in the US.
Discovery plans to launch online video network.
Sergio Garcia catches serious heat from sponsors Adidas, TaylorMade after Woods "chicken" comment.
Borders customers are stuck with their gift cards, judge rules.
ESPN layoffs show network's vulnerability.
Equal sweetens its look.
Ford plans to exit manufacturing in Australia as it launches new marketing campaign for Europe.
GE weighs selling off large parts of financing arm.Continue reading...
Posted by Sheila Shayon on May 22, 2013 07:36 PM
It's graduation time and many of those college graduates are moving back in with their original roommates—their parents.
Bloomberg Businessweek is targeting twenty-somethings with a campaign encouraging those ‘boomerang kids’ to head-out on their own with the lure of a one-year subscription to the magazine. The “Bloomberg Businessweek Gets You Ahead” campaign website offers 42 e-gift cards that parents and friends can send to Gen Y-ers still living at home for an added kick in the behind—and a good laugh.Continue reading...
sip on this
Posted by Dale Buss on May 22, 2013 07:07 PM
Nespresso may have invented the single-serve capsule coffee machine in 1986, but obviously it's gotten plenlty of company in that arena since then. While the Nestle-owned brand sees lots of growth potential around the world, executives have selected two particular targets for—the United States and China—that won't yield new sales as easily as Nespresso got them in building its original business in Europe.
Two aspects of its business make Nespresso stand out from other competitors such as Green Mountain, the US-based purveyor of K-Cups that has been allying with Starbucks lately. First, Nespresso's business model is direct-to-consumer, not making its pods available on grocery-store shelves, and second, Nespresso leadership actually sees huge remaining growth opportunities in Europe despite the continent's struggle with recession.
"The potential is big" in the UK, Italy, Germany and Russia, where household penetration by Nespresso machines is only about one-fifth of that in coffee-slaking France, Nespresso CEO Jean-Marc Duvoisin told the Wall Street Journal.Continue reading...
long arm of the law
Posted by Barry Silverstein on May 22, 2013 06:25 PM
Airbnb, an online booking service that allows anybody to rent out any premises for as little as a night, sounds like a great idea that leverages the "sharing economy.” Investors think Airbnb is pretty slick too: Two years ago, the San Francisco company was valued at over a billion dollars and today its value has more than doubled.
But is Airbnb about to experience a crash landing? A judge in New York City has just ruled that an Airbnb user broke an “illegal hotel” law when Nigel Warren rented out the bedroom of his apartment in the East Village for three days. The law “restricts residents from renting out apartments, or rooms in them, for fewer than 30 days, unless they are also living in the home during the guests’ stay.”
Airbnb representatives appeared in court along with Warren, arguing that “certain language” in the code allowed him to make the room available to a renter. But judge Clive Morrick indicated that “Airbnb renters did not have access to all parts of the apartment, specifically the room of Mr. Warren’s roommate, who was still living there while Mr. Warren was away and renting out his room.”Continue reading...