Posted by Dale Buss on December 5, 2013 09:22 AM
Ford introduces new Mustang today as global vehicle.
Apple and China Mobile sign deal to sell iPhone as Carl Icahn softens stance on Apple's cash.
GM drops Chevrolet from mainstream European market and sells remaining stake in Ally.
AT&T and T-Mobile weigh bids for Verizon wireless spectrum.
Facebook admits organic reach is falling short and urges marketers to buy ads.
Fox says Super Bowl ad inventory is sold out.
FTC is perplexed after native-ad workshop.
General Mills is pouring Cheerios into the Super Bowl.
JCPenney sacrifices profit in volume push.Continue reading...
Posted by Mark J. Miller on December 4, 2013 07:47 PM
Michael Kors and Gwyneth Paltrow have long been pals, and now they’ve paired up in the hopes that their friendship will inspire an exclusive holiday collection of apparel and accessories.
Kors and Paltrow have released three limited-edition pieces on Paltrow’s lifestyle site, GOOP.com, including a cashmere cape that will run you $2,595, a merino peplum sweater and a jazzed-up peacoat. Also available on the site are “accessories hand-picked by the pair from Kors’ existing offerings, including aviator sunglasses and a calf leather tote,” according to the New York Post.
“I thought it would be wonderful to reinvent some of my favorite vintage Michael Kors looks that I have kept for years, that I wear over and over,” said Paltrow.Continue reading...
Posted by Mark J. Miller on December 4, 2013 07:02 PM
If you’re idea of luxury is to get on a plane that has seats that lie flat so you can sleep, United may be your new airline of choice. The airline has just redesigned 15 of its Boeing 757-200s to offer such service along with extra legroom for those flying out of New York’s John F. Kennedy International Airport en route to Los Angeles or San Francisco.
United claims that it’s the first to offer such options on these “Premium Service routes,” Mediapost reports. The spruced-up planes also have “in-flight WiFi along with personal, on-demand entertainment at every seat as well as power outlets and USB ports at every seat.”
"Our investment in these aircraft and in the p.s. service will add greatly to our flyer-friendly customer experience on these coast-to-coast flights," said Jeff Foland, United's executive vice president of marketing, technology and strategy, in a press release. "This is just one more example of the many things we are doing to provide greater onboard comfort and convenience on every United flight."Continue reading...
chew on this
Posted by Dale Buss on December 4, 2013 06:27 PM
Applebee's is following Chili's example and introducing tablet computers to each table in its 1,860 US restaurants. Patrons will still order from and be served their main courses by waiters and waitresses, but the tablets are expected to improve things at the margins of the restaurant experience—where profits are most won and lost.
The 7-inch screens will allow customers to order appetizers and desserts, pay their bills, and even play video games. The tablet gambit is aimed largely at Millennials who are expecting restaurants to offer improved technologies, USA Today said.
The goal isn't to replace human staffers but to free them to focus more fully on serving the table, NRN.com said. Applebee's doesn't currently plan any staff reductions because of the tablet installation.Continue reading...
license to thrill
Posted by Mark J. Miller on December 4, 2013 05:41 PM
Rogers Communications just agreed to spend $4.93 billion over the next 12 years to broadcast the NHL in Canada. Now the company has announced that it is going to pay up to put its name atop the home of the NHL’s Edmonton Oilers, according to the Associated Press. The deal will reportedly last for a decade.
With this deal, Rogers burnishes its spot as Canada’s biggest corporate name in sports. It already has naming-rights deals with the Toronto Blue Jays, which it also owns, and the Vancouver Canucks as well as with the Canadian Football League’s Toronto Argonauts. The Oilers arena bearing the Rogers name won’t open until 2016 and Rogers executive vice-president John Boynton promises that it will be on technology’s cutting edge, the Edmonton Journal reports. Fans might even to be able to order “food and drink from the seats.”Continue reading...
Posted by Dale Buss on December 4, 2013 04:43 PM
Sometimes it seems like almost no one likes Abercrombie & Fitch anymore, and the chain's sliding sales and brand equity reflect that. Now there's an important someone who doesn't like Abercrombie CEO Michael Jeffries either.
Activist investor Engaged Capital has just asked the Abercrombie board to start looking for a replacement for the embattled Jeffries, whose employment contract expires Feb. 1, according to the Wall Street Journal. The fund also suggested that maybe the Abercrombie board might want to go ahead and sell the company to a private-equity buyer as "the best option for shareholders."
The new pressure comes at a difficult time for Abercrombie & Fitch, which may finally be jumping the shark. It posted nearly $12 million in losses for the nine months of 2013, with sales down more than 7 percent. And it's facing a hostile environment this holiday shopping season with such a heavily promotional edge to most apparel retailing.Continue reading...
Posted by Dale Buss on December 4, 2013 03:58 PM
Maybe November wasn't such a turkey after all—for JCPenney, at least. The still-beleaguered retailer reported a 10 percent increase in comparable-store sales for the month, thanks to a strong Black Friday and, presumably, the conclusion by American consumers that the brand isn't dead just yet.
While most retailers have bemoaned the overall results of Thanksgiving weekend and aren't sure their promotional aggressiveness will serve them much better this month, JCPenney reported that its online sales were strong. Notably, it was the second consecutive month for which the retailer reported comparable-store sales, according to TheStreet.com, after dropping monthly reports two years ago.
And JCPenney CEO Myron Ullman took a minute to crow, sort of. "We are pleased with our performance over the Thanksgiving holiday weekend, particularly in light of the continued spending pressures on consumers," he said in a press release. "The combination of our great merchandise and compelling promotions put us in a position to succeed in a highly competitive environment, and our teams executed very well."Continue reading...
video killed the _____ star
Posted by Mark J. Miller on December 4, 2013 02:56 PM
Netflix, the streaming leader in the US, has made a big business out of binge-viewing. But the service's next series release will go a little differently.
Dreamworks Animation is producing Netflix’s first animated kid series, Turbo FAST, which it is set to launch Dec. 24, but the first episode will only come with four others simultaneously available to consumers. The other 21 shows scheduled for the first season will be released in bits and pieces along the way, much like a regular TV show.
“Production on animation is [on a] different timetable so we chose to make the episodes that are ready now, available for viewers as they were ready,” Netflix chief communications officer Jonathan Friedland, told Variety.
But have no fear, binge-watchers: just because Netflix is slowing its roll with Turbo FAST doesn't mean others will follow suit. The next season of Lillyhammer, for instance, will debut on Dec. 13 with all eight episodes ready to watch.Continue reading...