Posted by Dale Buss on May 3, 2013 10:22 AM
Bill Ford Jr. long has been the environmental visionary for Ford Motor Co. and, arguably, one of the "greenest" minds in the global auto business. So it's no surprise that he has emerged as a leading figure in the rising interest in self-driving automobiles and in the debate over what role they might have in the urban-transportation networks of the future.
As much as Ford's scion and executive chairman already has led the company to a forward position in many areas of sustainability—green manufacturing operations, some of the first mainstream hybrids, a fuel-economic product line— Ford Jr. now must help the company and the industry adapt to an era in which everyone seems really eager to take driving functions away from fallible humans and give them to computers in a modern car that, as Ford put it, "is really becoming a rolling group of sensors."
Interested parties range from Ford and other auto makers, to governments, to digital giants such as Google. "The car as we know it, and how it's used in people's lives, is going to change really dramatically and it's going to change fast," Ford said at the annual Milken Global Conference in Los Angeles this week (watch his session below).Continue reading...
Posted by Dale Buss on May 1, 2013 10:34 AM
Three heavyweights of American industrialism were among those who spoke at a Fortune's Brainstorm Green conference, and they had a lot to say about what they're doing to make their companies more sustainable.
GM CEO Dan Akerson, Procter & Gamble CEO Bob McDonald, and General Mills CEO Kendall Powell each held forth at the sustainability-focused confab.
Akerson was the most newsworthy. He is genuinely fond of the Chevrolet Volt and will defend it against all comers, Akerson threw a potential trump card on the table against critics of GM's groundbreaking plug-in hybrid who believe it's way too expensive for whatever environmental benefits it yields, especially given all the federal-government subsidies it gets: The company plans a price cut of $7,000 to $10,000 on the "next generation" of the car and even plans for Volt "to be profitable," Akerson said.Continue reading...
Posted by Sheila Shayon on March 11, 2013 03:30 PM
SXSW epitomizes how the cutting-edge becomes the status quo and eventually (but not yet) borders on the edge of passé. This year, “the event has a different feel, nearly as much a marketing event as it is about tech,” notes Digiday.
The week-long festival in Austin, Texas is ever more a breeding ground for flashy campaigns, giveaways and concerts, a far cry from the festival's roots as a geeky tech meet-up. Brian Solis, principal analyst at Altimeter Group told CNET, "The original posse is probably aghast at what [SXSW] has turned into." While there is still plenty of tech and start up presence, the event is now, more than ever, a joint digital venture between the marketing teams of the biggest brands and emerging tech stars peddling cool products and innovations.Continue reading...
Posted by Mark J. Miller on February 18, 2013 12:44 PM
Across the globe, people everywhere are pulling out their cell phones and tablets and e-readers—in buses and trains, in hallways and doorways, on beaches and ski lifts, in bedrooms and in bathrooms. Everywhere, the world is turning to look at mobile devices. Those devices may be getting all the attention out in the world, but the mobile world is much deeper than that, of course, and will have many ramifications for how the world lives.
The mobile world will be taking a close look at itself when the annual Mobile World Congress opens in Barcelona on Feb. 25th. To kick things off, the mobile world’s major association, the GSMA, will showcase how it expects mobile will change in the future by building a “Connected City” that expands on last year's connected house exhibit by featuring everything from a town hall, department store, and apartment to an electrical store, hotel, cafe and lounge, and a car showroom, among other things. With each location, different brands and innovations will be featured.
At MWC's fully connected city street, AT&T will showcase how people can manage their energy consumption and home security. Deutsche Telekom and IBM will show off how their using mobile help create better public transportation as well as energy, security and water management. Aston Martin will show off a bike that features embedded sensors that communicate with an on-board computer to help athletes get a slew of data on how they are performing.Continue reading...
Posted by Sheila Shayon on September 7, 2012 05:34 PM
Technology and creativity are fusing to drive a new interdependence between two seemingly diverse business disciplines, the CIO and the CMO.
According to Gartner, by 2017 the head of marketing — not the head of technology — will have greater influence on technology purchases. Gartner predicted earlier this year that chief marketing officers would soon spend more on technology than chief information officers.
Anticipating that shift, IBM has just launched a new set of services targeting CMO’s and CIO’s to augment engagement with increasingly savvy and empowered customers. CMOs can now target customers as individuals instead of clustering them within vague demographic categories — a vital approach, as social media has also made the CMO responsible for building an internal employee culture that represents the company's brand in online interactions.
IBM will rapidly assess a business's current needs against future marketing vision, conduct a gap analysis to evaluate which of the future capabilities are currently supported through existing business architecture and then determine the new processes, technology, data, skills, and governance required for the transformation strategy. IBM will design customized roadmaps for clients built on industry-leading techniques and methodologies developed in worldwide client engagements.Continue reading...
Posted by Sheila Shayon on July 31, 2012 11:58 AM
UPS is one of only 10 U.S. corporations to receive an A+ for superior transparency from companies registered with the Global Reporting Initiative (GRI) .
"One of the guiding principles to UPS's sustainability strategy is our commitment to transparency," UPS Chairman and CEO Scott Davis wrote in the organization's just-released 2011 Sustainability Report. "We are disclosing more information than ever... We have reported our five-year progress, successes and challenges. Now, we are focused ahead."
The report shows that UPS exceeded four of seven key sustainability goals established for 2011 including employee safety, auto accident frequency, aircraft emissions and full-time employee retention.Continue reading...
Posted by Sheila Shayon on June 11, 2012 09:55 AM
Even rock bands like Pearl Jam are turning to UPS for logistics help in sustainability. The brand recently partnered with UPS to devise a carbon-reducing transportation strategy for its 20th anniversary tour. It's all in a day's work for Arnold Barlow, Senior Manager of Sustainability Solutions for UPS’s Customer Solutions group, and his colleagues.
“UPS delivers 16 million packages a day, 3 billion annually,” says Barlow, who spoke about "Innovations in Sustainable Packaging" at last week's Sustainable Brands conference in San Diego (for which brandchannel was a sponsor), about the sheer scope of what UPS faces daily. “About three or four years ago, customers using our test lab in Chicago began asking us about which packaging materials were the most sustainable. We didn’t have the expertise, so we took it upon ourselves to become experts.”
Arnold told us about the company's journey to today’s status as a leader in sustainable packaging and his role as steward of the brand’s Eco Responsible Packaging Program.Continue reading...
tech in the spotlight
Posted by Sheila Shayon on March 7, 2012 02:30 PM
The South by Southwest festival is eighteen years young, and more than 20,000 are expected to attend this week in Austin, where the SXSW Interactive and Film conferences kick off on Friday. The festival has grown from its alternative roots as a confab for a tightknit group of musicians and fans who flocked to Texas to catch the next Michelle Shocked to encompass corporate sponsors and corporate types. It's now a must-attend mainstream event and a hotbed of innovation, which makes it a must-attend for companies in the digital and tech space, especially startups.
"Some people tend to think of 'South By' as more of a [consumer-facing] event where the next big thing like Twitter gets launched. But you have a lot of B2B brands setting up booths next to B2Cs. You'll go to a panel and see the head of marketing for Adobe sitting next to Pepsi on stage. That's what makes it great," said Jesse Noyes of Eloqua. "Unlike other conferences, it's where you can get in front of both up-and-coming and established players. You want to be in that."
Twitter made an explosive debut at SXSW in 2007, followed by Gowalla and Foursquare in 2009. Last year Apple stole the spotlight with its pop-up iPad store, and this year’s star contenders include ‘people discovery’ applications Highlight and Glancee.Continue reading...