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brand news

In the News: T-Mobile, Blockbuster, W Hotels and more

Posted by Alicia Ciccone on March 25, 2013 09:46 AM

In the News

T-Mobile kills off wireless contract, readies to launch LTE network.

Gordon Brothers Europe agrees to buy struggling Blockbuster UK, saving 2,000 jobs and brand. 

W Hotels plans to double Asia presence over the next five years.

AstraZeneca settles Crestor patent suit.

Apple, Microsoft defend pricing policies in Australia.

Britain's BAE Systems wins five-year, $780 million US military contract.

BMW looks to Mini Paceman to challenge growing Fiat market.

Bridgestone launches new tire line to reignite Firestone brand.Continue reading...

brand news

In the News: Hostess, 5-Hour Energy, BP and more

Posted by Dale Buss on November 16, 2012 09:01 AM

In the News

Hostess Brands makes good on threat to to go out of business because of strike, selling off Wonder Bread, Twinkies, Ding Dongs and other iconic brands.

5-Hour Energy sees parent's bond ratings hurt by FDA probe into deaths as Rockstar is added to energy-drinks probe.

BP doesn't end brand woes with Gulf settlement as U.S. shifts toward holding individual executives responsible for disaster.

Apple sees stock hit by panic selling.

Applebee's introduces spirits-infused menu.

Burger King expands home-delivery test to Houston.Continue reading...

chew on this

Function or Emotion? Trident Switches Directions; Force Energy Gum Launches

Posted by Dale Buss on April 10, 2012 04:45 PM

Just as one of the world's biggest chewing-gum brands is launching a new appeal based more on emotion than functionality, a start-up gum brand is employing exactly the opposite tactic. Which one is right will be a whole lot clearer a few months from now.

Kraft's Trident brand is rolling out a new ad this week with the tagline "See What Unfolds," targeting the Millennial generation with what the brand, in a press release, called "a deeper and emotional connection."

Like other chewing-gum manufacturers, Trident has been emphasizing its products as delivery vehicles for practical benefits. Of late, Kraft had been emphasizing functional and even nutritional benefits of the various versions of Trident -- whiter teeth, vitamins, etc. Continue reading...

sip on this

Starbucks Boosts Brand with New Energy Drink and Corporate Citizenship

Posted by Mark J. Miller on March 22, 2012 04:27 PM

Energy drinks aren’t just boosting people’s bodies to push on to new heights. They are also seriously boosting the bottom line for plenty of companies. According to the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, Monster, Red Bull, and Rockstar all enjoyed "double-digit increases" last year.

So if you’re already a beverage company, it seems like a no-brainer to get into the energy drink space, right? That’s apparently the thinking at Starbucks, whose drinks already have a generally uplifting effect on consumers. As USA Today puts it, the coffee giant is entering “the $8 billion energy drink category” in April with “a new line of ‘natural’ energy drinks, Starbucks Refreshers” that according to the press release will be sold not just at Starbucks locations, but at groceries and convenience stores.

The Refreshers ready-to-drink line is based on “fruity, carbonated drink that's high in antioxidants” and use “unroasted, green coffee extract for the energy boost,” but won’t have any coffee taste, the paper reports. Flavors include raspberry pomegranate, orange melon and strawberry lemonade.Continue reading...

sip on this

Beverage Giants Ride Out Softening Soda Market

Posted by Mark J. Miller on March 21, 2012 03:01 PM

Soda makers have continued to expand their offerings over the past few years, which has been a smart move for business since soft-drink sales in America fell yet again in 2011, the Atlanta Journal-Constitution reports. That marks seven consecutive years where the numbers have spiraled downward.

While the market has slumped to 1996 levels, Coca-Cola continues to ride atop with Coke and Diet Coke topping third-place Pepsi, AJC notes. 

Beverage Digest has it that “volume for the carbonated drinks segment was down 1 percent in 2011,” which follows a “0.5 percent drop in 2010,” according to the paper. This sets industry volume back to where it was in 1996 at about 9.3 billion of 192-ounce cases.

Don’t shed a tear for the beverage giants, however. Non-carbonated drinks are doing just fine.Continue reading...

brand challengers

Snowboarders Refusing Energy-Drink Money to Push Water

Posted by Mark J. Miller on January 10, 2012 11:01 AM

Energy drinks are seemingly everywhere, particularly when it comes to marketing to younger audiences.

Industry leaders Red Bull, Monster Energy, and Rockstar have sunk some serious marketing dollars into the “international sports market, sponsoring athletes, events and video shoots in motorsports, surfing, snowboarding and skiing, mixed martial arts, and others,” according to the New York Times. Logos for the brands are appearing on athlete apparel and gear.

Two professional snowboarders had enough last year and started to make their own statement with a campaign, called "We Drink Water", against the energy-drink companies, including creating their own non-logo logo, “Drink Water,” on their boards. The slogan has taken off and now the two snowboarders, Bryan Fox and Austin Smith, have a website selling T-shirts ($30), sweatshirts ($60), jackets ($65), and sets of stickers and pins ($10).Continue reading...

5-Hour Energy Withstands Shots From Competitors

Posted by Dale Buss on February 17, 2010 05:51 PM

Over the last couple of years, major energy-drink brands have launched their own smaller, shot-style drinks to try to exploit the growing niche created by the success of 5-Hour Energy.

Now, however, the category is cluttered as Full Throttle, Amp, and other energy-drink stars have leapt into the shots business. While shot sales continue to climb strongly overall, standard energy-drink sales have dramatically leveled off – especially for some of the bigger brands that are trying to work both ends of the market.

Take Full Throttle, for example. Sales of its shot version rose more than 250 percent in supermarkets, drug stores, and mass merchants (except Wal-Mart stores) surveyed by Information Resources Inc. But sales of the mainstay Full Throttle energy drink declined by nearly 3 percent during the same period.Continue reading...

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