brands under fire
Posted by Dale Buss on February 15, 2013 06:14 PM
Crises beget winners as well as losers. One of the winners seems to be Ian Davis—if you can call leaping from the frying pan into the fire a way of coming out on top.
The non-executive chairman of BP has been hired by another stalwart of UK business, Rolls-Royce, to help the embattled luxury-car brand deal with allegations of possible bribery by some of its people overseas.
Davis has had experience dealing with "challenging situations" like the one facing Rolls-Royce. In fact, Davis was chairman of BP's Gulf of Mexico Committee, which was in charge of the energy company's overall, long-term response to the 2010 Deepwater Horizons disaster in the Gulf.
It's taken a lot of advertising (and an Olympics sponsorship) by BP, a $4.5 billion fine and billions more in outlays for cleanup in Gulf states, but BP seems to have survived the disaster—and Rolls-Royce believes Davis had a lot to do with it. Continue reading...
Posted by Dale Buss on January 11, 2013 12:08 PM
American consumers may have a hitch in their gait and feel worn down, but they're still arguably the most reliable engine powering the global economy these days. The latest example comes from Rolls-Royce: U.S. luxury customers returned to their previous status as the world's largest market for one of the ultimate brands in automobiles last year, overtaking China as sales growth cooled there.
Overall, the luxury brand reported great news for 2012: It was a record year for Rolls-Royce Motor Car vehicles, with worldwide sales rising to 3,575 units. It was its third straight year of global growth, with the only negative that sales rose only by one percent, a growth rate much slower than the previous two years.
But considering that Rolls-Royce — like other auto-luxury brands — was battling a cooling of the market in China, a challenging European market and continued pressure on upscale buyers in the United States, the 2012 performance was satisfying enough to Rolls-Royce brass. "We had an outstanding year in spite of the challenges we faced, and Rolls-Royce now leads the ultra luxury market by some considerable margin," CEO Torsten Muller-Otvos said, according to Reuters.
"We are the pinnacle of all luxury brands in the world," he told CNBC. "We are interested in constant growth over the years to come, but sustainable growth." Continue reading...
Posted by Dale Buss on December 6, 2012 09:01 AM
Apple plans limited US manufacturing as it lands back in court with Samsung and baffles Eric Schmidt.
Starbucks agrees to pay more UK tax, capitulating to criticism.
Rolls-Royce is caught in bribery probe in UK.
AmEx works on social engagement that closes the loop with consumers.
AT&T is on track for record smartphone sales.
Barclays Africa is sold to Absa in $2.1 billion transaction.
Bob Marley trademark spat settled as 'relaxation drink' comes under fire.
Deutsche Bank is probed by SEC.
Dish will start selling mobile phones at its Blockbuster movie rental stores.Continue reading...
Posted by Dale Buss on December 4, 2012 09:01 AM
Microsoft denied "Killer Instinct" trademark, as Microsoft-Google patent fight rests on "fairness" definition and Motorola is denied injuction against Microsoft in patent suit. Microsoft-Intel push to combat Apple in tablet space, meanwhile, seen as "sputtering."
American Suzuki forges ahead with incentives amid US wind down.
Apple wins six new design patents, sees increasing pricing tension with retailers and Steve Jobs bio pic starring Ashton Kutcher heading to Sundance.
Applebee's plans to open "green" restaurant in New York's Harlem where Hot Bread Kitchen is a rising local brand.
Balenciaga hires designer Alexander Wang as creative chief.
Baxter agrees to buy medical-equipment maker Gambro in company's biggest acquisition.Continue reading...
Posted by Barry Silverstein on September 18, 2012 11:56 AM
London may have been the Olympic city this past summer, but it was also "Audi City." The German luxury car brand launched its first digital showroom in London, just in time for the Olympics, pitching it in a movie-style trailer. The innovative concept was designed to digitally present Audi's entire line of cars in a compact space, using such "groundbreaking media technology," says Audi, as the ability for visitors to "digitally select their vehicle from several hundred million possible configurations and experience it in realistic 1:1 scale on screens that almost fill the entire space." More Audi Cities are coming soon.
Audi didn't start the trend of marketing cars in big city downtown areas, however. In May, BMW opened its first "BMW Brand Store" in metropolitan Paris, positioning it as "Future Retail." Unlike the Audi concept, real cars appear in the Paris space, along with an employee BMW unashamedly refers to as a "product genius" in a nod to Apple's retail concept, the "Genius Bar."
Not to be outdone, the iconic Rolls-Royce brand, a motorcar brand many might consider ultra-stodgy, is making a few breakthrough moves of its own. The venerable Rolls-Royce brand, has been around since 1904, but the British icon clearly don't want to be left behind in the 21st Century. In the fourth quarter, Rolls-Royce plans to open a boutique — don't call it a showroom — at Rama 3 in Bangkok, Thailand.
Rolls-Royce already has a Bangkok showroom, but the boutique, the first of its kind to be located in an upscale shopping mall, will feature additional products. Still, why open a "boutique" in Bangkok?Continue reading...
Posted by Mark J. Miller on August 13, 2012 12:17 PM
As the world (and London's Heathrow airport) bids adieu to the Summer Olympians and gets ready for the Paralympic Games, a few thoughts to leave you with:
IOC Chief Rogge Celebrates His Last Games
International Olympic Committee chief Jacques Rogge is getting ready to pass on the leadership torch and he is ending his long reign a happy man. Rogge toasted London’s Games Sunday, saying that these Olympics were “absolutely fabulous.” What bigger compliment can there be?
London 2012 Will Be Paid Off in Nine Years
The Summer Olympics may have cost billions for London to throw, including all the lost revenue from tourists who were scared away and residents who worked at home during the Games. But the Centre for Economics and Business Research estimates that the whole extravagant shebang will pay for itself by 2021. The big jump will come in 2015, the think tank estimates, when the country will start generating an extra £1.8billion ($2.8 billion) a year due to the Games.Continue reading...
Posted by Abe Sauer on May 18, 2012 07:05 PM
Will the product placements in this weekend's Battleship sink the product placements ruling the box office in The Avengers? Check back here for the full Battleship product placement scorecard on Monday.
In the meantime, a slew of recent movie news confirms that Hollywood is cozying up to products, and finding compelling content in brand stories themselves, including competing Steve Jobs projects.Continue reading...
Posted by Abe Sauer on January 20, 2012 12:11 PM
And now for something completely different: in honor of Chinese New Year (Kung Hei Fat Choi!) this week's Brand Bites round-up is all China, all the time:
• Coach is targeting mainland consumers with limited edition Spring Festival e-card collaboration with artist Zhang Lan. And some nifty Year of the Dragon themed accessories, above.Continue reading...