Posted by Mark J. Miller on October 11, 2013 11:58 AM
Over 80 analysts and investors gathered in the Tiger Woods Center at Nike's Oregon headquarters on Wednesday for the company's annual Investor Day, and boy did they get good news.
Various company heads took the stage to assure investors that the 45-year-old company, which was just named Forbes' Most Valueable Sports Brand with a brand value of $17.5 billion, currently nets revenues of over $25 billion, plans to hit $30 billion in revenue by 2015, and $36 billion just two years after that.
How will they do it? Growing businesses that they are already strong in, of course, including basketball, running and women’s apparel and footwear.Continue reading...
Posted by Dale Buss on October 4, 2013 10:43 AM
Once, PowerBar was a pioneer of the nutrition-bar segment, a unique product that joined Silk soy milk and a handful of other far-sighted innovations as the harbingers of a whole new American better-for-you-food trend.
But now the brand is merely one of hundreds, nay thousands, of energy bars and other bar formats that take an entire aisle at some US supermarkets, and so Nestle has decided PowerBar isn't pulling its weight. The Swiss food giant reportedly is looking to sell PowerBar and many other "underperforming" units in a brand house cleaning that long has been urged upon it by advisers.
In many ways Nestle is a model of modern multinational brand management, having built and expanded powerful franchises in segments ranging from chocolate to water to baby food to coffee. Other industry CEOs point to Nestle as the paragon, a company they're trying to fashion theirs after.Continue reading...
Posted by Dale Buss on October 3, 2013 10:51 AM
Digital do-it-yourself diet plans have shaken up the weight-loss business, but Nutrisystem is trying to shake off the impact—and shape up itself.
Dawn Zier, the CEO who came last year from Reader's Digest Association, believes that new retail and digital initiatives, as well as more discipline in its core home-delivery business, are beginning to turn around Nutrisystem. The company posted about a 20 percent drop in revenues for the second quarter, but Zier told brandchannel that Nutrisystem's biggest-yet retail initiative, at Walmart, and fledgling efforts in the online realm are starting to deliver results.
"Our turnaround is on track in terms of the things I said we need to do: return to direct-marketing fundamentals, focus on costs, and product and program innovation," she said. "And choose a handful of growth initiatives, not too many—focus on areas where we can expand and grow."Continue reading...
Posted by Dale Buss on September 24, 2013 03:07 PM
Progressive has gotten a lot of marketing mileage out of its perky spokeswoman character, Flo. But there are places even Flo can't take the insurance brand, and so Progressive is launching an extension that's meant to dimensionalize the company through broader positioning as an advocate of people who "make progress by making things a little better."
Introducing "The Thread" with a new TV ad this week, Progressive wants to "introduce consumers to the real company behind" Flo, as a press release put it.Continue reading...
Posted by Dale Buss on September 23, 2013 10:52 AM
Hershey is gearing up to take advantage of chocolate season—from Halloween through Christmas—but the company also has larger, longer-term goals in sight that amount to a significant refinement of its traditional approach.
The iconic confectionery brand is hot on portion-controlled, resealable packaging; is moving late but eagerly into international expansion; believes sustainability is important but not a sine qua non for its brands; and is open to making more acquisitions. All of that will help Hershey achieve its goal of reaching $10 billion in annual sales compared with the $6.6 billion it notched in 2012.Continue reading...
Posted by Dale Buss on September 18, 2013 03:51 PM
New Tim Hortons CEO Marc Caira may not have figured out how to sell enough Canadian-developed coffee in the United States yet. But he sure knows how to peddle interest in what Canada's brightest native star of the QSR industry might end up doing.
In multiple interviews and an analysts' meeting this month, Caira—a former Nestle SA executive who came out of retirement in July to run Tim Hortons—has made a few things clear: Growth in Canada depends on more variety in new outlets and better execution everywhere; dinner is an appealing day part; and Tim Hortons must, must, must succeed in the US market despite investor unrest at the brand's poor performance south of the border so far.
Somewhat curiously, Caira discounted the importance of typical pillars in improving Tim Hortons' performance. "Future battles are not going to be won, in my view, with who has the best strategy or who has the best innovation," he said, according to The Canadian Press.Continue reading...
Posted by Dale Buss on September 11, 2013 12:27 PM
Target keeps stretching the footprint of its brand, which now includes efforts to fuel innovation in health care—and a new digital-movie and -TV service.
Joining the growing ranks of big companies that are attempting to spark new enterprises—and re-stock the corporate cupboard of new ideas—by incentivizing and nurturing startups, Target launched the Target Simplicity Challenge to foster ideas for helping Americans make helpful lifestyle choices and to assist in living with chronic conditions. In 2012, Walmart launched a similar effort with its "Get On The Shelf" competition, and has continued to invest in startups for its @WalmartLabs project. Nike has an accelerator to develop mobile and green technologies, and Target already has a retail accelerator.
The healthcare initiative will help further the already existing retail medical clinics, pharmacies and optical departments in many Target stores. "The growing dialogue about the need to transform health care is near and dear to our hearts," Jose Barra, Target's senior vice president for health and beauty, said in a press release. "We believe there is value in surfacing simple, intuitive ideas to drive a lot of impact.Continue reading...
Posted by Dale Buss on September 10, 2013 01:42 PM
With the potential lack of any blockbuster new product on the horizon, McDonald's keeps repackaging and refining its existing menu in order to attempt to jolt stubborn sales in the US and elsewhere.
The latest twists: McDonald's burgers and chicken McNuggets packaged in a box for "multiple" consumption, and steak on breakfast sandwiches. "It's like they're throwing things at a wall to see what sticks," Sam Oches, editor of trade publication QSR, told USA Today. "It looks like another move on McDonald's part to redefine value."
Well, actually, the chain is throwing a bunch of stuff into what it calls the "Blitz Box": two Quarter Pounders with Cheese, two medium fries and 10 Chicken McNuggets with dipping sauces, a total of nearly 3,000 calories overall, for a price of $14.99. Blitz Box is a football-themed specialty tied to a local promotion with the Kansas City Chiefs and scheduled to extend through the Chief's NFL season.Continue reading...