Posted by Sheila Shayon on October 16, 2013 06:29 PM
Amazon has begun an ‘under-the-tent’ arrangement with Procter & Gamble using its employees to package, label and ship Bounty paper towels, Pampers diapers and other products from inside P&G warehouses.
Enjoying a unique relationship with its major suppliers, the e-commerce behemoth is greasing the skids as the next wave of internet sales, everyday consumer goods, explodes. The e-tailer reportedly is working out similar cost-cutting deals with other CPG suppliers, according to the Wall Street Journal.
Amazon’s program, Vendor Flex, leverages its supplier’s warehouses and distribution networks, reducing costs of moving, time and storage and giving them an edge over competitors like Walmart, Costco and Target. Household staples, considered too bulky or cheap to justify shipping costs, comprise just 2 percent of such goods purchased online—but that percent was valued at $16 billion in 2012, according to Nielsen, and will grow by 25 percent a year to $32 billion in 2015, which is why retailers like Amazon and Target are hotly pursuing the segment.Continue reading...
Posted by Mark J. Miller on October 11, 2013 02:56 PM
In a turn of the tides and a sure sign of the future, Hershey in June launched its first international-only confectionary brand—Lancaster. The condensed-milk—or caramel—candy was the first product that Hershey ever launched exclusively overseas—but not for long. The company has confirmed that it will be introducing the line of soft caramels to the US market, making it the first new candy brand from Hershey in the US in 30 years.
The soft crèmes, which will be available in caramel, vanilla and caramel, and vanilla and raspberry, are actually named for the original company that was founded by Milton Hershey more than 120 years ago—Lancaster Caramel Company.
According to the International Business Times, this is the first time that Hershey has launched a product internationally before doing so domestically—a move that speaks directly to the company's current growth strategy as it aims to increase sales by 50 percent to $10 billion annually by 2017.Continue reading...
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...