brand survivors

Regional Favorite Tastykake Isn't Letting Its Age Slow Down Expansion Plans

Posted by Mark J. Miller on February 25, 2014 08:09 PM

Philadelphia’s Tasty Baking Co. may not have quite made it to 100 years old, with its 2011 sale to Flowers Foods for $141 million, but its star brand, Tastykakes, is an official centenarian. 

The brand, which has been a longtime regional favorite, is getting some well-deserved national exposure under Flowers, which has expanded the sale of the brand's offerings, including Butterscotch Krimpets, Peanut Butter Kandy Kakes, and all the rest, to over 5,000 delivery routes that stretch from Maine to Florida and as west as Nevada. 

"When they bought Tastykake, they didn't buy Tastykake for Philadelphia,” George J. Latella, a visiting professor of food marketing at St. Joseph's University and a former Tasty Baking sales executive, told the Philadelphia Inquirer. “They bought it for the brand, to take the brand all over the place."

And with a vote of confidence from Flowers CEO Allen Shiver, who told analysts recently that "Tastykake is proving to be a strong player across our markets," more consumers than ever will get to revel in the brand's big birthday celebration this year.Continue reading...

brand survivors

Paula Deen's Brand Isn't Dead Yet as Food Network Fumbles

Posted by Mark J. Miller on October 10, 2013 06:22 PM

Celebrity chef Paula Deen got tossed off her throne at Food Network after an 11-year reign this past summer after a wave of bad publicity regarding the use of racial epithets gained her a lot of enemies. Deen was subsequently dropped by Food Network along with nearly every other sponsor she accrued over her career, though the lawsuit against her was eventually dropped. 

Deen fans were irate and boycotted the network, and now it appears that the network is paying the price. Viewership numbers for the Food Network have gone down since then, with total prime time viewers down 6 percent during the June 24 to Oct. 6 time period compared with the same period last year. Daytime viewing went down 3 percent in that span. Worse than that, though, 18- to 49-year-olds seemingly ditched the network; their viewership dropped 16 percent during prime time and 10.8 percent during the day.Continue reading...

brand survivors

Kodak CEO Outlines Path to Emerging from Bankruptcy in 2013

Posted by Shirley Brady on November 30, 2012 01:28 PM

Eastman Kodak announced this week that it had the financing in place "to successfully execute its remaining reorganization objectives and emerge from Chapter 11 in the first half of 2013." Today, Kodak chairman and CEO Antonio M. Perez updated the progress toward that goal since filing for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection in January.

Perez, in the video above, discusses the four areas Kodak has been working on during this Chapter 11 reorganization period: resolving legacy costs and issues in the US around retiree pension benefits, with an agreement reached in October and downsizing of its US workforce; "increase liquidity in the US," its biggest cost center and lowest profit center (with $1B in sales outside America); selling off non-strategic IP and patents; and "focusing on our most valuable businesses" — namedly, commercial imaging, as it moves away from its consumer businesses.

"This is a difficult process," he states. "Neither our employees, customers or suppliers doubted why we were doing what we're doing, and they've been there with us all the way. So thank you, thank you all."

brand survivors

Gulf Has Found Its Way Back to Texas

Posted by Mark J. Miller on April 11, 2012 05:56 PM

When oil was discovered south of Beaumont, Texas, just off the Gulf of Mexico more than a century ago, a few folks with lots of money got together, including one of the Mellons from Pittsburgh, and started up the business that became Gulf Oil in 1907.

The original investors, of course, made plenty of dough: at their peak, the wells pulled more than 100,000 barrels of oil out of the earth daily.

Over time, and with various business partnerships and purchases, Gulf, now based in Massachusetts, hasn’t had such a strong presence in the Lone Star State. Since it merged with SOCAL in 1985, a lot of Gulfs have become Chevrons, and Petro-Canada bought out all the Gulfs north of the border. Continue reading...

brand survivors

Avon Calling… Anew

Posted by Sheila Shayon on April 11, 2012 12:06 PM

In its heyday, “Ding Dong, Avon Calling” (as seen above in this 1962 commercial) was ubiquitous. But today, the fall of an iconic brand built on a now outmoded premise is the headline of Richard Levick's Forbes piece, which laments “Avon Calling When It Should Have Been Clicking.” 

In a world dominated by e-commerce, Avon isn't even carried by, one of the web’s largest beauty products retailers. And chances are, those female customers of yore are no longer home to answer the door.

Avon is in play, having just rejected an unsolicited $10 billion buyout offer from Coty Inc. Another bid is expected from Richmont Holdings, a company helmed by founder and chairman John Rochon, former CEO of Avon rival Mary Kay who led an attempted takeover of Avon in the late 1980s.Continue reading...

brand survivors

Yahoo! Yahoo’s Reorganization Is Official

Posted by Sheila Shayon on April 10, 2012 02:28 PM

“It’s time for Yahoo! to move forward, and fast,” wrote CEO Scott Thompson in a note to employees this morning.

Thompson is moving decisively, eliminating 2,000 jobs last week and reorganizing businesses around three areas effective May 1: consumers, geographic regions, and technology. All this turmoil is part of his strategy to reverse a three-year slump that has seen the brand’s stock lose 10% of its value in the last year -– a very tough one for the brand.

“Yahoo’s failure to keep up with Facebook Inc. and Google Inc. in online advertising led to the ouster of former CEO Carol Bartz and prompted Chairman Roy Bostock and co-founder Jerry Yang to depart. Now the company faces a proxy fight with investor Third Point LLC,” reported SFGate.

Here’s Thompson’s memo, after the jump: Continue reading...

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brand survivors

Reebok Relaunching EasyTone Shoes After Settling FTC Suit

Posted by Mark J. Miller on December 21, 2011 02:07 PM

Reebok got itself into a heap of trouble with the Federal Trade Commission when it put out an ad campaign that claimed that the design of its EasyTone and RunTone shoes help give anyone who wears them better muscle tone than anyone who wears other shoes.

The company had such noted muscle-tone experts as Kim Kardashian spreading the news of its effects. Back in 2009, the kontroversial starlet blogged her love for the product, the Daily Mail reports

“You guys wouldn’t believe it, these shoes have a ball (kind of like that big balance ball you use to do sit ups on) on the bottom of the shoes!” Kardashian wrote. “So basically it works your leg and butt muscles as you simply walk!”Continue reading...

brand survivors

Bennigan's, Other QSR Brands Tough It Out in Tough Times

Posted by Dale Buss on September 2, 2011 03:33 PM

Double dip or a single dip with sprinkles on it, the recessionary feeling of the economy is something that Americans may be getting used to. And increasingly, quick-serve and fast-casual restaurant brands are adjusting to this "new normal" and simply trying to do business in spite of it, instead of assuming that better days are ahead.

Take Bennigan's. One of the original definers of the modern fast-casual restaurant segment, the 80-unit chain knows a thing or two about hard times, and by its own admission the Irish pub chain had grown rather stale and lifeless. It filed for bankruptcy-court protection in 2008, closed its corporate-owned stores across the US, and last November relaunched under new ownership. And certainly the three-year slump in the restaurant industry hasn't helped.

But instead of crying the blues, the Dallas-based chain, which now operates about 100 stores in the US and internationally is bringing out the green: It is launching a deep overhaul that includes re-connecting with the Irish green that was a key part of the optics of the original Bennigan's brand.Continue reading...

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