Posted by Barry Silverstein on April 21, 2010 12:37 PM
Georgia, an independent democratic country south of Russia, wants to be a global economic powerhouse—and it's hoping a classic dish may help brand the nation.
The country is running an ad campaign on American and European television sponsored by the Georgian National Investment Agency. The campaign, called "The winner is Georgia," is focused on attracting worldwide investors.
Now Georgia wants to trademark its national dish, khachapuri, a cheese-filled pastry that looks like a thinner, bigger version of the Italian calzone. That's right: it's staking its national reputation on a cheese pie.Continue reading...
Posted by Sara Zucker on March 2, 2010 01:21 PM
The 2010 FIFA World Cup is approaching, and to celebrate – and capitalize on – the occasion, Budweiser is recruiting soccer enthusiasts for a new online reality show. “Bud House,” will enlist one person from each of the 32 countries participating in the sporting event to live in “luxurious accommodations” in the Cape Town, South Africa – the location of this year's World Cup.
The Feed Company, a viral promotions agency, is helping Budweiser spread the word to fans, both male and female, everywhere. The games begin on June 11, but excitement for the show is already growing rapidly. “Bud House” will act as a unique way for international fans to interact and react to the goings-on at the 2010 World Cup while Budweiser and computer users sit back and enjoy the show.Continue reading...
Posted by Barry Silverstein on November 5, 2009 03:35 PM
Paul Revere's ride warning that "the British are coming" is taking on a whole new meaning in Beantown. In just the last several weeks, three British brands have appeared on Newbury Street, Boston's fashionable shopping district.
Newbury Street is a charming, narrow street with a European feel in Boston's downtown. It is littered with quaint restaurants and elegant boutiques. But like many urban retail districts, it has been hard hit recently. In the last year, there has been a mass exodus of retailers. "In one four-block stretch, there are now at least 16 vacancies," the Boston Globe reports.Continue reading...
Posted by Abe Sauer on October 29, 2009 11:32 AM
"Made in Taiwan." Those three words represent everything from America's decline as a manufacturing powerhouse, to Asia's economic rise, to the explosion of cheap consumer culture, to China's new pride seen in "Made by Chinese" movements, to China and Taiwan's long-running war, now fought via "Made in..." proxy.
So just what does "Made in Taiwan" mean today?
Manufacturing for export took Taiwan from one of the world's poorest places to one of the wealthiest. But now Taiwan has been identified as one economy that is suffering most from the global recession. The nation's exports, accounting for around 70 percent of the economy, fell 41% last December and 44% the month after that.
One irony is the circle of manufacturing life. Taiwan is losing its work to cheaper, less regulated in the region. Hakuna Mattata, Taiwan.
Another irony is that much of what Taiwan makes is finished in China resulting in a "Made in China" tag. Not that the "Made in China" brand hasn't taken a severe beating in the last few years. But this new relationship might also be helping normalize relations between the long-opposed "Made in..." nations.Continue reading...
Posted by Barry Silverstein on October 12, 2009 06:03 PM
Even as the United States was still smarting from Chicago's rejection in the first round of voting for the location of the 2016 Summer Olympics, which went to Rio de Janeiro, a new drama was unfolding. On Friday, the world was stunned by the news that Barack Obama had been awarded the 2009 Nobel Peace Prize, only the third sitting US president to receive such an honor.
Reaction came fast and furious from both U.S. and global pundits. Predictably, Obama boosters were delighted and Barack bashers were scornful. But the decision of the five-person Norwegian Nobel committee was unanimous. Geir Lundestad told the Financial Times: "We definitely feel that Obama has changed the international climate and contributed far more than any other candidate to fraternity among nations."Continue reading...
Posted by Abe Sauer on September 25, 2009 12:19 PM
Oktoberfest may sound like fun, but for brands it is serious business. As the 16-day celebration of das bier and gaudinockerln grows in popularity worldwide, brands are using it as an important promotional springboard.
Germany is the center of gravity for Oktoberfest. At the Munich extravaganza, German breweries abound, with tents seating thousands sponsored by brands ranging from Paulaner to Augustiner Bräu.
But Oktoberfest is a great national branding opportunity for Germany on a national and global level. While the main event in Munich is the focus, more Oktoberfest events are popping up in places from Toronto to Brazil and are increasingly popular. Continue reading...
Posted by Laura Fitch on September 23, 2009 02:45 PM
China’s auto industry is revving for international expansion.
After years serving as the country where the world’s cars (or at least a large number of their parts) were made, China’s auto execs are eyeing established international carmakers to take over.
Reuters recently listed several such proposed mergers, with Geely Automotive’s parent company approaching Canadian auto parts maker Magna International about a stake in Opel (Magna isn't interested), and preparing a bid for Ford's Volvo unit.Continue reading...
Posted by Reneé Alexander on September 17, 2009 10:12 AM
When is a free trade agreement not a free trade agreement? In the wake of “Buy American” provisions contained in Washington’s $787 billion stimulus plan, some companies on both sides of the 49th parallel are wondering.
Designed to give U.S. firms a leg up on foreign competitors, as the country struggles to recover from the biggest downturn since the Great Depression, the provisions are accused of seriously denting the biggest trade relationship both countries have, and of defying the 1988 Free Trade Agreement. Canadian critics warn that unilaterally breaking a treaty damages the core U.S. brand, since international trade depends on relationships and trust.Continue reading...