brands under fire
Posted by Sheila Shayon on May 15, 2012 11:02 AM
The buck has stopped – or on this case, the pound — as the first criminal charges have been filed in the phone hacking inquiry that has been rocking UK (and global) media circles. Rebekah Brooks, former CEO of Rupert Murdoch's News International, will face criminal charges over the phone hacking scandal.
The Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) charges that Brooks, who was arrested in March and revealed last week she's so close to British Prime Minister David Cameron that they text each other, "conspired with her husband, Charles Brooks, and others to pervert the course of justice," by alleged attempts to conceal or remove evidence relevant to police investigation into the hacking and corruption scandals known as Operation Weeting launched in January 2011 at the News of the World and the Sun tabloids.
It’s a stunning reversal for one of Britain’s most powerful woman, a Murdoch confidante, and additional oversight of all his newspapers in the U.S. as well — not to mention the latest black eye for News Corp.'s corporate reputation.Continue reading...
Posted by Shirley Brady on May 14, 2012 01:53 PM
Best Buy today released the results of an independent ethics inquiry, confirming that former CEO Brian Dunn, who resigned on April 10th, had engaged in an inappropriate relationship with a female staffer. The company also named a new chairman of the board in Hatim Tayabji, chairman and CEO of Bytemobile.
According to the company's press release, "When the Audit Committee was first informed of the allegations in mid-March 2012, it hired outside law firm WilmerHale to conduct an independent investigation. In the interest of transparency and accountability, the board made a commitment to publicly release the findings."
The company is also in the midst of closing 50 of its big box U.S. stores this year.Continue reading...
Posted by Sheila Shayon on May 11, 2012 09:55 AM
A tough-to-watch, controversy-stirring videotaped event by Lush Cosmetics in the U.K. involved a performance artist undergoing animal laboratory tests in the window of Lush Regent Street London in April to raise awareness of their fight against animal testing in cosmetics.
Jacqueline Traides, 24, spent ten hours in the store window and was subjected to force-feeding, injections, hair shaving and other extreme discomfort while restrained. She later blogged, "It was somewhere after the fourth hour of this live act that I found my self asking the question ‘why exactly am i here?’. I realised then that it was not to Lush, nor to the onlookers but to the beings, animals and humans alike, that endure such suffering without choice."
Intended to shock, thousands of passerby signed the brand's petition on the spot, while the performance was also streamed live on a website where viewers could sign. "I hope it will plant the seed of a new awareness in people to really start thinking about what they go out and buy and what goes into producing it," said Traides.Continue reading...
brands under fire
Posted by Mark J. Miller on April 27, 2012 05:05 PM
Wal-Mart has been accused of bribing Mexican officials so that it could open stores South of the Border, but don’t think it is alone on this one. From the looks of it, business schools might want to add Bribery 101 as an elective.
Fortune reports that Deere, Disney, Hewlett-Packard, Qualcom, Las Vegas Sands, Koch Industries, and plenty of others “are also under investigation for violations of the U.S. Foreign Corrupt Practices Act.” Just this week, two big companies got caught when the SEC charged a former Morgan Stanley exec “with bribing an official of a state-owned Chinese company in order to win business for the investment firm.” Plus, News Corp. gave the word that it’s being investigated for bribery as part of its whole phone-hacking fiasco.
Indeed, according to Fortune, “at least 81 public companies under investigation by the Securities and Exchange Commission or the Department of Justice for running afoul of the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act, which makes bribery in foreign countries punishable in the U.S.”Continue reading...
Posted by Sheila Shayon on April 26, 2012 12:11 PM
As he battles to restore his media conglomerate's reputation as the British hacking inquiry continues, News Corp. head Rupert Murdoch found himself in more hot water this week.
On the second day of the UK media ethics inquiry chaired by Lord Justice Brian Leveson about the Australian-born mogul’s intertwined political influence and business interests, Murdoch stepped into it by describing British Prime Minister David Cameron's late son Ivan as "retarded." In fact, Ivan Cameron was afflicted with cerebral palsy and epilepsy and died at age six in 2009.Continue reading...
Posted by Mark J. Miller on April 25, 2012 03:50 PM
Fast-food brands aren't going to get out of the meat business any time soon. But Burger King wants to be the first big U.S. fast-food chain to at least do that with chicken and pigs that don’t spend their lives caged up.
The plan is for the 7,200 Burger Kings across America to be using 100 percent cage-free eggs by 2017 and also only buy pork from “suppliers that can demonstrate documented plans to end their use of gestation crates for breeding pigs,” according to a press release.
The animal welfare announcement comes as the chain is promoting the chicken strips on its new U.S. menu in a celeb-laden (now adding Steven Tyler? Update: yes, Tyler) advertising campaign.Continue reading...
Posted by Sheila Shayon on April 23, 2012 11:53 AM
Walmart, the world’s largest private employer, with 2011 sales of $421.85 billion, is dealing with a major blow to its reputation after being accused over the weekend of a far-reaching bribery campaign carried out by executives in Mexico eager to boost the company's growth in that market.
The New York Times described the Mexican scandal as “a prolonged struggle within the company that pitted its much publicized commitment to the highest moral and ethical standards against its relentless pursuit of growth.”Continue reading...
brands under fire
Posted by Sheila Shayon on March 14, 2012 11:51 AM
Burning up Wall Street and the virtual Wall Street that is Twitter and Facebook, not to mention inspiring wags such as the UK's Daily Mash (above) and US humorist Andy Borowitz — you've no doubt already read Goldman Sachs' exec Greg Smith’s excoriating resignation letter published as a take-no-prisoners op-ed column in The New York Times today. Goldman, no surprising, rejected Smith's accusations in the 'other' paper of record, the Wall Street Journal.Continue reading...