Posted by Barry Silverstein on September 15, 2009 02:30 PM
In 2007, AIG, with a brand value of over $7 billion, led all insurance companies in BusinessWeek's ranking of global brands. But today, "AIG has become the Enron of brand names," according to author Liz Goodgold. "The brand name is what people remember and that name is forever tainted."
Maybe that's why every division of the embattled financial services company is scrambling to distance itself from those three initials. The automobile insurance division was renamed 21st Century Insurance before it was sold to Farmers Insurance Group. AIG Annuity has been re-christened Western National Insurance. And AIG's property/casualty business is now operating under the newly introduced brand name Chartis, Insurancenewsnet reports.Continue reading...
brands that go bang
Posted by Abe Sauer on September 14, 2009 10:59 AM
When wary consumers rushed out to take advantage of the Cash for Clunkers program, non-automotive brands took note. Now one brand is trying to capitalize with its own cash for clunkers program.
Sig Sauer, the American extension of Swiss-German gun manufacturer Swiss Arms AG, has launched a cash for gun clunkers program which, from now until December, will pay $200 to anyone trading in an old gun for a new Sig Sauer model. Like the auto version, the Swiss Arms AG program sets limits for what defines a clunker: guns must be "free from cracks in frame or other key components… must be a semi-auto pistol 9mm or larger, or revolver of .38 caliber or larger.”Continue reading...
close of business
Posted by Stephanie Startz on September 11, 2009 07:58 PM
MTV sells branding rights to award categories in the Video Music Awards. Pepsi purchases rights to the "Best Performance in a Pepsi Rock Band Video Award" awarded to the winner of the "Rock Band" video game contest. [AdAge
50 Cent to change his name? Rumors on the heels of new book, album and body spray. [Rap Basement
Rebrand fail? Comparisons are being drawn between the new iVillage logo and Chick-fil-A. [Business Insider
The new Foursquare iPhone App comes a week after their $1.35 million seed round. New features increase usability and social layer. [TechCrunch
Courtney Love expresses her displeasure at Activision's use of Kurt Cobains image in "Guitar Hero 5." [Portfolio
Posted by Peter Feld on September 4, 2009 09:37 AM
US unemployment is up to 9.7%, but pace is seen as slowing. [Washington Post]
The stimulus worked [Washington Post], and August retail numbers contain hints of an upturn [WSJ].
Departure of chief exec Kai-Fu Lee is a setback for Google in China. [NYT]
Proctor & Gamble to sponsor US Olympic teams in 2010 and 2012. [WSJ]
T-Mobile uses Google's Android platform to launch a pay-as-you-go cell phone. [Brand Republic]
(More: Facebook follies, Verizon controversy, Disney.) Continue reading...
Posted by Reneé Alexander on September 3, 2009 05:38 PM
A recapitalization plan for Canwest Global Communications has been "around the corner" for months now, as the beleaguered Canadian media giant continues to struggle under its crippling debt load. But by the time a deal is finally announced, the brand will have already passed the point of no return.
The once-proud owner of major newspapers and the Global Television network suffered irreparable damage earlier this year when it defaulted on two corporate bond offerings, effectively putting bondholders at the company's helm. Continue reading...
penny-wise, brand foolish
Posted by Abe Sauer on September 3, 2009 05:19 PM
The Washington Redskins — along with baseball's Cleveland Indians, one of the last two teams in US pro sports to cling to an archaic, racially tinged brand — are playing an aggressive game against their cash-strapped fans. Long-suffering season ticketholder (since 1962!) Pat Hill, 72, is only now learning what it means to be an NFL fan.
Hill's real estate business hasn't fared well during the crash. In danger of going broke, the diehard fan requested a few years' waiver on her 10-year season contract, until she could again secure the funds needed to watch New England crush her beloved team, live and in the stadium. No dice. Continue reading...
Posted by Peter Feld on September 1, 2009 01:21 PM
"Cash for Clunkers" boosted US auto sales, which quickly fell to earth when the program ended. [NYT]
Ford was a big winner; Chrysler a loser. [WSJ]
Wal-Mart takes on Amazon and eBay with an online offering of outside items. [Reuters]
Windows plans to "simplify our branding so it’s easier for people to know when they’re carrying a Windows phone and easier to find them in stores." [Windows Blog]
Tobacco makers wage free-speech court fight against marketing restrictions, led by First Amendment guru Floyd Abrams. [NYT]
Bank of America plans to return bailout money. [Bloomberg]
Games Guitar Hero and World of Warcraft help Vivendi survive recession. [Guardian]
When brands detach: eBay sells stake in Skype. [NYT]
How Volvo ignored the experts and took the lead in India's luxury bus market. [FT]