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brand news

In the News: Coca-Cola, J.C. Penney, Twitter and more

Posted by Dale Buss on April 16, 2013 09:59 AM

In the News

Coca-Cola posts lower net and unveils U.S.-bottler deal.

JCPenney buys time with credit line.

Twitter seeks deals with NBC and Viacom for high-quality video content.

A&W plans to move upscale and test fast-casual concept.

Amazon targets older consumers with new store.

Apple dominates in best-paid executives as board retains Jobs deputies.

BMW will debut EV brand Zinoro in China in early 2014.Continue reading...

brand news

In the News: Sprint, ConAgra, Nike and more

Posted by Dale Buss on April 15, 2013 09:03 AM

In the News

Charlie Ergen's Dish Network offers to buy Sprint for $25.5 billion in a bid to one up SoftBank.

ConAgra, Heinz and Nestle lead frozen food battle to reverse negative image.

Nike seeks to regain its edge with fewer ads following Tiger Woods stumble.

Dannon uses Greek-style to leapfrog Yoplait to top of U.S. yogurt business.

Apple clearly enters post-Jobs era.

Justin Bieber sparks controversy with Anne Frank comment.

Boeing sees new inspection order on its 737s.Continue reading...

corporate citizenship

AT&T Takes Top Billing on Best Corporate Citizens List

Posted by Sheila Shayon on April 12, 2013 04:34 PM

AT&T has landed at top spot on CR Magazine's 14th annual 100 Best Corporate Citizens List, beating out other top Russell 1000 large-capitalization companies on merits including human rights and corporate governance.

Rounding out the top 10 on the new list: Mattel, Bristol-Myers Squibb, Eaton Corp, Intel, Gap, Hasbro, Merck & Co., Campbell Soup Co. and Coca-Cola. 

The ranking crunches 298 data points of disclosure and performance measures across seven categories: environment, climate change, employee relations, human rights, governance, finance and philanthropy. 

Notably, 26 companies on the 2013 list were not on the 2012 list, while 11 companies have appeared on the list every year since 2007. For those that were bestowed the honor, many were quick to highlight the significance of employee participation to the success of the company's initiatives.Continue reading...

brand news

In the News: Aereo, iPhone 5S, Billabong and more

Posted by Dale Buss on April 9, 2013 09:03 AM

In the News

Aereo TV streaming service from Barry Diller faces showdown with News Corp.'s Rupert Murdoch, who threatens to take FOX cable-only, as Intel cooks up its vision of future of TV.

Apple, which can now trademark iPad mini in U.S. and captured 74% of mobile app revenue in Q1, reportedly will release new iPhone 5S in "at least" two screen sizes.

Billabong in talks to sell out for $300 million.

Airbus juggles order book to meet record demand for A320neo Jet.

AT&T joins Boeing in backing U.S. cyber bill facing privacy fight.

Audi promotes in-vehicle Wi-Fi in new TV campaign.Continue reading...

brands under fire

Chipotle Drops Scout Sponsorship, Agrees to Hold Up Nondiscrimination Policy

Posted by Abe Sauer on March 21, 2013 11:37 AM

A sarcastic joke about diarrhea might be one of the first things one would think upon seeing the Twitter hashtag #thankschipotle. 

But no, #thankschipotle was a reaction to the food chain's decision to drop sponsorship of a Utah Boy Scout event due to the organizations stand against gay equality. It seems Chipotle's newest offering is a jumbo sized social conscience, a menu item many are finding deliciously timely. The move also has some lessons for other brands as remaining neutral on gay rights increasingly becomes a non option.

It's true that Chipotle did not exactly come up with this cancelation on its own but instead was more or less shamed into action by progressive activists at Think Progress. On March 19, Think Progress called out Chipotle for violating its own nondiscrimination policy. A day later, Chipotle's desire to stomach a potential backlash led by activists diminished significantly. It announced that it would terminate its sponsorship. It emailed Think Progress, saying, in part, that the brand "believed that terminating the sponsorship and remaining consistent with our policy was the right thing to do."Continue reading...

diversity watch

Brands Come Out to Support Gay Marriage

Posted by Mark J. Miller on February 27, 2013 04:26 PM

The U.S. federal government still defines the act of marriage as one taking place between a man and a woman even though a number of states have made gay marriage legal and President Obama made it clear in his Inauguration speech (and other speeches since) that gay marriage is something he firmly believes in. “Our journey is not complete until our gay brothers and sisters are treated like anyone else under the law—for if we are truly created equal, then surely the love we commit to one another must be equal as well,” Obama said after being sworn in on Jan. 21 by Supreme Court Chief Justice John Roberts.

Roberts will have a lot to do with possibly making a change to the way the federal government defines marriage when his Court hears two gay-marriage-related cases on March 26 and 27. Nearly 300 companies came out Wednesday to “urge the U.S. Supreme Court … to strike down a federal law that restricts the definition of marriage to heterosexual unions,” Reuters reports.

Considering the size and number of brands taking part, it will be hard for conservatives who have long opposed gay marriage to try and boycott everyone involved.Continue reading...

mobile brands

Mobile World Congress 2013: Samsung Soars While Apple is M.I.A.

Posted by Barry Silverstein on February 27, 2013 03:26 PM

We may live in an increasingly virtual world, but often it's what happens at live tech trade shows that sets the tone for what is to come. Such was the case with the flurry of major product announcements at January's Consumer Electronics Show (CES) in Las Vegas. 

This week's Mobile World Congress (MWC13) in Barcelona, Spain has been just as interesting, albeit for different reasons. One couldn't help but notice, for example, Samsung everywhere and Apple nowhere. Coming off its recent glitzy Super Bowl campaign with Paul Rudd and Seth Rogen and Oscars ad campaign starring Tim Burton, Samsung had a dominant presence at MWC13, debuting the Galaxy Note 8.0 tablet as a competitor to the iPad Mini, touting its Android-powered Galaxy S III and Galaxy Note II smartphones and proclaiming that it would double tablet sales from a year ago.

Samsung also aligned itself with the show introduction of Intel's Tizen, a new mobile operating system expected to challenge Google's Android. This could potentially put Samsung, which will launch Tizen-based phones this summer, on a collision course with Google, since Samsung currently makes more Android-based devices than any other manufacturer.

Of course, collision courses are nothing new for Samsung, the Korean behemoth that leads the world in cellphones.Continue reading...

mobile brands

AT&T, IBM and Other Brands Move Into Connected City at Mobile World Congress

Posted by Mark J. Miller on February 18, 2013 12:44 PM

Across the globe, people everywhere are pulling out their cell phones and tablets and e-readers—in buses and trains, in hallways and doorways, on beaches and ski lifts, in bedrooms and in bathrooms. Everywhere, the world is turning to look at mobile devices. Those devices may be getting all the attention out in the world, but the mobile world is much deeper than that, of course, and will have many ramifications for how the world lives.

The mobile world will be taking a close look at itself when the annual Mobile World Congress opens in Barcelona on Feb. 25th. To kick things off, the mobile world’s major association, the GSMA, will showcase how it expects mobile will change in the future by building a “Connected City” that expands on last year's connected house exhibit by featuring everything from a town hall, department store, and apartment to an electrical store, hotel, cafe and lounge, and a car showroom, among other things. With each location, different brands and innovations will be featured.

At MWC's fully connected city street, AT&T will showcase how people can manage their energy consumption and home security. Deutsche Telekom and IBM will show off how their using mobile help create better public transportation as well as  energy, security and water management. Aston Martin will show off a bike that features embedded sensors that communicate with an on-board computer to help athletes get a slew of data on how they are performing.Continue reading...

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