Posted by Abe Sauer on May 21, 2012 02:57 PM
As the NBA playoffs shift into high gear, the NBA's new beer partners in China are hoping business, and their brands, do likewise. Indeed, the most prominent of the NBA's new beer brand partners, Harbin Brewery, is stepping up, giving 110 percent and leaving it all on the court to peak at the right time and finally get the consumer respect it deserves.Continue reading...
Posted by Dale Buss on May 15, 2012 08:50 AM
Best Buy, JPMorgan, Yahoo CEO stumbles put ethics and mismanagement in the spotlight. JPMorgan closes ranks around embattled CEO Jamie Dimon as mega-loss is probed; and Yahoo's interim CEO Ross Levinsohn reportedly close to getting role permanently.
Amazon reportedly prepping front-lit Kindle for July.
Facebook eyes historic $12 billion to $15 billion IPO windfall and up to $104 billion valuation.
Activision Blizzard goes back to the future for new games.
Apple plans iCloud upgrade, and thinner laptops with Intel chips.
Baidu enters China's crowded low-cost smartphone market.
BMW touts "ultimate service" in new campaign.
Budweiser strikes deal with Jay-Z for annual concert.Continue reading...
Posted by Abe Sauer on May 14, 2012 11:32 AM
For the third year, San Francisco's famed Alcatraz will serve as the site for the final game of the one-on-one Red Bull King of the Rock basketball championship. And for the first year, Chinese sportswear brand Li-Ning will be the official footwear and apparel sponsor.
For China's most famous athletic brand, established in 1990, co-sponsoring King of the Rock (along with Skullcandy, 24 Hour Fitness, and Dime magazine) is an opportunity to regroup and take another shot at a US market in which the brand has met a little success and a lot of setbacks.
Now Li-Ning is hoping to be a foreign success story, one of the few amongst successful Chinese brands that struggle to make a dent once outside of China's borders. Where better to test a brand's mettle than the infamous "yard" at America's most famous prison?Continue reading...
Posted by Abe Sauer on May 10, 2012 11:37 AM
The "disagreement" between China and the Philippines over the ownership of tiny Huangyan Island in the South China Sea is heating up to "saber rattling" level, with warships headed to the region and Chinese newspapers warning not to "Attempt to Take Away Half an Inch of China's Territory."
On China's microblog Weibo, nationalistic server is being stirred with rumors of a Chinese shopping mall in the Philippines the victim of arson (18 dead) and heavy circulation showing a Filipino burning a Chinese flag.
And what's a lot of heated national passions good for if not brand building? One men's hygiene brand thinks so at least and has launched a "Huangyan Island is China's" viral campaign. The brand's official partner, the National Basketball Association, may feel differently.Continue reading...
Posted by Mark J. Miller on May 10, 2012 10:01 AM
Sprint has been moving into more specialized mobile content in recent years, such as the Sprint NBA Mobile offering designed to bring playoffs action direct to fans' smartphones. Now Reuters reports that Sprint has another plan to please mobile customers: “a new mobile advertising policy to reassure customers that they have control over whether or not they receive ads on their cell phone.”
When announcing the update to its mobile ad policy on Tuesday at an annual wireless showcase, Sprint Nextel CEO Dan Hesse pointed out that consumers don’t really have a whole lot of trust for mobile operators. "Even cable and oil industries rate higher with consumers than we do," Hesse stated. "It's very troubling."
Also troubling for Hesse personally is that he is taking a $3.25 million cut to his paycheck in order to appease shareholders, who are upset that he’s been reelected to the board and concerns that the company may have overpaid Apple for the rights to sell the iPhone.
"I do not want ... to penalize Sprint employees for the company's investment with Apple, so I will forego this adjustment to my compensation," Hesse, who still has $12.35 million in salary, bonuses and stock-based compensation, said in a letter to shareholders on Friday, according to CNN.com.
Posted by Mark J. Miller on May 9, 2012 10:26 AM
Some of the shine has started to come off of Michael Jordan’s once-seemingly eternal luster. Being the owner of the NBA’s worst team, by far, as well as being very anti-player during the last strike has left some not loving Jordan these days.
While Jordan isn’t named in the lawsuit, one of the products with the name of His Airness place don it by the folks at Nike has raised the ire of an energy-drink company. Urban Motive Sportswear is going after Nike for using the phrase “lottery pick” in its “Jordan LS Lottery Pick Jacket,” according to The Urban Daily.
UMS has been selling an energy drink called Lottery Pick since 2004 and it claims that Nike’s product has been hurting the sales of their drink, especially in Chicago where Jordan led the Bulls to six NBA championships. The suit has it that Nike’s product “damaged [UMS] in a manner that cannot be fully measured or compensated in economic terms and for which there is not adequate remedy at law.” UMS “even claims to have gifted Jordan’s sons some of their merchandise,” The Urban Daily notes.
And to make matters worse for Brand Jordan (as opposed to Jordan Brand, his Nike-backed shoe line), he's coming under fire for an endorsement pitch for Gatorade, with a consumer watchdog criticizing the implied message to youths.Continue reading...
Posted by Mark J. Miller on May 3, 2012 02:03 PM
In the running world, a trend of the past few years has been the marketing of shoes that gave runners the sense of having bare feet. It appears that a similar sensation is being sought for basketball players. Last year, Adidas cranked out the adizero Crazy Light basketball sneaks that were, um, crazy light.
Now the company is doing itself one better. The brand just debuted adizero Crazy Light 2, which it claims is the lightest basketball shoe ever. Weighing in at 9.5 ounces, it’s hard to argue. Adidas claims that this Crazy Light is 10% lighter than its nearest competitor and is .3 ounces lighter than the previous version.Continue reading...
sports in the spotlight
Posted by Mark J. Miller on May 1, 2012 04:02 PM
The New Jersey Nets have pretty much stunk for a few years now. The last time the team had an actual winning record was way back in 2005-'06.
Since May of 2010, they’ve had a new majority owner, Russian billionaire Mikhail Prokhorov, the first foreign owner of any NBA team and the recent loser of the Russian presidential race to Vladimir Putin. And next season, they will have a new home and a new look. The team is moving to Brooklyn to a brand-spanking-new arena and the team took two measures to celebrate the change now that their New Jersey days are over.
The Brookyn Nets also unveiled a video, entitled “Hello Brooklyn,” to celebrate the transition to the team's new home and stadium as well as the new logo — which was designed, by the way, by Nets minority owner Jay-Z.Continue reading...