Posted by Mark J. Miller on June 18, 2014 11:56 AM
The fight against the Washington Redskins mascot just got a whole lot more interesting.
Today, the US Patent and Trademark Office cancelled the organization's trademarks related to its team mascot after the Trademark Trial and Appeal Board (TTAB) ruled that the marks were "disparaging" to Native Americans.
While the trademarks are no longer viable, the team can continue to use them—though with no protection from unauthorized merchants that sell Redskins gear, a stipulation that could drive the team's valuation down over time.
The action was the result of a lawsuit against the team filed by “five Native Americans” eight years ago, the USPTO said. “This victory was a long time coming and reflects the hard work of many attorneys at our firm,” lead attorney Jesse Witten, of Drinker Biddle & Reath, told the Washington Post.Continue reading...
sip on this
Posted by Dale Buss on June 11, 2014 03:43 PM
Coca-Cola’s global efforts to preserve its sales—and the essential nature of its brand and products—is beginning a crucial new test in the UK as the company launches both its new reduced-sugar Coca-Cola Life beverage and introduces a new anti-obesity campaign there simultaneously.
With 36 percent fewer calories and 37 percent less sugar than real cola, Coca-Cola Life will hit UK shelves in September, having passed its marketing launch in Argentina and Chile in 2013. Its upcoming launch in the UK will mark Life’s arrival in Europe (and the first new Coke product there since the launch of Coke Zero in 2006); no plans have been announced to roll it out in the US yet.
One reason Coke presumably started with Life in South America is that the drink is sweetened partially with stevia, a natural plant-derived substance that is native to the continent. PepsiCo has pooh-poohed the possibilities that global consumers will embrace stevia in colas because of aftertaste concerns, while still experimenting with the sweetener.Continue reading...
sip on this
Posted by Mark J. Miller on May 30, 2014 06:25 PM
The brand of New York City's Brooklyn borough has been rising for years and is now so stamped on American culture that it is easy to caricature. Brooklyn Brewery, one of the fastest-growing craft brewers around, has benefited from the borough's brand rise and its latest step is giving it (and the borough) a more global reach.
According to Bloomberg, the brewer has partnered with Carlsberg, its Swedish importer, and D. Carnegie & Co. to open a new brewery in Stockholm, Sweden, that will sell their wares. Sweden is the second-most popular market for Brooklyn beers outside of the borough itself, but the new brewery won't be just serving up traditional Brooklyn brews. A whole new line of beers, Nya Carnegie, are flowing from the taps there since it opened in early April.Continue reading...
Posted by Dale Buss on May 8, 2014 12:02 PM
HP believes there's plenty of room on the horizon for another cloud, so the brand known for PCs and printers is making its biggest foray yet into the softer side of the IT business.
CEO Meg Whitman has pledged to spend $1 billion over the next two years to create HP Helion, launching products and services for open-source cloud software via the rising platform, OpenStack, in a move that will compete with the two brands that have so far dominated cloud computing—Amazon and Google.
"This changes how we think about who we are competing with," said Bill Hilf, HP's vice president of cloud product and service management, according to the New York Times. As part of the move, the company's "public" cloud will expand from two to 20 of its 80 data centers worldwide within a year.
HP is putting all of its existing cloud offerings under the Helion brand and will indemnify its customers from any third-party patent claims that may arise against its open-source software. It will even extend that protection to the customers of their customers, the Times reported.Continue reading...
Posted by Sheila Shayon on May 7, 2014 10:24 AM
E-commerce juggernaut Alibaba Group, the largest e-commerce company in China and arguably the largest in the world, filed Monday for a $1 billion IPO that is expected to be the largest tech IPO ever, and make Alibaba the second-biggest internet company in the world after Google.
Dubbed "the hottest thing" in tech right now by former Apple CEO John Sculley, Alibaba is expected to go public with a market cap of around $165 billion, while some analysts think it may top $200 billion.
Now the trick will be to build trust in its brand beyond China—no mean feat for the company whose IPO triggered 1,000 "explainers" today by Western media outlets.Continue reading...
what's in a name
Posted by Mark J. Miller on May 5, 2014 02:21 PM
As brands embrace wearable tech and personal computing starts moving to the wrist (or other body parts), Apple fans and foes are on the lookout for its much-anticipated “iWatch,” a piece of wearable tech (that may not even be a watch) that has been elevated to such high status that George Jetson would covet it and a veteran luxury marketer—former Burberry CEO Angela Ahrendts—will help sell it.
It remains to be seen what Apple will eventually turn out, but one thing is now clear: Swatch, the world’s largest watchmaker, is ready to protect its ground. Having kept its lawyers busy chasing Target and Tiffany, the Swiss firm recently filed complaints against Apple’s application for the iWatch trademark, which is now starting to pop up, because it is too similar to its trademarked iSwatch product, according to media outlets including Bloomberg and the London Telegraph.
The iWatch trademark was registered by Apple last year in Japan, Mexico, and Turkey. There has been no move to take Apple to court, but Swatch would certainly prefer that Apple not use iWatch for the consumer-facing product when it launches. “We assess the likelihood of confusion as [high], given the marks are confusingly similar. In all countries where the mark is registered” Swatch intends to stop Apple from using the name, a Swatch rep told the Telegraph.Continue reading...
Posted by Sheila Shayon on January 3, 2014 04:07 PM
What’s in a name? Everything if you’re in storm branding—the latest battleground for weather services eager to claim mindshare in an increasingly crowded media space.
This week's Nor'easter was called the "East Coast Blizzard" by AccuWeather, "Major Winter Storm" by the National Weather Service, "Bethany" in Connecticut, and "Hercules" by The Weather Channel and most everyone else, including Governors Chris Christie and Andrew Cuomo, who both tweeted messages about the storm using the TV/web/mobile network's #Hercules hashtag.
In addition to annoying horror writer Stephen King (who dubbed the practice "dorky" to his Twitter followers) and other weather-watching brands by pushing Athena, Sandy and Nemo, The Weather Channel's practice of branding storms (this Western winter season, with the help of a high school Latin class in Bozeman, Montana) has irked the World Meteorological Organization, a 191-member organization based in Geneva.Continue reading...
Posted by Mark J. Miller on December 19, 2013 06:37 PM
The world may be turning its attentions to mobile devices that don’t have Intel chips, but the company that came to fame for powering PCs still wants to stay front and center in the minds of consumers. So it is placing a bet on sports marketing to help keep the name alive and thriving.
Its name popped up in sports-business stories last week when the company signed a five-year, $25 million deal with Spanish soccer giant Barcelona to stick the Intel logo on the inside of its jerseys so that fans can see it when their favorite players lift their shirts after scoring a goal.
“I know it’s bizarre and strange because it’s not shown on a day-to-day basis, but it’s more about the symbolic space,” said David Haroldsen, Intel’s vice president of sponsorship, according to the Washington Post. “It authentically tells the story of who we are rather than just being another brand that is visible with all the other logos that exist. We believed we would have more value with the symbolic placement with occasional pop-up moments within the game.”Continue reading...