Posted by Alicia Ciccone on June 17, 2013 11:02 AM
During last week's G8 Innovation Conference, Richard Branson along with the director of Kering, Jochen Zeitz, announced The B Team, a global non-profit aimed at refocusing business on people, the planet and the economy.
The 'team' is made up of a handful of global business and political leaders including The Huffington Post's Arianna Huffington, Kering's Francois Henri-Pinault, Unilever CEO Paul Polman, and the Minister of Economy and Minister of Finance of Nigeria. With a goal to take the focus off of short term gains, the B leaders hope to broaden the conversation and inspire a Plan B that focuses on solving the world's growing problems of inequality, unemployment and the unsustainable use of natural resources, according to a release.Continue reading...
Posted by Mark J. Miller on April 30, 2013 12:42 PM
Virgin Group CEO Richard Branson wants to help everybody without $4.6 billion to their name find love. (And if it helps him make a few more bucks, all the better.)
Virgin Airlines, in honor of its new flight plan to Las Vegas, has introduced an in-flight service designed to bring folks together on all of its planes. Passengers can now send a drink, snack or meal to other passengers on their flight and send text messages to them via the touchscreens on their seatbacks. If airline travel was one of the last places that you could escape conversation and advances from others, don’t worry. Virgin does give the opportunity to decline any freebies from other passengers.Continue reading...
Posted by Mark J. Miller on April 1, 2013 05:54 PM
Every April 1st, Google tries to outdo itself with a new array of April Fools' Day pranks, and this year was no different.
Users of Google quickly spotted a “Google Nose” link that appeared on April 1st that invited consumers to smell what they are seeing on the site, whether it is a campfire or a flower. Or, at least, it would let them “leverage new and existing technologies to offer the sharpest olfactory experience available.”Continue reading...
brands with a cause
Posted by Sheila Shayon on March 22, 2013 12:26 PM
Somewhere, a world exists where more people have access to smartphones than toilets. Oh, wait. That's us.
Today marks the 20th annual World Water Day, observed on March 22 since 1993 when the United Nations General Assembly declared a global effort to improve access to clean water. Today, hundreds of multinational brands, political figures, celebrities and NGO's are offering up innovative ways to participate.
While Americans are drinking more water than ever before, the rest of the world's water crisis is becoming increasingly pressing, making it to the agenda of the 2012 World Economic Forum in Davos. That's when a report ranked water among the top five global factors equal in impact to systemic financial failure and fiscal imbalance, with 2.7 billion people affected by water shortages, compounded by climate change and a global population nearing 8 billion.
Two official meetings—in The Hague, The Netherlands and at the U.N. Headquarters in New York City—are taking place today to facilitate a global conversation on water cooperation, this year's theme, but hundreds of initiatives have launched across the globe in support of the effort.
In keeping with the theme of 2013 being the year of water cooperations, we've found some inspiring examples of the type of public-private partnerships spurring sustainable innovation to address the world's water crisis.Continue reading...
Posted by Sheila Shayon on March 4, 2013 07:48 PM
Satellite-based navigation and fierce independence define Alaska Airlines, a lifeline and crucial carrier for the West Coast and Hawaii.
While Alaska Airlines is tiny compared to major carriers, with 124 planes as compared to United Airlines, which has more than 700 planes and four times the passengers, the airline has been instrumental in creating industry-changing technology and transforming convenience for its many remote passengers.
Alaska’s forbidding topography and extreme weather made it the first to refine satellite guidance which has transformed landing at the country’s challenging airports and become an integral part of the Federal Aviation Administration’s (FAA) plan to modernize the nation’s air traffic system at a projected cost of tens of billions of dollars.
“It doesn’t take a rocket scientist or a crusty old dog like me to fly these approaches anymore,” said Doug Wahto, a Juneau native who started flying with Alaska Airlines in 1970. Wahto said he used to read wind conditions by looking at snow blowing across mountain ridges. Continue reading...
Posted by Sheila Shayon on February 25, 2013 08:11 PM
It seems the great divide still exists—a great mother or a great worker. Now, two of the most powerful female executives have set their own standards for work/life balance, but there are faults to be had in both arguments.
Late last week, via an internal H.R. memo that was leaked to the press, Yahoo! CEO Marissa Mayer banned working from home. The Google transplant has been in the process of turning around embattled Yahoo! since taking over in July 2012, but her latest move is inspiring more backlash than anything.
"Speed and quality are often sacrificed when we work from home," says an internal memo from HR director Jackie Reses, obtained by tech blog All Things D. "We need to be one Yahoo!, and that starts with physically being together."
“Even if that was what was previously agreed to with managers and HR, or was a part of the package to take a position, tough … It’s outrageous and a morale killer,” an employee told All Things D.Continue reading...
Posted by Barry Silverstein on February 6, 2013 06:49 PM
In a deal that looks to dramatically change the complexion of the media business, U.S.-based Liberty Global will buy the U.K.'s Virgin Media to create a broadband company that will supplant Comcast as the world's biggest cable operator.
The $23 billion deal, if approved, will give Liberty Global a strong foothold in the UK. In an intriguing twist, it will also pit Liberty Global's John Malone against his former partner, the media mogul Rupert Murdoch, who operates British Sky Broadcasting (widely known as "BSkyB"). BSkyB has been a bright spot in an otherwise difficult time or Murdoch.
"This deal is good news for the company, its customers and our people," commented another media titan: Sir Richard Branson, the billionaire entrepreneur who founded the Virgin empire. "Together, Liberty Global and Virgin Media are in a great position to shake up the industry and bring the full power of digital technology to UK consumers."
The largest media acquisition of its kind since 2007 "will make the U.K. the ring for a straight slug fest between two global pay-TV heavyweights, John Malone and Rupert Murdoch, as they battle for UK fixed broadband, fixed voice and pay-TV subscribers," according to Adrian Drury, principal analyst at the global consulting firm Ovum.Continue reading...
ready for takeoff
Posted by Barry Silverstein on January 2, 2013 02:52 PM
It's a safe bet that the unabashedly iconoclastic head of the Virgin empire, Richard Branson, will continue to raise eyebrows in 2013, just as he has done in years past. The latest Virgin Atlantic branding campaign, the airline's first in two years, is just the latest example of Branson brashness that's quite out of the ordinary.
In a two-minute commercial that could pass for an X-Men trailer (and which Adweek calls "stylish, fantastical, tongue-in-cheek"), Virgin Atlantic has fun showing how a group of extraordinary children grow up to be extraordinary employees with superhuman abilities at an airline that is "flying in the face of ordinary." The global spot (watch below) will run in 30-, 60-, and 90-minute television commercials, with elements adapted for digital and cinema use, and slyly references the brand's wannabe-superhuman founder.Continue reading...