Posted by Barry Silverstein on July 28, 2010 01:00 PM
When GM announced it would first sell and then discontinue Saab, it was just another moniker like Hummer, Pontiac, and Saturn that was to be tossed onto the brand scrap heap. But somehow, Saab survived where the others didn't. The brand is now staging a comeback, but is it too little, too late?Continue reading...
Posted by Shirley Brady on June 21, 2010 06:30 PM
Criticism of BP has shifted in full force to CEO Tony Hayward, who has cancelled a planned speech tomorrow in London, and was criticized by the White House for taking time off to go yachting on the weekend.
The damage, to date, to BP's brand? An estimated $1 billion, according to reputation management firm General Sentiment. Adweek, meanwhile, calls BP's social media marketing "aggressive," while Brand Republic reiterates the need for more "brand humility" at BP and beyond.
In other brand news, Bavaria Beer's so-called ringleaders of the orange dress-clad ambush marketing stunt at the World Cup appear in court tomorrow.Continue reading...
Posted by Shirley Brady on June 17, 2010 07:00 PM
As expected, Tony Hayward's apologetic appearance in Washington today at a Congressional hearing on the oil spill was met with derision. BP's CEO was accused of stonewalling and being evasive, with the Guardian calling the proceedings "testy."
The New York Times notes the hearing's strangest twist (other than the ouster of a protester): an apology to Hayward over BP's $20 billion escrow fund by Texas legislator Joe Barton, who later retracted his words after fellow Republicans rebuked him. VP Joe Biden addressed Barton's comments, above.
New evidence indicates that BP's drilling problems at the spill site date back to February. BP is also seeking a $5 billion line of credit, two bankers tell Bloomberg News.
New Orleans also scrapped a BP-backed tourism campaign--with the tongue-in-cheek tagline, "This isn't the first time New Orleans has survived the British"--after it was leaked to the Guardian. More news after the jump.Continue reading...
Posted by Shirley Brady on May 25, 2010 12:56 PM
Hulk Hogan is suing Post Foods over "Hulk Boulder," a lookalike wrestler "humiliated" in a Cocoa Pebbles commercial.
AT&T could see 40% of U.S. iPhone subs decamp to Verizon; offers free Wi-Fi in NYC's Times Square.
P&G's emerging market opportunity downplayed by Citi analyst.
Disney calls off Miramax buyback talks with Weinstein Bros.
Gilllette Fusion rolls out Ultimate Summer Job campaign.
New Jersey loves MTV's Jersey Shore now it's making the state rich.Continue reading...
Posted by Sheila Shayon on March 29, 2010 11:51 AM
The venerable Volvo brand, known for reliability and safety, was sold yesterday by Ford Motor to a Chinese Conglomerate for $1.6 billion in cash and the rest in a payable note. The sale of this brand subsidiary is proof positive of China’s increasingly aggressive global strategy, and the shifting tides of dominance in the automobile business.
The Zhejiang Geely Holding Group is based in Hangzhou, and its majority-owned automotive subsidiary, Geely Automobile Holdings, is ranked #12 in overall production. Geely autos has made significant inroads manufacturing subcompacts and less expensive compacts – and now, it joins the big boys at the top.
The company is tightly controlled by founder, Li Shufu, a farmer’s son, who leveraged a motorcycle parts business into the successful and fast-growing company it is today.Continue reading...
Posted by Dale Buss on March 23, 2010 06:39 PM
Cadillac, Lincoln, and Hyundai are actually among the higher-quality brands in the US auto industry, as measured by J.D. Power’s latest survey of new-vehicle quality after three years of ownership. But most American consumers still don’t perceive the brands that way.
And it’s time for these and other automaker brands to do something about such gaps in perception and reality.
Arguably, more of the US auto market is up for grabs now than at any time in recent memory. The brand surgeries at General Motors, the debilitating woes of Chrysler, the self-inflicted wounds to Toyota’s brand – even a recall by Honda – have created more marketshare shifts than in decades, and the potential for even more.Continue reading...
Posted by Anthony Zumpano on February 2, 2010 12:03 PM
You’re a small car company that has never turned a profit, based in the bike-friendly Netherlands. For $74 million, you just purchased Saab – a poorly managed brand that lost a half-billion dollars last year – from General Motors.
So when asked whether it’s really possible for Saab to turn a profit within two years, if you’re Spyker, you reply: No problem! Spyker secured a 400 million euro loan from the government of Sweden, home to 3,400 Saab employees, which, when added to a few other loans from undisclosed sources, means the company no longer needs additional financing. At least that’s what Spyker is saying, as it predicts Saab profitability by 2012.Continue reading...
Posted by Anthony Zumpano on January 28, 2010 12:30 PM
Saab always seemed less like a child to GM than a Swedish foreign-exchange student who never returned home. For 20 years, this wasn’t much of a problem, but GM’s bankruptcy has forced the automaker to kick some kids out of the house.
GM planned to simply dump Saab along with Pontiac and Saturn unless it received an acceptable offer, and it appears a deal with Dutch luxury automaker Spyker has finally been reached.
Unless you’re Bernie Ecclestone, the Formula One chief who almost nabbed Saab for a buck two weeks ago, the agreement looks like a win-win-win-win deal.Continue reading...