Posted by Dale Buss on August 27, 2013 09:27 AM
Bill Ackman gives up stake in JCPenney.
Samsung confirms Galaxy Gear Smartwatch for Sept. 4.
Billabong reports record loss and writes down value of brands.
Adobe has some bold plans for online ad business.
Amazon exposes cloud's dark lining with weekend outage.
Apple plans to launch trade-in program for iPhone, report says.
AT&T sees its commercial straight man leap to Saturday Night Live.
Best Buy will see founder unload some of his shares this year.
Chevrolet does deal with University of Texas Longhorns for Silverado.
Cracker Barrel revamps menu with lighter dishes and rejects activist investor's third attempt to join its board.
Ford ramps up output of Fusion to challenge Toyota's Camry.Continue reading...
Posted by Abe Sauer on August 26, 2013 04:45 PM
It's been over a year since "Linsanity" took over in New York City before spurring a global marketing phenomenon. Since then, Jeremy Lin has become the face of numerous brands in China and Taiwan, including Nike, Gatorade, Volvo and KFC. It's the last of those brands that's currently using Lin in a way that Western consumers would likely never see, shedding some light on why Lin is such a valuable spokesperson in Asia.
China (and Taiwan) have seemingly become Lin's regualr off-season home after he shot to stardom. He is nearly as well integrated in Asian culture as he is in the US, with a Weibo account as robust as his Twitter. And when he's not being mobbed by fans, Lin spends his time touring the country with his JLin Basketball Camp and visiting sickly orphans. Could Asia ask for a better role model?Continue reading...
Posted by Dale Buss on August 23, 2013 09:33 AM
Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer says he will retire within 12 months.
QVC debuts second channel, QVC Plus.
Yahoo courts Katie Couric for video series.
Airbnb seeks to create "movie" entirely with Vine.
Al-Jazeera America makes debut with few national advertisers.
American Airlines and US Airways get states' support in merger bid.
Audi reveals new A8 family.
BMW will unveil X5 plug-in hybrid, featuring all-wheel drive, at Frankfurt show.
CBS cuts carriage deal with Verizon.
Coca-Cola hired private eye to snoop in Honest Tea trademark case.Continue reading...
Posted by Abe Sauer on July 2, 2013 11:46 AM
It may be best known as the home of China's Pandas, but Chengdu may soon be more appropriately known for one of its other contributions to the world: money. Depending on who you ask, it was the late Tang or early Song dynasty when Chengdu, located in China's western Sichuan Province, became the global birthplace of paper currency. As hundreds of executives from Fortune 500 companies gathered at this month's Chengdu Fortune Global Forum, the city looked primed to forget the panda and return to its financial pedigree.
Unilever is opening its first west China manufacturing plant in Sichuan, and VW's Chengdu plant is already months into its goal of 450,000 cars a year (and maybe even, someday, a VW China "hover car"). And where better to drive to than Chengdu's shiny new Apple Store? Chengdu is fattening with global corporations ready to gorge on the simmering consumer growth promise of underdeveloped western China. The numbers are staggering.Continue reading...
Posted by Dale Buss on June 18, 2013 09:27 AM
7-Eleven franchisees are accused by feds in immigrant exploitation scheme.
Starbucks to start displaying calorie counts on menus later this month.
Susan G. Komen Foundation names new CEO.
3M adds new products to its healthcare line.
AOL nears profitability in Patch bet on local news.
AT&T introduces solar-powered charging stations.
Boeing signs customers for stretch 787, Airbus also gets order for A380 and Embraer gets big launch order for jets from SkyWest.
Cheesecake Factory returns to growth mode.
Chrysler sees key deadline near in Jeep-recall dispute with US government.Continue reading...
Posted by Abe Sauer on June 14, 2013 12:45 PM
China is the second largest economy in the world and every significant brand's future is impacted by its growth (or collapse)—but who's got the time?! Here's the week's reads that will make you look like a keen China observer in case you find yourself immersed in a cultural conversation.
This week: McDonald's owns the night... KFC woes... Middle-class spending... GM exports... Buick and Toyota recalls... Adidas fakes... GSK scandal... Volvo and Carrefour look West... Hollister brah... Givenchy... Dreamworks' Tibet Code... Durex gets spanked... and more.Continue reading...
Posted by Abe Sauer on May 20, 2013 10:54 AM
The "Live Free" logo on the back of a jacket or the big, red "自由" ("Freedom") on the sleeve of Harley-Davidson riders in China may seem a wild bit of irony. To those who buy into China as the brutal 1984-like state dry of any freedom, it may seem like a bold, almost rebellious political statement but to the riders displaying them, it's neither.
The idea of freedom through consumption is exploding in China. More and more brands—both foreign and domestic—are using the message every day. While the concept of consumer choices and products offering "freedom" is global, the idea of "freedom" in China is very unique.
A recent Reuters photo essay showed the world what a China Harley-Davidson rally is like. There were more than a few cultural differences. While the Sturgis Rally is held in the dusty backwater of South Dakota, China's recent Harley rally was at a private lake resort just outside of Shanghai. China's Harley enthusiasts tend to be CEOs or the very wealthy, but Harley-Davidson ownership is booming in China for some of the same reasons as in the west. "For me [Harley] represents freedom, total freedom,” a rider named Phillip Chu told Reuters.Continue reading...
Posted by Dale Buss on April 15, 2013 07:14 PM
Volvo owners always knew they were different from other consumers. Now, the brand is launching a new, integrated advertising campaign in the US that explicitly appeals to the non-materialistic, minimalist ethos which differentiates Volvo aficionados from buyers of other luxury and near-luxury brands.
In the process, Volvo brand stewards hope to finally begin turning around the sales of a franchise whose US results peaked a decade ago, when the company was owned by Ford, and have kept on sliding over the last few years as Ford lost interest and then, in 2010, sold Volvo to Geely, a large Chinese automaker, for $1.5 billion.
Volvo owners' "interpretation of luxury is different but very real," Tassos Panas, vice president of marketing and product planning for Volvo of North America, told brandchannel. "They're more into life's experiences, and more into a Scandinavian simple design [of vehicles] versus a lot of clutter. They are very much luxury customers and love luxury products, but they don't feel a need to impress others."Continue reading...