Posted by Dale Buss on December 13, 2013 09:19 AM
Boeing sees collapse of its renewed talks with machinists for 777X work.
Coca-Cola shakes up Americas management.
Ford plans to add 5,000 US jobs in 2014, hatches three new plants globally, and announces driverless-car initiative.
Bolthouse Farms leverages innovative Instagram tech.
DaVinci Wines debuts Facebook promo.
DirecTV explores online-video service and counts on addressable ads for future growth.
Google mulls designing its own server chips in threat to Intel.
Hilton explores creating new hotel brand aimed at affluent Millennials.
Hyundai plans to tout Genesis, Elantra in Super Bowl.Continue reading...
Posted by Dale Buss on November 20, 2013 06:22 PM
Interrupt the parade celebrating the return of soup to the American pantry: Campbell Soup has reported a 30 percent drop in fiscal first-quarter earnings, and much of it—perhaps surprisingly—had to do with a moderation in the recent rebound in its soup sales.
Most of the falloff had little to do directly with less interest by US consumers: Campbell reported major "retailer inventory movements" related in part to a late Thanksgiving, as well as increased marketing outlays for soup—and both factors hugely hurt Campbell's soup sales and profitability.
But Campell's condensed-soup sales decreased by 7 percent and sales of ready-to-serve soups declined by 11 percent in the period, and some of that was due to a basic shortfall in demand. "I'm disappointed in Campbell's first-quarter performance," CEO Denise Morrison said, appropriately basically.Continue reading...
Posted by Dale Buss on May 30, 2013 10:39 AM
Campbell has joined the organic-foods derby with its acquisition of Plum Organics, but the CPG titan plans to take best advantage of its new purchase by letting Plum continue to be Plum.
Co-founder Neil Grimmer will stay on for Campbell to run the brand, a Silicon Valley-based company that has become one of America's biggest players in the fast-growing natural and organic market with its purees, savory items and other foods and snacks for babies and toddlers, adding up to about $93 million in annual sales.
If Campbell's move to snap up this burgeoning better-for-you player seems familiar, that's because it should. Campbell's deal, announced last week, follows in quick order the acquisition of most of Happy Family Brands, a major Plum competitor in the baby-and-toddler space, by Groupe Danone (parent of Dannon USA) of Paris; the recent acquisition of BluePrint and Ella's Kitchen by Hain Celestial; and Post Holdings' acquisitions of Attune Foods and Hearthside Food Solutions.Continue reading...
Posted by Dale Buss on November 2, 2012 09:07 AM
Chrysler exec tweets a rebuff about Donald Trump comment on Jeep jobs, as UAW leads ethics complaint vs Romney over auto rescue remarks.
Apple's iPad Mini launches globally to shorter than expected lines; secures Lion trademark.
Barclays facing a $470 million fine for alleged energy market manipulation, and a corruption probe.
Australian court rejects free range trademark move.
BlackBerry 10 is on schedule for early next year, RIM says.
Bloomberg Businessweek pins Sandy on global warming in cover story.Continue reading...
chew on this
Posted by Dale Buss on October 18, 2012 12:47 PM
Two years ago, Bolthouse Farms excited childhood-obesity activists with an innovative marketing campaign to get more kids chomping on baby carrots with the tagline, "Eat 'Em Like Junk Food." The initiative helped Bolthouse Farms reignite its long-quiescent sales of baby carrots and presumably played a role in making the Bakersfield, Calif.-based company attractive enough to be acquired by the Campbell Soup Company earlier this year.
Now, Bolthouse has come up with a second act for its baby carrots marketing: Shakedowns, all-natural dry seasonings that coat baby carrots in a bag. Baby boomers might be reminded of the classic Shake N Bake Chicken that their moms used to, well, shake and bake, because they're the target for Shakedowns as much as their kids are.
"We were introducing [a focus group] to the 'junk food' campaign, and teenagers there were saying, 'Well, why don't you season [baby carrots] like Doritos?" Todd Putman, CMO for Bolthouse Farms, told brandchannel. "We thought, 'OK, how do we do that?' We went on a long innovation journey. But we immediately thought it was a great idea."Continue reading...
Posted by Dale Buss on October 5, 2012 01:12 PM
When companies age, they turn to innovation as the way to get their corporate blood pumping again. That's clearly the case with the Campbell Soup company, which has come out with a variety of new soup products, broadened its product lineup under the V8 brand, and taken other innovative steps since Denise Morrison became CEO about a year ago. But it's still been a rough ride as she seeks to turnaround the company's financial results — she's closing two factories due to "excess capacity" and laying off 700 workers in an attempt to "improve supply chain productivity."
Morrison told a group this week that there's been a definite method to her approach, including using "disciplined creativity" based on studying the successes of other innovative firms, and a team-based product-development philosophy that she learned in part from firms in Silicon Valley.Continue reading...
Posted by Dale Buss on July 25, 2012 04:04 PM
There's more riding on the shoulders of New York Giants star wide receiver Victor Cruz this year than hopes for the team's repeat of a Super Bowl championship: He also must bear part of the burden of turning around Campbell's woeful soup franchise.
Campbell will feature Cruz in a reprise of its "Mama's Boys" campaign of old for Chunky Soup, an iconic effort that harks back to when Americans still ate more Campbell's soup each year than the year before. That isn't the case anymore for Campbell even after the Great Recession, increased advertising spending, and the latest move — a spate of new products aimed at Millennials — have failed to turn around the fortunes of this venerable soup business.
That's why Campbell's CEO Denise Morrison this week was finally telling investors that, "by itself," the soup business "cannot take us where we want to go." Her vision of a Campbell of the very near future is based on its Pepperidge Farms brand, growing V8 beverage franchise and its recent acquisition of Bolthouse Farms and its packaged fresh foods and juices.Continue reading...
let's make a deal
Posted by Dale Buss on July 9, 2012 05:08 PM
Apparently tired of just prodding its unresponsive soup business into a turnaround, Campbell Soup made a big diversification move Monday by agreeing to acquire Bolthouse Farms for $1.55 billion. Bolthouse began in 1915 as a big carrot farm run by William Bolthouse near Bakersfield, Calif., and has scored a number of successes over the last few years in the better-for-you food, beverage and snack space — not to mention trying to put baby carrots top of mind.
By purchasing the Bolthouse brand from a private equity firm, Madison Dearborn Partners, Campbell gains a premium beverage business to complement its growing portfolio of V8 beverages as well as a fresh-carrot business that Campbell believes could be a healthy-snacking opportunity.
In addition to its implications for Campbell, the move also represents a further homogenization of America's biggest consumer-packaged-goods conglomerates, making Campbell look a little more like Kraft, PepsiCo and Coca-Cola as they all diversify strategically into more better-for-you categories.Continue reading...