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brand strategy

5 Questions with Seth Goldman, TeaEO of Honest Tea

Posted by Dale Buss on June 23, 2014 10:40 AM

It took 10 years for Honest Tea to sell its first 112 million beverages as a savvy but slowly growing startup out of Bethesda, Md. But since Coca-Cola purchased its first interest in the organic-tea innovator in 2008, Honest Tea has sold 888 million units.

That totals one billion bottles, and co-founder and TeaEO Seth Goldman and his crew celebrated the landmark sale this week.

Many of those were sold last year alone, when Honest Tea achieved $112 million in sales. Along with rapidly accelerated sales—thanks to a vastly expanded distribution footprint and retail presence around the United States—there have been lots of other changes at Honest Tea since Coke took a minor share and, especially, after the beverage giant acquired the company in 2011 as part of its continuing experimentation with healthy-beverage segments.

Goldman still runs the company, and Honest Tea is sticking to its tried-and-true formula of low-calorie, organic teas and other beverages with authentic ingredients. But now he’s got the resources to stretch the brand into segments and categories where it couldn’t manage to go until it came under Coke’s ownership—and even a little cushion to fail occasionally.Continue reading...

brand news

In the News: IKEA, Walgreens, Microsoft and more

Posted by Dale Buss on November 22, 2013 09:14 AM

In the News

IKEA under investigation in France for snooping on workers.

Walgreens opens nation's first energy-net-zero retail store.

Microsoft heats up gaming-console wars with debut of Xbox One.

Air New Zealand launches "Middle Earth" campaign tied to release of The Hobbit movie.

Acer brings back founder without pay to help struggling PC maker.

Amazon amps up for winning holiday as executive predicts quantum leap in online alcohol sales.

Apple wins a patent retrial against Samsung.

Bauer Media launches digital brand aimed at wealthy young women. 

Beam and Cinnabon to introduce co-branded vodka.

Caterpillar is probed for possibly dumping parts in the ocean.Continue reading...

brand news

In the News: Microsoft, QVC, Yahoo and more

Posted by Dale Buss on August 23, 2013 09:33 AM

In the News

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...

sip on this

Honest Tea's Index Results Might Not Surprise You, but It Gets You Thinking—About Honest Tea

Posted by Dale Buss on July 23, 2013 07:26 PM

Honest Tea has spread research for its National Honesty Index from sea to shining sea this year, and some of the results will surprise no one: Washington, D.C., was the "least honest" in the measurement, while laid-back Alabama and Hawaii tied for "most honest."

How was "honesty" measured? As in earlier versions of the annual test, Honest Tea set up unattended kiosks stocked with its beverages and offered them for $1 on the honor system. For 10 days in July, Honest Tea tested 61 total locations throughout the country and collected data on how many people paid for the beverages—as well as, curiously, participants' characteristics such as gender, hair color, and whether they were wearing hats.

Only 80 percent of D.C. residents paid for their beverage. "The results are what they are," Seth Goldman, "TeaEO" of Honest Tea, told brandchannel, acknowledging that company headquarters in Bethesda, Md., is guilty of being in the Beltway. "There's no spin to them. We're sharing them."Continue reading...

brand news

In the News: KFC, Honest Tea, Myspace and more

Posted by Dale Buss on June 13, 2013 09:16 AM

In the News

KFC drags down May results for Yum! Brands in China.

Honest Tea predicts over $100 million in sales in 2013.

Myspace runs first TV ad in revival bid.

Airbus takeoff of A350 pressures Boeing.

Amazon's Kindle debuts in India

Apollo Tyres of India buys Cooper Tires for $2.5 billion.

Audi develops "road frustration index" as it sees new sedan variant becoming best-selling version of its A3.

BMW is sued by US over criminal background checks in hiring.

Burger King faces PR mess in razor-blade mishap.

Cosi CEO resigns.

ESPN pulls plug on 3-D channel.Continue reading...

Groupe Danone Seeks Out Link to Moms with Happy Family Purchase

Posted by Dale Buss on May 13, 2013 01:53 PM

Groupe Danone purchased Happy Family brands for its expertise in organic baby food, for sure. But another, less-appreciated target in the transaction announced today was the American startup's command of the mommy-blogger market.

Happy Family and its parent Nurture "are very linked to moms," Agnes Danthonay, spokeswoman for the Paris-based parent of Dannon USA and the world's largest yogurt maker, told brandchannel. ''They have the biggest network of [mommy bloggers] within the United States, and that's something we really looked at: How can we better use social networks to gain proximity with consumers?"

Danone signed a deal for a 92 percent stake in Happy Family mainly because of its strong position as one of the originators of mainstream organic baby food in the US market. Happy Family nearly quadrupled its revenues over the last three years, to $62 million last year, in part by extending its product line and brands to include squeezable pouches of fruit purees that are even meant for adults.Continue reading...

sip on this

Coke Plans to Reshape Bottling Industry After Posting Positive First-Quarter

Posted by Dale Buss on April 16, 2013 04:39 PM

Coca-Cola took one step back a few years ago by acquiring large pieces of its bottling operations. Now the company plans to take two steps forward by handing back big chunks of its bottling system to selected independent bottlers as part of Coke's overall creation of a national bottling and distribution system that will give it far more control over sales, distribution and balancing of its brands.

Specifically, Coke disclosed a rough framework for handing off distribution in certain geographic areas to five established, independent bottlers either through an outright sale, a swap of territory or other arrangements. Closings, after more negotiations, are expected by year-end.

"We are intent to make the necessary changes in the format and architecture of production to achieve ... a coast-to-coast, nationally run production system," Coke CEO Muhtar Kent said on Tuesday's earnings call, according to the Wall Street Journal.

Under the new arrangements, the bottlers will be able to take part in that model by purchasing trucks, coolers and other equipment to distribute the products in their territories, the newspaper said. The national model also will enable Coke to be more responsive to large customers like Walmart because the company can make centralized sales and marketing decisions. PepsiCo similarly concentrated its bottling operations three years ago but Coke has moved first on the next step.Continue reading...

brand news

In the News: Nike and Oakley Drop Pistorious, Tiffany vs Costco Heats Up

Posted by Shirley Brady on February 18, 2013 05:31 PM

Brands to Watch

Nike and Oakley drop paralympic athlete Oscar Pistorious following steroid allegations during girlfriend's murder investigation.

Costco CEO addresses Tiffany suit for alleged trademark infringement in all-company email (exclusive).

Starbucks expands India footprint to seven stores as company tests video chat drive-through ordering and expands Starbucks Evenings concept to Washington's Dulles airport.

Carnival cruiseship fire blamed on fuel line leak.

China vows to crack down on "malicious" trademark registrations.

Disney's Hong Kong Disneyland theme park finally turns a profit thanks to Toy Story attraction.

Amway quietly builds brands and racks up sales.

BP prepares to go to court over Gulf spill.Continue reading...

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