Posted by Dale Buss on December 11, 2013 10:01 AM
Like a film rushed to market just in time to qualify for Oscars consideration, the Jeep Cherokee began trickling into Chrysler dealerships over the last several weeks, after a troubling production delay for the all-new, very important, widely awaited new SUV. It was just under the wire, but Cherokee made the short list of finalists announced yesterday for the coveted North American Truck/Utility Vehicle of the Year award to be presented next month.
Speaking of Hollywood, Jeep has produced for Cherokee marketing at least one campaign similar to other recent efforts that have featured strong integration with entertainment properties. Launched this week, its four-month "Cherokee Effect" campaign centers on long- and short-form videos that feature TV stars whose 30-second versions air during the broadcast of each star's show.
Developed with NBCU, the spots feature Sarah Hyland of "Modern Family" (which airs new episodes on ABC but re-runs on USA Network), Baron Davis of Esquire Network's "How I Rock It," Kyle Richards from Bravo Media's "The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills," and Terrence Jenkins, E! News co-anchor. Each tools about in a Cherokee, and the long-form videos online include behind-the-scenes content and interviews. Continue reading...
Posted by Dale Buss on December 10, 2013 09:15 AM
Abercrombie & Fitch renews contract with CEO.
Boeing holds tax-breaks "bake-off" between states.
Chobani enters Super Bowl for first time.
Dr Pepper Snapple smells trouble with sewage in Houston.
GM names Mary Barra, industry's first female CEO, to succeed Dan Akerson, report says, while US loses $10.5 in bailout, which a study calls a financial success; meanwhile, company vacillates over ending Australia operations.
Jeep partners with NBCUniversal for Cherokee.
Kawasaki plants marketing seeds for '14.
Kia launches new Red Zone sub-brand for tuners.
Lululemon names new CEO as founder steps down as chairman. Continue reading...
Posted by Dale Buss on October 31, 2013 05:26 PM
Short on truly new-from-the-ground-up products compared with most of its competitors, Chrysler really couldn't afford to botch the launch of its new Jeep Cherokee into the heart of the fast-growing mid-size SUV segment in the US market. But it did.
And now Chrysler CEO Sergio Marchionne not only is having to make up for lost time and sales by finally getting past Cherokee production bottlenecks, but he also has felt compelled to vow that his company won't ever make the same mistake again.
Chrysler stopped making its previous entry in the segment, Jeep Liberty, last year, losing its place against the competition, and then hold-ups related to Cherokee's innovative nine-speed transmission put the launch several weeks behind. Cherokee is just now reaching Chrysler dealers across the country in enough volume to support the company's lofty sales ambitions for the vehicle.Continue reading...
Posted by Dale Buss on October 29, 2013 09:23 AM
Apple sees profits fall despite higher sales of iPhones and offers disappointing holiday forecast.
Red Bull is subject to big wrongful-death suit.
Sears considers spinning off Lands End unit.
Air Serbia launches in Europe.
Boeing considers non-union plant for 777x.
Burger King may rescue corporate cousin Heinz after McDonalds ketchup snub.
Consumer Reports drops Toyota Camry from its recommended list over crash test.
GM lifts Opel marketing in Russia.
Google amends EU antitrust proposals as it looks to triple number of Glass testers and prepares to launch smartwatch.
Guess signs first Indian model, Priyanka Chopra, as new brand ambassador.Continue reading...
Posted by Dale Buss on September 25, 2013 04:52 PM
Everyone involved in the 2009 bailout of Chrysler by the US government and Fiat knew that at some point there would be a vestigial mess to clean up even after the two parties, with the United Auto Workers, rescued the company financially and set the stage for the four-year sales boom and brand revival that the Detroit automaker has enjoyed.
Welcome to that mess. Fiat CEO Sergio Marchionne is trying to wrap up the four-year transformation of Chrysler by taking control of the last part of the company that is controlled by the UAW because of the concessions that it and its members made to help keep Chrysler alive four years ago. But he's got to get the union to give up that stake at an optimum price for Fiat, and he's having trouble doing that right now.
Marchionne is saying that he's planning an IPO for Chrysler soon, which would place a market value on Chrysler stock that he says is being overvalued by the union. Presumably that would help wrap things up, but perhaps at a price that Marchionne deems too high. So he has threatened for Fiat to back away from its increasing entanglement with Chrysler.Continue reading...
Posted by Dale Buss on September 24, 2013 09:36 AM
Chrysler files for IPO in valuation feud with UAW as company chokes on launch of new Jeep Cherokee.
Disney World and Disneyland cut line-cutting privileges for disabled after abuse.
Arby's names new CMO.
ADM plans to move top execs from Illinois plains to larger city.
Bugatti plans to sell handbags to broaden appeal of luxury car brand.
China will unblock Facebook, Twitter and the New York Times inside Shanghai Free Trade Zone.
Citigroup cuts mortgage jobs as refinancing boom wanes.
Domino's upgrades online ordering.
Foxconn deals with large-scale worker fight on China campus.
Kraft Foods leverages Corn Nuts content in display ads.
Macy's campaign explains localization strategy.Continue reading...
Posted by Dale Buss on September 4, 2013 06:39 PM
Happy days just keep happening for the US auto industry. Surprising even many in the business, the American car-buying recovery keeps on going and may even be acquiring new momentum. GM is among the outfits that are raising their expectations for full-year 2013 US sales to around 16 million units from the 15 million to 15.5 million vehicles most were predicting until now.
August sales reported today provided the latest boost of confidence and good news for auto brands. Overall sales rose by 17 percent over a year earlier, to the annualized selling rate of 16.1 million units, a statistic that reflects seasonal adjustments and came in at the highest point since late 2007. The industry hit a low of 10.4 million units for all of 2009 and has been climbing by double-digit percentages each year since then.
Individual brands mostly had banner performances in August. Subaru sales rose by 45 percent over a year earlier, with the brand topping 40,000 units for a month for the first time ever. Honda sales rose by 27 percent, Toyota by 23 percent, and Nissan by 22 percent. The Detroit Three chimed in with gains of 15 percent for GM and 12 percent each for Ford and Chrysler.Continue reading...
Posted by Dale Buss on July 25, 2013 07:02 PM
General Motors and Ford continue to head up the stubborn sales and financial recovery of the US auto industry. And now it increasingly looks like they've got many of the best products. If only Chrysler could keep up with them on all those fronts.
On the same day that GM posted second-quarter profits that beat analysts' estimates, the company achieved something else that ultimately could be much more significant. For the first time in 20 years, influential Consumer Reports named a domestic sedan as the best sedan it tested this year—and the winner was the seemingly unlikely Chevrolet Impala.
"It performs so well in so many different ways," Jake Fisher, director of automotive testing for the magazine, told the Detroit Free Press. "It really fires on all cylinders."Continue reading...