sports in the spotlight
Posted by Mark J. Miller on April 29, 2013 03:36 PM
Starting last Thursday, bigwigs from the NFL’s 32 teams gathered at New York’s Radio City Music Hall to select young players in the hopes that they would become the next John Elway, Gale Sayers, or O.J. Simpson. (Well, OK, maybe not O.J.)
Since 1980, the Draft has been televised and it audience has grown exponentially, with an expected viewership of 50 million for this past weekend's broadcast, Ad Age reports. With that kind of captive audience, sponsorships and advertisers have grown as well. There were 19 official sponsors of the event this year, up from 16 last year. The list included Anheuser-Busch, Nike, Verizon, Pepsi, GMC, Visa, EA Sports, Under Armour, Gatorade and Castrol. It's no doubt that the big names spent more than the $15 million spent across ESPN and the NFL Network last year and the $11.9 million spent the year before.
"To the credit of the NFL, it's the most robust league," Ernest Lupinacci, founder of branding consultancy Ernest Industries, told Ad Age. "They announced the [2013 regular season] schedule and people went crazy. It was as if they let us know they were bringing the McRib sandwich back."Continue reading...
Posted by Dale Buss on April 12, 2013 09:02 AM
JCPenney seeks to raise $1 billion as Martha Stewart loses a round in JCP-Macy's case.
Facebook's Mark Zuckerberg launches FWD.us with Silicon Valley heavyhitters on immigration reform.
Apple agrees to settle suit on iPhone and iPad warranties.
Argos plans digital "store of the future" to fight Amazon.
Bibigo Korean food brand partners with Psy.
Bitcoin finds Winklevoss twins rise in digital money as crash continues.
BlackBerry looks to apps and China for growth.
Burger King CEO leaves to take top job at H.J. Heinz.
Douwe Egberts goes to JAB for $9.8 billion.
Eli Lilly plans to lay off 30 percent of sales reps in major restructuring.Continue reading...
brands under fire
Posted by Sheila Shayon on March 21, 2013 03:18 PM
Lululemon Athletica revealed Monday that it expects earnings to drop this quarter due to a dud batch of its popular yoga pants made with its proprietary luon fabric, which its store managers indicated were being returned by customers who found them too sheer for wearing. “Some of our bottoms were made with a batch of black luon that doesn’t meet our standards so we’ve pulled them from our floors and our website.”
After being downgraded by Credit Suisse and others after the news, an earnings call today meant to detail the company's fourth quarter and full year 2012 results along with 2013 developments such as a move into golf and tennis apparel was instead taken up with answering analysts' questions about how it was handling the crisis—and offering more (ahem) transparency about the situation than has been offered to customers.Continue reading...
Posted by Sheila Shayon on March 19, 2013 03:49 PM
Is this a sign of things to come for Canada's retail darling? Lululemon, the Vancouver-based lifestyle brand and highly successful global retailer, over the weekend pulled its Luon black yoga pants from store shelves after discovering the sheer material was just too sheer, a result, some say, of poor quality control on the company's part. On Monday, the retailer announced it would be pulling various—but unnamed—styles of its popular (and pricey) yoga pants, explaining, “Some of our bottoms were made with a batch of black luon that doesn’t meet our standards so we’ve pulled them from our floors and our website.”
“At lululemon, our most important relationship is with our communities and our guests. We recently learned some information about some product that arrived in our stores and we wanted you to know right away,” according to the retailer's blog post. “We are working with our supplier to replace this fabric and other manufacturers to replenish the affected core items as fast as we can. What that means is there will be a shortage of these styles in our stores and online until our new stock arrives. We are also in conversation with our manufacturing partner to understand what happened during the period this fabric was made.”
The brand said it will offer refunds or exchanges to customers who bought the affected item in March, either online or in stores. Lululemon—which was just named Canada's top retail brand by Interbrand's 2013 Best Retail Brands report—is known for turning around products on short order. "Our guest knows that there's a limited supply, and it creates these fanatical shoppers," CEO Christine Day, a former Starbucks executive, told the Wall Street Journal. But the reported pants issue isn't a calculated sales strategy to boost demand and drive sales.Continue reading...
Posted by Mark J. Miller on March 18, 2013 05:37 PM
Athletic wear companies generally figure that partnering with professional sports leagues will lead to its brand name lodging into the minds of millions of potential consumers. They likely don’t predict that their product might be linked to major, life-changing injuries.
Riddell has been the official helmet of the National Football League for at least a quarter century and most of that time, has likely been good for the company. In recent years, however, as the NFL’s concussion problem has made itself more known outside of the league, the association might not be as positive.
The league is facing a lawsuit from more than 4,000 former players who claim they weren’t protected as well as they should have been, with part of the battle centering around helmets that may have offered better protection, but were stifled by the league, Bloomberg reports.Continue reading...
brand vs. brand
Posted by Mark J. Miller on February 22, 2013 12:13 PM
Under Armour is not happy with Nike right about now. The point of contention is over the phrase “I Will,” which Under Armour trademarked back in 2000 and has used in many ad campaigns, including one launched last week, its largest in history.
Nike, famous for its “Just Do It” tagline, has been using the phrase “I will” in its ads a little too much recently for Under Armour’s liking. So, a trademark suit was filed Thursday to stop Nike from using “any form of that phrase” as well as to turn over “unspecified punitive damages for trademark infringement and unfair competition,” the Baltimore Sun reports.
The ads, which Nike placed on Facebook and Twitter late last year, use “I will” to begin sentences such as “I will finish what I started” laid over an image of a basketball player dunking. Over an image of runners, Nike placed the text “I will sweat while they sleep.” Another ad that Under Armour is surely seething about is one for Nike’s #makeitcount campaign, which gives a laundry list of what different athletes will do in 2013, ending with “We Will #makeitcount.” Continue reading...
Posted by Shirley Brady on February 13, 2013 08:43 AM
American Airlines and US Airways finalize merger details.
Comcast buys balance of GE's stake in NBCUniversal for $16.7 billion.
Yahoo CEO Mayer looks to focus mobile, expresses disappointment in Microsoft search deal.
Adidas will reveal Boost running innovation at New York event.
Apple CEO Cook feels brand's stores are too small; a Google payday might help.
Barclays CEO pressured to get moving on revamp.
BBC Worldwide appoints global editorial director.
Blockbuster UK closes 164 more stores.
Dior sees former designer John Galliano re-offend Jewish community.
Facebook eyes books, movies and TV content as Zuckerberg's full philanthropy revealed.
Ford assures dealers on Lincoln MKZ supplies.Continue reading...
Posted by Mark J. Miller on September 27, 2012 11:35 AM
New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady is one of the most-watched NFL players in the biz, particularly by folks who don’t care for the game. Being married to supermodel Gisele Bundchen will do that for a guy.
So it set tongues wagging Wednesday when Brady showed up at his weekly Wednesday press conference wearing a gray sweatshirt that had the Nike logo that is usually there on the sleeve covered up with a little piece of white tape. Nike, of course, is the official supplier of the NFL’s apparel. But, as NESN points out, Brady has a deal with competitor Under Armour.
Brady talked about plenty of things, such as his ailing right shoulder and the team’s 1-2 record. But he didn’t address how that piece of perfectly sized tape happened to get onto his sweatshirt right at that particular spot.
The Boston Globe's New England Patriots beat reporter, Shalise Manza Young, tweeted the photo above and later commented, "Brady has vested interest in UA - not just spokesman, gets share of profits."Continue reading...