brands under fire
Posted by Sheila Shayon on May 13, 2013 06:39 PM
The rescue efforts in Savar, Bangladesh have officially been turned over to recovery as the death toll surpasses 1,100 in what has become the worst accident in the history of the garment industry. But 20 days later, it seems that progress and change is beginning to emerge from the rubble of a decrepit industry.
The Bangladeshi government has agreed to let garment workers form trade unions without the permission of factory owners—a breakthrough in workers' rights in a de-regulated country, where garment factories were shut down this week following worker unrest over wages and conditions.
The proposed safety plan, backed by a coalition of labor groups, calls for independent inspections of factories and a legally binding fire and building safety plan requiring retailers to help pay for improvements to factory safety and is an amendment to the 2006 Labor Act lifting restrictions on forming trade unions in most industries.
The pact also calls for changes regarding severance payments, welfare fund payments, management practices and payment and banking standards. In what could be a game-changing announcement, Swedish retailer H&M announced Monday that it will sign the binding agreement.Continue reading...
sports in the spotlight
Posted by Mark J. Miller on April 23, 2013 07:07 PM
While NBA fans who are lucky enough to get playoff tickets will file out of each game wearing pretty much anything that has their team’s branding on it, the players they worship will be making completely different choices—and every apparel brand out there would love for that choice to involve them.
In last year’s Finals between the Oklahoma City Thunder and Miami Heat, the Thunder’s Russell Westbrook let the world know that he thought he was responsible for the hipster trend to wear funky lensless glasses, USA Today recalls.
The playoffs just started this past weekend but it’s already gotten off to a good jump on the fashion front as the Heat’s LeBron James dropped some jaws (and not in a good way) with his Tommy Bahama-esque shirt and James Harden of the Houston Rockets showed up for post-game interviews wearing a shirt that involved a whole lot of pleather. Los Angeles Clippers stars Blake Griffin and Chris Paul also got into the act. Russell Westbrook wore a sleeveless leather top and gold bedazzled high tops after his team’s game Sunday.Continue reading...
Posted by Dale Buss on April 5, 2013 09:01 AM
HP board shakeup and chairman exit gives CEO Meg Whitman a chance to shake off troubles.
BP faults Deepwater Horizon claims overseer, launches first brand-wide fuel loyalty program.
BMW prepares X4 crossover for U.S. market, makes vehicles greener with fewer cylinders, less gasoline.
Al Jazeera America hires CNN's Ali Velshi as anchor.
Amazon's Jeff Bezos leads $5 million investment round in Henry Blodget's Business Insider.
Apple reportedly signs music labels for streaming service as Google's YouTube clinches deal with Universal Music.
Best Buy may have turned the tide on showrooming Amazon.Continue reading...
Posted by Mark J. Miller on March 12, 2013 04:22 PM
H&M has added another ampersand to its business portfolio. This one, though, is at a higher end than the attire found in the chain’s more than 2,000 locations worldwide.
& Other Stories launched on March 8th with a bash in London, where the new brand will have its first brick-and-mortar store that will offer the brand’s first clothing line as well as a number of products from other labels and designers. Called C-labs, these temporary partnerships include such companies as The Lake & Stars lingerie, Clare Vivier’s bags and accessories, Alyson Fox’s jewelry and fashion designs by Abigail Lorick Im, WWD reports. “We like working with people who we like,” Anna Teurnell, & Other Stories’ head of design, told WWD. “And these labels complement what we have already.”Continue reading...
Posted by Reneé Alexander on March 4, 2013 04:21 PM
After playing coy about its exact launch dates in Canada, Target has confirmed it's opening the first of its Canadian stores this week. Residents in three communities (Guelph, Fergus and Milton) west of Toronto will be able to check out the launch trio of Target Canada "pilot stores" that will open at 8 a.m. on Tuesday, part of the first wave of 24 stores soft opening this month in Ontario. As Target's press release puts it,
Like the majority of Target locations opening in Canada, the pilot stores feature a licensed Starbucks, as well as an in-store pharmacy designed to provide guests with superior patient-centered healthcare. “The Target team is excited to open these test locations as we put the finishing touches on our stores, assortments and inventory,” said Tony Fisher, president, Target Canada. “We look forward to delivering on our Expect More. Pay Less. brand promise and providing an outstanding shopping experience as we approach our grand opening in early April.”
The move kicks off the Minneapolis-based retailer's opening of up to 135 locations in former Zellers locations across Canada, 124 of those locations opening their doors this year. Target had said publicly it will start having soft store openings in March but it hadn't given exact dates or specific locations. In advance of this week's opening drive, the brand is practically building snowmen (see a recent Facebook cover image, above), drinking maple syrup straight from the bottle and painting its face at hockey games.
The retailing giant has been on an awareness-building campaign for its highly-anticipated arrival since late last year, one that is expected to ignite an all-out battle for consumers not seen since Walmart stormed the 49th parallel in 1994 with the acquisition of 122 Woolco stores.Continue reading...
Posted by Sheila Shayon on February 7, 2013 06:46 PM
As many high-end brands show off their latest designs at New York Fashion Week, Greenpeace has a big message for the fashion world at large: It's time to clean up your act.
The latest from Greenpeace’s global Detox campaign is its “Fashion Duel,” with Italian actress Valeria Golino leading the charge for the industry to make environmental stewardship a priority in their operations.
The "duel" sets out to rate 15 Italian and French high-end luxury brands on three areas of the global supply chain — leather, pulp and paper and toxic water pollution — and highlights their differences in policy on toxic water pollution and deforestation.Continue reading...
Posted by Sheila Shayon on January 28, 2013 05:51 PM
Hazardous conditions at Indian garment factories serving the U.S. and European markets have been highlighted by another tragedy.
Mixed amid the debris of a deadly blaze at the reportedly unlicensed Smart Export Garments factory on Saturday in a densely populated area of Dhaka, Bangladesh were charred clothing from European brands, including two owned by Spanish retail behemoth Inditex, owner of Zara. Government officials are investigating reports that the sole emergency exit at the factory was locked. Up to 300 employees were working when the fire broke out, and most died from asphyxiation.
Other labels visible in the Smart factory damage included French brands Sol’s, Scott and Fox and G Blog by Gemo along with Inditex’s Leftie’s and Bershka, German low-cost brand KIK and even a purchase order by New York’s M. Hidary & Company for Hawaiian Authentics swimwear, according to The New York Times and Agence-France Presse.Continue reading...
Posted by Sheila Shayon on December 13, 2012 02:01 PM
Following in the wake of Zara's capitulation, Levi’s is now the 11th brand to bow to pressure from Greenpeace's global Detox campaign. The denim giant has committed to eliminate releases of all hazardous chemicals throughout its supply chains and products. Still being pressured: Calvin Klein, Gap, and Victoria’s Secret as part of the green campaigner's goal “to expose brands until the use - and abuse - of hazardous substances is totally eliminated.”
The world’s largest denim brand, has agreed to eliminate all releases of hazardous chemicals throughout its entire supply chain and products by 2020. The commitment comes eight days after Greenpeace launched its “Toxic Threads: Under Wraps” report targeting global fashion brands releasing toxins in Mexico's rivers, resulting in a digital groundswell with more than 210,000 people calling on Levi’s to Detox, tens of thousands taking action on Facebook and Twitter, and over 700 people protesting outside Levi’s shop fronts in over 80 cities worldwide.
As part of its Zero Discharge Commitment, Levi’s (as outlined in a blog post) will start requiring 15 of its largest suppliers in China, Mexico and elsewhere in the Global South to disclose pollution data as early as June 2013, followed by compliance from 25 additional major suppliers by the end of 2013.Continue reading...