Posted by Dale Buss on October 22, 2012 01:13 PM
The market for all-electric cars continues to slump, with the bankruptcy filing of one of its largest suppliers of batteries, struggles for Nissan's Leaf, and the continued difficulty of the top end of the EV market, Fisker, to get over the hump.
But meanwhile, the market for hybrids continues to brighten — espeically if that hybrid has a Prius nameplate. Toyota continues to extend its dominance of the hybrid-electric market by promoting its Prius family of four models. Having left its competitors' hybrids in the relative dust, Toyota now is girding for an effort by Ford to plug (so to speak) its own hybrid-only sub-brand, C-Max.
In fact, Prius now is doing so well in America's biggest hybrid market, California, that it has passed long-time leaders Honda Civic and Honda Accord to become the No. 1-selling vehicle line of any kind in the state.Continue reading...
Posted by Dale Buss on October 8, 2012 03:08 PM
Nissan is doubling down on its investment in the Leaf electric vehicle in a big way, by opening a $1.6-billion factory in Smyrna, Tenn., to bring to the U.S. production of a car that has been built in Japan until now. Although Nissan is selling fewer Leafs than a year ago, the Japanese automaker — which just moved up 30 percent to #73, with a brand valuation just shy of $5 billion, on Interbrand's new Best Global Brands report — is determined to turn around Leaf's fortunes.
In addition to localizing Leaf production, Nissan underscored the EV's woes late last week as word got out that it plans to introduce a budget version of the nameplate next year in a bid to make the sticker price more plausible to more Americans, according to Automotive News. The low-cost trim level would be positioned below the two higher-spec Leaf versions currently on the market, apparently, and will debut as part of a 2013-model facelift of the entire Leaf line. Continue reading...
Posted by Barry Silverstein on October 3, 2012 12:06 PM
A once-in-a-decade occurrence in China, the overlap of Chinese National Day and the Mid-Autumn Lunar Festival, is giving Chinese consumers a rare eight-day period with no work or family obligations. As a result, Chinese tourists are traveling in China and flocking to other areas, including Hong Kong (now in mourning following a ferry crash that killed 38 holiday revelers) and Europe.
While less than three percent of the Chinese have a passport, that number is rising 20 percent each year, according to Reuters. That means the current travel period is likely to be dwarfed by long-term prospects for Chinese tourism. It's true that China's economy has slowed along with the domestic appetite for luxury, but a segment of the population is decidedly well-heeled, and they still love to travel and shop.
It's certainly not stopping brands from pushing ahead in China — Louis Vuitton recently opened a flagship in Shanghai, and Ralph Lauren just opened five stores in China in the past two weeks, as David Lauren, the brand's EVP of Advertising, Marketing & Corporate Communications, told the New York Times' Andrew Ross Sorkin in a discussion at the Interbrand/New York Stock Exchange 2012 Executive Marketing Summit on Tuesday.Continue reading...
Posted by Sheila Shayon on October 2, 2012 02:02 PM
Social innovation is at an all time high and campaigns integrated with social media are the latest incarnation exemplified by the new Mercedes-Benz #YOUDRIVE Twitter campaign, which will let fans help shape the ending. Ever the innovator on digital, Mercedes-Benz is up 10 percent in Interbrand's just-announced 2012 Best Global Brands report.
TV viewers in the UK will ‘drive the action’ of a three-part story about the new Mercedes-Benz A-Class to be shown this weekend during commercial breaks in "The X Factor." A cat and mouse caper features a young music star (played by Top Boy actor Kane Robinson) aided by a female accomplice attempting to secure a secret gig that authorities are keen to close down.Continue reading...
Posted by Dale Buss on October 2, 2012 01:14 PM
How low can you go? If you're Carlos Ghosn, you want to build a car cheap enough that Nissan finally can compete in the very lowest-priced segment of auto sales throughout the developing world. So as promised earlier this year, Nissan — up 30 percent on Interbrand's just-released 2012 Best Global Brands report — is moving forward with a plan to delve into the ultra-low-cost car market by offering a model for about $3,000 to $5,000.
And the Nissan-Renault alliance has promised to do so through a revival of the Datsun brand. Nissan plans to offer six Datsun vehicles, beginning in 2014, at a price range lower than all but a handful of smaller car makers in China and India, Ghosn told the Wall Street Journal. A $3,000 Datsun would be about one-third of the price of the currently least expensive Nissan, the $8,000 Tsuru compact.
By not doing so previously, the CEO of Nissan and Renault said that the company has left itself out of about 40 percent of the potential market in countries including India, Indonesia and Russia. "We just see an opportunity," Ghosn explained earlier this year. "Today, in all the markets we are present, there is a level of price below which we cannot compete, we have no offering. The risk is to do nothing."Continue reading...
Posted by Shirley Brady on October 2, 2012 08:45 AM
Interbrand's 2012 Best Global Brands report sees Coca-Cola on top, Apple and Samsung make gains, Disney and HP decline, and BlackBerry lose 39 percent of brand value.
Samsung files to add iPhone 5 to Apple patent lawsuit as US court lifts injunction against Galaxy Tab sales and Galaxy S3 outsells iPhone 5 in UK.
Amazon plans to hire 10,000 British temp employees for the holidays.
American Airlines accuses pilots of sabotage as loose seats embarrass execs.
American Express ordered to refund $85 million to customers and pay $27.5 million in penalties.
Apple's iPad Mini rumored for Oct. 17 unveiling.
Cadbury wins exclusive right to its signature purple color in legal battle.
Disney unveils new homepage with entertainment focus.
Facebook sells more access to members as part of ad analytics push; Wall Street approves.
Google's stock market value passes Microsoft's for the first time.
Guinness launches "cloud TV" campaign.Continue reading...
Posted by Shirley Brady on July 5, 2012 01:45 PM
Siemens, #8 on Interbrand's 2012 Best Global Green Brands ranking, released this video today highlighting its renewable energy solutions. The description: "In times of increasingly complex challenges for sustainable energy supply, Siemens provides a leading portfolio of economically efficient solutions for renewable power generation to address the changing requirements of generations to come."
Posted by Shirley Brady on July 3, 2012 11:29 AM
Citi released a video today promoting that in May, Citibank became the first bank in the world to achieve LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) certification for 200 projects from the U.S. Green Building Council. The brand rose two places on Interbrand's just-released Best Global Green Brands ranking with the comment:
Citi Group improves on this year’s ranking by 2 spots, now sitting at #44. While the banking institution continues to navigate turbulent waters due to global economic conditions, Citi managed to increase the public’s perception of its environmental efforts, thus closing its perception/performance gap significantly since last year’s assessment. More recently, Citi joined forces with Google to finance a large wind energy center in California and embarked on a joint venture with SunPower to finance residential solar lease projects. The financial institution still remains in the latter portion of the ranking, partially due to its large-scale investments in coal industries, which contribute heavily to climate change effects.