recentpopularlog in

jerryking : product_launches   75

Brands Invent New Lines for Only Amazon to Sell WSJ
Jan. 25, 2019 | WSJ | By Annie Gasparro and Laura Stevens.

Amazon gets exclusive products, while brands receive faster customer feedback, marketing support and increased sales.......To build a big line of exclusive products on its site, Amazon.com Inc. AMZN 0.95% is pushing other brand manufacturers to do most of the work.

The online retail giant is asking consumer-goods companies to create brands exclusively for Amazon after finding that developing them on its own is too costly and time-consuming.....Amazon’s initiative is the latest example of the e-commerce giant flexing its muscles in order to offer the lowest prices and widest selection, as it seeks to cut into the market share of big-brand manufacturers.....Manufacturers generally benefit from selling their products through a range of retailers. Also, they risk cannibalizing higher-margin sales of their main brands by offering comparable products under different labels. But those entering deals with Amazon view the arrangement as a golden opportunity.

In exchange for creating exclusive products, the brands get help launching their products on Amazon.com, faster customer feedback when testing new products, marketing support, and, of course, revenue from the sales. They also can appear at the top of search results—a big draw given that Amazon’s platform lists an estimated 550 million items......Speed was paramount. “We had to take what would normally be 12 to 24 months of development to 90 days,”....Amazon, on its own, has been quietly adding to its in-house brands in recent years. Analysts estimate the site now offers more than 100. ....Amazon sometimes promotes its own brands higher in search results on its site, like “Amazon’s Choice” and sponsored items, or as default results in voice searches using Amazon’s Alexa virtual assistant.

In-house brands often generate a higher profit margin for retailers, including Amazon, and can draw in customers because they can’t find those brands elsewhere. But developing a new brand and formulating products takes time..... the program offers manufacturers a way to “launch brands and products directly to Amazon customers.”

Amazon is increasingly important for consumer-product manufacturers. It now accounts for roughly half of all sales online,.....Amazon’s program also can be used for “orphan brands” that manufacturers have stopped selling or that never made it to market.....Amazon has no issue going full-court press on private label, and pursuing all these brands. If the quality and pricing architecture don’t fit and they have to pivot, they’ll do so,” said Todd Mitchell, president of Compass Marketing Inc., which works with Amazon. “They’re not limited to the constructs of shelf space.”
accelerated_lifecycles  Amazon  brands  cannibalization  CPG  e-commerce  exclusivity  fast-paced  in-house  manufacturers  new_products  orphan_brands  private_labels  product_development  product_launches  shelf_space  speed 
january 2019 by jerryking
Craft-Beer Company Taps Streaming Service for Growth - WSJ
By Benjamin Mullin
Aug. 27, 2018

BrewDog, a Scottish beer company, is offering a streaming service featuring more than 100 hours of video centered on drinking culture, the latest effort by a brand to launch its own media venture.

“The BrewDog Network,” available on smartphone apps and online, costs $4.99 a month. Breaking through in a crowded subscription-video market won’t be easy.......The BrewDog Network will carry a mix of licensed and original content where drinking is an element, from food shows to travel series such as “Four Sheets,” hosted by bon vivant Zane Lamprey. “The BrewDog Show,” featuring the company’s founders, will also be available at launch.
liquor  trends  breweries  beers  craftsmanship  artisan_hobbies_&_crafts  product_launches  streaming  digital_media  subscriptions 
august 2018 by jerryking
Opinion | The Man Who Changed the World, Twice - The New York Times
May 8, 2018 | NYT | by David Brooks.
This column is about a man, Stewart Brand, who changed the world, at least twice. I want to focus less on the impact of his work, which is all around us, and more on how he did it, because he’s a model of how you do social change.....In 1965, Brand created a multimedia presentation called “America Needs Indians,” which he performed at the LSD-laced, proto-hippie gatherings he helped organize in California.

Brand then had two epiphanies. First, there were no public photos of the entire earth. Second, if people like him were going to return to the land and lead natural lives, they would need tools......launched the the “Whole Earth Catalog.”....the Catalog....was also a bible for what would come to be known as the counterculture, full of reading lists and rich with the ideas of Buckminster Fuller and others........When a culture changes, it’s often because a small group of people on society’s margins find a better way to live, parts of which the mainstream adopts. Brand found a magic circle in the Bay Area counterculture. He celebrated it, publicized it, gave it a coherence it otherwise lacked and encouraged millions to join.....The communes fizzled. But on the other side of the Bay Area, Brand sensed another cultural wave building-- computers!! Brand and others imagined computers launching a consciousness revolution — personal tools to build neural communities that would blow the minds of mainstream America. [See Fred Turner says in “From Counterculture to Cyberculture,” ].......Brand played cultural craftsman once again, as a celebrity journalist. In 1972 he wrote a piece for Rolling Stone announcing the emergence of a new outlaw hacker culture..... Brand is a talented community architect. In the 1970s, he was meshing Menlo Park computer geeks with cool hippie types. The tech people were entranced by “Whole Earth,” including Steve Jobs....In 1985, Brand and Larry Brilliant helped create the Well, an early online platform (like Usenet) where techies could meet and share. .......Brand’s gift, Frank Foer writes in “World Without Mind,” is “to channel the spiritual longings of his generation and then to explain how they could be fulfilled through technology.” Innovations don’t just proceed by science alone; as Foer continues, “the culture prods them into existence.”....... Brooks argues that the computer has failed as a source of true community. Social media seems to immiserate people as much as it bonds them. And so there’s a need for future Brands, young cultural craftsmen who identify those who are building the future, synthesizing their work into a common ethos and bringing them together in a way that satisfies the eternal desire for community and wholeness.

===========================================
Third, the age seems to reward procedural architects (e.g. Facebook, Twitter, Wikipedia, etc. , people who can design an architecture/platform that allows other people to express ideas or to collaborate. Fourth, people who can organize a decentralized network around a clear question, without letting it dissipate or clump, will have enormous value. Fifth, essentialists will probably be rewarded--the ability to grasp the essence of one thing, and then the essence of some very different thing, and smash them together to create some entirely new thing. Sixth, the computer is the computer. The role of the human is not to be dispassionate, depersonalized or neutral. It is precisely the emotive traits that are rewarded: the voracious lust for understanding, the enthusiasm for work, the ability to grasp the gist, the empathetic sensitivity to what will attract attention and linger in the mind. Unable to compete when it comes to calculation, the best workers will come with heart in hand.
David_Brooks  Stewart_Brand  community_builders  product_launches  counterculture  community_organizing  Silicon_Valley  '70s  trailblazers  social_change  role_models  via:marshallk  hackers  social_media  Steve_Jobs  books 
may 2018 by jerryking
IKEA Jumps Into ‘Gig Economy’ With Deal for TaskRabbit
Sept. 28, 2017 | WSJ | By Saabira Chaudhuri and Eliot Brown.

IKEA agreed to acquire Silicon Valley startup TaskRabbit—the online marketplace that connects people with freelancers willing to run errands and do odd jobs—combining the pioneer of the flat pack with a trailblazer of the so-called gig economy.
....Documents related to a financing round from 2015 suggest TaskRabbit then had a valuation of about $50 million....the deal represents a bigger strategic tack at the furniture company. It also underscores a broader shift at many large companies grappling with big changes brought on by digitization. Many established corporations are increasingly turning to Silicon Valley to help their business grow, or slow their declines—sometimes spending heavily on small venture capital-backed startups that have strong traction with young consumers.

Especially where older industries are shifting rapidly, deals have piled up. Auto makers have become prolific investors and buyers of self-driving startups. Wal-Mart Stores Inc. has become one of the more active buyers of startups as it grapples with a shift to e-commerce, including a June deal to buy men’s online clothier Bonobos.

Several large firms have launched small Silicon Valley outposts and venture capital arms of their own. Often, though, they say it makes more sense to buy these startups than build a new brand or operation themselves.

The TaskRabbit deal is IKEA’s first foray anywhere near Silicon Valley. The privately held company—when it has bought anything at all—has tended to focus on forestry and manufacturing firm purchases..... IKEA intends to also learn from TaskRabbit’s digital expertise. Retailers and brands globally have been racing to capture shopper data in a bid to personalize their offerings and build customer loyalty.......The bulk of IKEA’s sales are still made in its sprawling out-of-town superstores that house everything from plants to beds. It has 357 stores across 29 countries. But it has worked to adapt to a rise in online shopping, rolling out home delivery and click-and-collect options. IKEA has also been opening small, centrally located stores situated near public transport that stock a limited range of offerings and are also used as collection points.

The company’s website had 2.1 billion visits in fiscal 2016, up 9% from the prior year. Earlier in September, it launched an augmented reality app that lets people place IKEA furniture in their homes. It has also souped up its product range, offering tables and lamps that double up as wireless phone chargers and bulbs that can be controlled wirelessly.

“As urbanization and digital transformation continue to challenge retail concepts we need to develop the business faster and in a more flexible way,” Mr. Brodin said. “An acquisition of TaskRabbit would be an exciting leap in this transformation.”
IKEA  TaskRabbit  gig_economy  home-assembly  mergers_&_acquisitions  M&A  Silicon_Valley  large_companies  brands  Fortune_500  start_ups  e-commerce  home-delivery  BOPIS  augmented_reality  urbanization  digital_strategies  retailers  product_launches 
september 2017 by jerryking
Shanghai surprise
19 August/ 20 August 2017 | Financial Times | Helen Roxburgh.

It was this frustration that pushed Sy, who graduated with a masters in international business in France, to start making her own skincare products in 2015. Like many entrepreneurs in China, she chose to forego prolonged levels of planning and instead bounced straight on to social media platform WeChat to launch the business.

In Europe, you’d prepare everything first. In Shanghai you just try it and see what happens

WeChat has more than 900m monthly users, and is used not only for messaging but everything from paying bills, buying coffee, giving to charity and taxis. According to a report in 2016, 200m users have linked payment cards with their accounts, and a third spend more than Rmb500 a month via the platform. WeChat has been pushing its in-app payments and mobile-optimised digital stores to draw in businesses.

“It’s fantastic for entrepreneurs,” says Sy. “I had this idea, posted on WeChat, that I was going to be selling my own scrubs and body creams for Christmas, and was surprised at how quickly I started to get orders. Then of course I panicked because I didn’t actually have anything yet — but within a week a friend made me some simple packaging and I was off. I ended up selling out.” After six months, she started to run Lalu full time, selling mostly through online platforms. As well as expanding Lalu, Sy also launched a clothing brand, Nubien, inspired by bright African fabrics and clothing.
women  Africa  entrepreneur  China  Shanghai  personal_care_products  product_launches  beauty  WeChat  Lalu  start_ups  MBAs 
august 2017 by jerryking
Lego Turns to Digitally-Savvy Dane as Its New CEO - WSJ
By Saabira Chaudhuri
Updated Aug. 10, 2017

Lego named named Niels B. Christiansen, the 51-year-old former boss of Danish industrial group Danfoss A/S, as its new CEO. He replaces Bali Padda, a 61-year-old Brit who in December became Lego’s first non-Danish chief since its foundation in 1932.....The appointment comes as Lego, which employs 18,500 people, grapples with slowing sales growth and competition from smartphone apps and videogames. It is locked in battle with Mattel Inc. to be the world’s largest toy company by sales. For now, Mattel is slightly bigger, with $5.46 billion in revenue last year. Lego sales rose 6% last year to $5.38 billion, following a decade of double-digit growth, after a big marketing push in the U.S. failed to lift stalled sales there......Like rival Mattel, Lego is intensely focused on modernizing its toys for a digital era in which children spend more time on tablet computers and smartphones. The company launched an app in February that functions as a mini-social network, allowing children to share what they build online. It has also created Lego Boost, which combines computer coding with brick play, and is focusing on ways to use smartphones to bridge physical and digital play.

The executive reshuffle comes as arch rival Mattel has also sharpened its focus on technology. Earlier this year it named Margaret Georgiadis, a former president of Americas at Alphabet Inc.’s Google as its new CEO......Mr. Christiansen as having “transformed a traditional industrial company into a technology leader” while at Danfoss. He said the new CEO would look for digital opportunities in everything from sourcing and manufacturing to engaging with consumers and retailers, who are increasingly moving online.
Lego  brands  digital_strategies  Denmark  CEOs  appointments  toys  Mattel  play  product_launches 
august 2017 by jerryking
Instagram Finds Focus Under ‘Efficiency Guru’
April 13, 2017 | WSJ | By Deepa Seetharaman

Ms. Levine’s biggest contribution, Mr. Systrom says, is helping Instagram avoid the fate analyst Ben Thompson described: “Companies break every time they double.” [See reference to sublinearity in new book of Geoffrey West, “Scale: The Universal Laws of Growth, Innovation, Sustainability and the Pace of Life in Organisms, Cities, Economies, and Companies” (Penguin). Specifically, "infrastructure growth scales in analogous sublinear fashion]

In 2014, Mr. Systrom said he realized he and his co-founder, Mike Krieger, needed help to grow Instagram. Facebook had bought the startup for $1 billion two years earlier, when it had just 13 employees. The pressure was on for Instagram to make money and roll out products at a more rapid clip, and the co-founders saw the need for an executive to manage the expansion.

Marne Levine is “an efficiency guru” who has helped the Instagram app avoid some of the pitfalls of rapid growth. Ms. Levine has skills that are in high demand in Silicon Valley, where startups often struggle to get past their adolescence. Uber Technologies Inc., for instance, is seeking a second-in-command to help founder Travis Kalanick repair the ride-sharing company’s image after allegations of sexism and sexual harassment and the departure of several top executives. “We want to be the 10x company,” Ms. Levine, 46, says. “That means we need to think carefully about how we set up our operations, how we grow and how we scale.”.....A seasoned manager can instill discipline and order, helping new companies avoid wasting time and resources while adding a veneer of professionalism to attract potential customers.
Instagram  Facebook  focus  scaling  growth  Snap  Snapchat  expansions  COO  efficiencies  sublinearity  powerlaw  product_launches  speed  blitzscaling  operational_tempo  10x 
april 2017 by jerryking
Fast Response to ‘Brexit’ News: A Pop-Up Paper Finds Success in Britain - The New York Times
By NICOLA CLARK SEPT. 13, 2016 | NYT |

“It kind of dawned on me: Here was an audience that was so clearly identifiable and passionate,” said Mr. Kelly, a longtime British newspaper executive who is now chief content officer of Archant, a large British newspaper group. “If there ever was a time for launching a new newspaper, this is it.”

Less than two weeks later, in early July, The New European, a weekly print newspaper, hit newsstands nationwide. The paper, conceived as a finite, monthlong experiment, is now going into its 11th week after proving a surprisingly profitable hit with readers.....Some midsize publishers have focused on portfolios of smaller-scale titles that can be produced using the same infrastructure of presses, distribution and marketing networks. Those economies of scale can significantly reduce the marginal costs — and the risks — of developing new print products....earlier experiments, aimed at general-interest audiences, failed to capture enough demand from readers and advertisers to justify their publishers’ relatively modest initial investments....The New European was conceived as a niche publication--the 48 % of Britons who voted on June 23 to stay in the European Union Since it was meant to be short-lived, Archant avoided spending huge sums on market research or publicity campaigns. “We never set out to actually create a long-term brand,” “The way we structured it was to make money on a four-week run.....successful pop-up titles could be linked to popular political or social movements, or major sporting events like last month’s Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro.
pop-ups  newspapers  digital_media  Brexit  experimentation  new_products  product_launches  United_Kingdom  economies_of_scale  epiphanies  event-driven  events  social_movements  contextual  cost-structure  print_journalism  short-term  niches  short-lived  sports 
september 2016 by jerryking
How to Avoid the Innovation Death Spiral | Innovation Management
By: Wouter Koetzier

Consider this all too familiar scenario: Company X’s new products developed and launched with great expectations, yield disappointing results. Yet, these products continue to languish in the market, draining management attention, advertising budgets, manufacturing capacity, warehouse space and back office systems. Wouter Koetzier explores how to avoid the innovation death spiral....
Incremental innovations play a role in defending a company’s baseline against competition, rather than offering customers superior benefits or creating additional demand for its products.
Platform innovations drive some market growth (often due to premium pricing rather than expanded volume), but their main function is to increase the innovator’s market share by giving customers a reason to switch from a competitor’s brand.
Breakthrough innovations create a new market that the innovator can dominate for some time by delivering new benefits to customers. Contrary to conventional wisdom, breakthrough innovations typically aren’t based upon major technological inventions; rather, they often harness existing technology in novel ways, such as Apple’s iPad.......A recent Accenture analysis of 10 large players in the global foods industry over a three-year period demonstrates the strategic costs of failure to innovate successfully. Notably, the study found little correlation between R&D spending and revenue growth. For instance, a company launching more products than their competitors actually saw less organic revenue growth. That’s because the company made only incremental innovations, while its competitors launched a balanced portfolio of incremental, platform and breakthrough innovations that were perceived by the market as adding value.
attrition_rates  innovation  howto  life_cycle  portfolios  Accenture  breakthroughs  platforms  LBMA  Mondelez  product_development  new_products  product_launches  kill_rates  incrementalism  R&D  taxonomy  disappointment  downward_spirals  baselines  marginal_improvements  correlations  moonshots 
march 2016 by jerryking
All hail the hashtag: How retailers are drawing you in, one Facebook post at a time - The Globe and Mail
MARINA STRAUSS - RETAILING REPORTER
The Globe and Mail
Published Tuesday, Sep. 29, 2015

Welcome to Retail 3.0, in which retailers use social media in a bid to draw young shoppers such as Campos back to bricks-and-mortar outlets.

Just a few years ago trendy shops lured consumers with an in-store coffee bar or barber shop. But today a hot brew or hair trim isn’t enough: Retailers increasingly feel the pressure to attract cyber-savvy shoppers to their physical outlets with eye-catching social media experiences that can be shared multiple times.

The social-media initiatives range from fitting rooms in Kate Spade stores that provide a backdrop for selfies with “like?” in a speech bubble to luxury parka purveyor Nobis installing photo booths at its store launch parties; and department store Nordstrom, whose roots are in shoes, encouraging shoppers to “shoefie” (take a selfie of their footwear) next to the store’s name. The images, uploaded on social media, put a spotlight on the brands.....social-media posts can pump up sales during an event as much as 20 per cent. About 60 per cent of Canadian consumers say they’ve come into contact with different products and brands through social media and, of those, 46 per cent say the interactions resulted in them making more purchases, up from 32 per cent in 2014, according to a survey this year by consultancy PwC.
digital_influencers  event-driven  social_media  Retail_3.0  imagery  Marina_Strauss  product_launches  selfies  retailers  millennials  Instagram  Facebook  e-commerce  bricks-and-mortar  in-store  footwear 
october 2015 by jerryking
Tech City News: London to host first Food Tech Week
Weblog post. Newstex Trade & Industry Blogs, Newstex. Oct 1, 2015.

ProQuest Central: hackathon and food and distribut*

October will see the launch of London's first ever 'Food Tech Week' which will be celebrating all things food and facilitating tec...
London  United_Kingdom  product_launches  food  technology  hackathons  disruption  ecosystems  brands  fresh_produce  innovation  food_tech 
october 2015 by jerryking
Hollywood Talent Agency’s New Division to Manage Visual Artists’ Careers - WSJ
By KELLY CROW
Feb. 10, 2015
Should painters and sculptors be treated like movie stars? United Talent Agency thinks so.

The Beverly Hills, Calif., agency known for representing actors like Johnny Depp and Angelina Jolie said Tuesday it has launched a division called UTA Fine Arts to manage the careers of contemporary visual artists.

The move marks the first time a Hollywood talent agency has stepped into a role traditionally played by art galleries, and it underscores the growing commercial appeal that top artists wield in the global, multibillion-dollar art market.

Jim Berkus, chairman, said the agency won’t broker art sales or show the art as galleries do, but he said the art division will help contemporary artists amass financing for their creative projects and sign potentially lucrative corporate sponsorships and merchandising deals. Mr. Berkus said the firm will also assist artists who want to get more involved in the moviemaking business....The agency’s arrival is likely to rattle the art establishment, particularly the growing list of mega-dealers who have opened gallery branches around the world and are known for transforming artists into museum-ready superstars.

Marc Glimcher, who oversees the New York powerhouse Pace Gallery, said he thinks talent agents could drive a divisive wedge between artists and their dealers, who have historically guided artists toward commissions or relationships that may secure them a lasting place in art history.

“It sounds like an interesting idea, but it’s going to be super hard to pull off,” Mr. Glimcher said. “If you’re going to be an artist’s agent, you need to know more about their work, their prices and their collectors than their own dealer does—and no dealer will be induced to share that kind of information.”

Beyond market intelligence, Mr. Glimcher said talent agents will need to discern how many commercial deals an artist can shoulder without looking like a sellout to art-world insiders: “Do too much, and you’re just not cool anymore,” he added.
Hollywood  talent_management  career  contemporary_art  artists  product_launches  galleries  lawyers  entertainment_industry  market_intelligence  talent_representation  superstars  art_market 
february 2015 by jerryking
The Single Worst Marketing Decision You Can Make
Oct 29 2014 | LinkedIn | Ryan Holiday, Founder, Partner at Brass Check

Make something people want.

—Paul Graham

Growth hackers believe that products—even whole businesses and business models—can and should be changed until they are primed to generate explosive reactions from the first people who see them. In other words, the best marketing decision you can make is to have a product or business that fulfills a real and compelling need for a real and defined group of people—no matter how much tweaking and refining this takes...Some companies like Airbnb and Instragram spend a long time trying new iterations until they achieve what growth hackers call Product Market Fit (PMF); others find it right away. The end goal is the same, however, and it’s to have the product and its customers in perfect sync with each other. Eric Ries, author of The Lean Startup, explains that the best way to get to Product Market Fit is by starting with a “minimum viable product” and improving it based on feedback—as opposed to what most of us do, which is to try to launch publicly with what we think is our final, perfected product...marketers need to contribute to this process. Isolating who your customers are, figuring out their needs, designing a product that will blow their minds—these are marketing decisions, not just development and design choices.

The imperative is clear: stop sitting on your hands and start getting them dirty.
delighting_customers  start_ups  coding  growth  hacks  growth_hacking  marketing  Paul_Graham  lean  data_driven  product_launches  minimum_viable_products  visceral  experimentation  iterations  business_models  product-market_fit  good_enough 
october 2014 by jerryking
Bob McCown hits sports broadcast milestones and is still going strong - The Globe and Mail
COURTNEY SHEA
Special to The Globe and Mail
Published Sunday, Sep. 28 2014,

Over the past few years, friends were always saying to me that I should be “expanding my brand.” I didn’t really think much of it at first, but then about three years ago I made a list of other sorts of projects that I might be interested in getting involved in. I picked my two favourites, which were to form my own production company and to own a winery. I did both of those things, launching Fadoo Productions and buying Stoney Ridge Winery. Both have been going even better than I could have predicted. The production company recently shot the new Rush concert video which went to No. 1 on Billboard the first week it was out. It’s funny because the whole reason for starting these projects was to see if the value of this brand I had created could translate to ventures outside of broadcasting, but what I didn’t realize was how being part of new projects would contribute to my existing work.
passions  passion_investing  personal_branding  product_launches  radio  sports  broadcasting  vineyards  sportscasting 
september 2014 by jerryking
From healthy fries to segways: Why most products fail - The Globe and Mail
SUSAN KRASHINSKY - MARKETING REPORTER
The Globe and Mail
Published Thursday, Sep. 18 2014,

The vast majority of new product launches end up failing.

In fact, 72 per cent of new products are failures, according to a global study released by Bonn, Germany-based marketing consultancy Simon-Kucher & Partners. The firm surveyed 1,615 managers in 40 countries. It found that most newly launched products fail to meet their profit targets “because companies neglect or ignore essential pricing and marketing activities in their new product development processes.”.... set aside a budget for research to measure customer demand for the product, as well as what people are willing to pay for it......So many products are launched that haven’t established basic things, such as research into the need of the product, the efficacy of the product, testing the product with consumers,”

marketing a new product:

1. Is there a market for the product?
2. Can you own the name?
3. Do you have data that prove the idea has merit?
4. Do you have a credible, knowledgeable spokesperson who can talk about the product?
5. Have consumers or customers used the product and will they talk about their experience (hopefully positively)?
6. Have you had everyone you are talking to sign an NDA (non-disclosure agreement)?
7. Can you identify a third party who can corroborate that the world needs this product that will go on record?
8. How long will it take to manufacture the product and will you meet the deadline for the market (season, trade show, holiday)?
9. Do you have money to capitalize the manufacturing and launch of the product?
10. Do you have a business plan and a budget?
11. What is your day job and can you do both?
attrition_rates  stage-gate  failure  marketing  Susan_Krashinsky  new_products  product_development  products  product_launches  kill_rates 
september 2014 by jerryking
Starbucks to Launch Express Stores - WSJ
By CHELSEY DULANEY
Updated Sept. 5, 2014

Starbucks Corp. SBUX +1.02% said Friday that it plans to cater to busy commuters by launching smaller, express-style stores.

The new stores will have reduced beverage and food menus and will integrate the company's digital payment and mobile ordering systems to speed up service, the company said.
Starbucks  product_launches 
september 2014 by jerryking
Spotify launches in Canada as music streaming revenue jumps - The Globe and Mail
OMAR EL AKKAD - TECHNOLOGY REPORTER
The Globe and Mail
Published Thursday, Aug. 14 2014
Omar_el_Akkad  music  streaming  Spotify  product_launches 
august 2014 by jerryking
Bay Street law firm launches legal ‘incubator’ in Halifax
Jul. 02 2014 | The Globe and Mail | JEFF GRAY - LAW REPORTER

Torys says its new Torys Legal Services Centre, due to open this fall, will act for the Bay Street firm’s established corporate clients, performing high-volume, recurring legal work such as reviewing contracts or performing due diligence on corporate deals.
Bay_Street  contracts  cost-cutting  Halifax  law_firms  legal  Torys  product_launches 
july 2014 by jerryking
Can America Learn to Love Misshapen Veggies? - Elizabeth Segran - The Atlantic
ELIZABETH SEGRAN | JUL 1 2014 |

Daily Table, a grocery store he is launching this fall in Roxbury, a low-income Boston suburb. Rauch plans to salvage food discarded by supermarkets and sell it at very low cost to consumers who would not otherwise have the means to adequately feed themselves. If this experiment works, he plans to open stores like it around the country.

The main challenge in this endeavor involves acquiring nearly expired produce and circumventing legal restrictions against selling it after its expiration date.
grocery  supermarkets  fresh_produce  entrepreneur  start_ups  Trader_Joe's  product_launches 
july 2014 by jerryking
Google takes aim at Apple with new gadgets launch - The Globe and Mail
OMAR EL AKKAD - TECHNOLOGY REPORTER
The Globe and Mail
Published Wednesday, Jun. 25 2014,

Among the products unveiled were Google Fit (a health and fitness platform), Android Auto (which brings the popular operating system to cars) and Android TV.

Many of these products seem to mirror similar offerings recently released by Google’s chief rival, Apple. For example, at the iPhone-maker’s own developers’ conference earlier this month, the company boasted of its own fitness software platform, HealthKit, and a tool called CarPlay that offers drivers a safer way to use their iPhones in the car....In the fight for connected device dominance, the companies’ strategies are markedly different.

Whereas Apple’s mobile product lineup has always had a razor-sharp focus, Google tends to design and announce myriad product types and categories, and then quietly retire those that don’t catch on with consumers.
Omar_el_Akkad  Google  Android  software_developers  Apple  product_launches  privacy  connected_devices  Industrial_Internet  mobile_applications  wearables 
june 2014 by jerryking
Mall makeover: A new retail fight heats up - The Globe and Mail
TARA PERKINS AND MARINA STRAUSS Jan. 28 2014,

"I said to him, 'Look, you're missing an amazing opportunity,' " Mr. Sullivan recalls. "'We have a mall [the Eaton Centre] that has 50 million people a year walk through it. We are going to announce that we've got a Nordstrom deal shortly. And you have a great store at the other end, the Bay, which you've done a terrific job re-engineering. Why don't you think about putting a Saks in as part of that?....Dramatic changes in the retail landscape are providing a wake-up call for mall landlords, prompting them to replace tired retailers with new ones and leading Cadillac Fairview to launch a makeover of its Eaton Centre. There has been an influx of savvy foreign retailers, and every mall wants to be the first to attract the next big brand that migrates to Canada....."The ultimate goal is to have the right mix of anchors and small shops such that you maximize traffic, you maximize sales, and everyone wins."
Cadillac_Fairview  shopping_malls  HBC  Saks  Nordstrom  Marina_Strauss  retailers  product_launches  makeovers  anchor_tenants  store_within_a_store  luxury  landlords 
january 2014 by jerryking
globeadvisor.com: Shoppers makes move into e-commerce
October 23, 2013 | G&M | MARINA STRAUSS.
Drugstore chain to offer Optimum points to customers of Montreal-based online fashion retailer Beyond The Rack

The country's largest drugstore chain is teaming with flash-sale fashion website Beyond the Rack to give Shoppers loyalty cardholders the chance to rack up more rewards. It's an important entry for Shoppers into the world of online shopping, as global rivals move quickly to gobble up market share.

"We see it as a first step to e-commerce," said Jim Noteboom, senior vice-president of business analytics and financial services at Shoppers, which is rolling out the new Optimum-Beyond the Rack site on Wednesday.

Shoppers has already dipped its toes in cybershopping waters, launching an e-commerce site tied to its small upscale Murale beauty chain last year. But it faces competition from powerhouse retailers Wal-Mart Canada Corp. and Amazon.com, which are expanding their online beauty and consumer product stores.

Shoppers is betting that its partnership with Montreal-based Beyond the Rack, one of the largest online retailers, will help speed up its embrace of e-commerce.
Marina_Strauss  Shoppers  retailers  e-commerce  Beyond_the_Rack  fashion  product_launches  flash_sales  loyalty_management  beauty  personal_grooming  personal_care_products  brands 
november 2013 by jerryking
Do Things that Don't Scale
July 2013 | Paul Graham

The question to ask about an early stage startup is not "is this company taking over the world?" but "how big could this company get if the founders did the right things?" And the right things often seem both laborious and inconsequential at the time.
advice  start_ups  Y_Combinator  Paul_Graham  scaling  recruiting  experience  management_consulting  barriers_to_entry  product_launches  partnerships  customer_acquisition  user_growth  Steve_Jobs  unscalability  founders  questions 
november 2013 by jerryking
Manulife launches new private markets group
Nov. 11 2013 | The Globe and Mail |JACQUELINE NELSON.

Manulife Financial Corp. is formally launching a new institutional investment business group after a year of building up assets and planning an expansion.

The business, called Manulife Asset Management Private Markets, manages $74-billion of its parent company’s $575-billion in funds under management. Management plans to grow that pool by seeking out new investors and deepening its focus on three target areas: commercial real estate equity, commercial mortgage lending and private placements.
Manulife  private_equity  institutional_investors  Bay_Street  commercial_real_estate  product_launches 
november 2013 by jerryking
Shopify leaping from Web to storefront as startups dream big - The Globe and Mail
Aug. 28 2013 | The Globe and Mail| SEAN SILCOFF.

The Ottawa-based company is launching a comprehensive system that allows retailers to run their entire operation, from cash register to inventory management to online storefront, from an iPad. Shopify attracted tens of thousands of retailers by offering a system that allows users to set up web-based store fronts in minutes...
“The distinction between online, mobile and bricks-and-mortar retailing shouldn’t exist,” Shopify chief platform officer Harley Finkelstein said of Shopify POS, which launches Wednesday.
Shopify  start_ups  retailers  e-commerce  bricks-and-mortar  m-commerce  product_launches 
october 2013 by jerryking
Meet Bloomberg's data-driven Daniel Doctoroff
Aug. 09 2013 | The Globe and Mail |JOANNA SLATER.

Mr. Doctoroff’s job, as deputy mayor for economic development, would include rebuilding the site and pushing ahead with projects envisaged in the Olympic bid....Founded by Mr. Bloomberg in 1982, the firm grew into a global juggernaut that disrupted every field it touched, from market data to financial journalism....Mr. Doctoroff had a yen for precision and a belief in the power of data. To eliminate clutter on his desk, he never touches a piece of paper twice. “I either delegate something, I dump it, or I deal with it,”...Mr. Doctoroff’s mission at Bloomberg is twofold. The first is to sell more terminals – a subscription service that costs more than $20,000 (U.S.) a year per person and offers access to an expanding universe of data, analytical tools and news. Last year was a tough one for terminal sales; Wall Street firms continued to shed staff in what Mr. Doctoroff describes as “the fourth year of post-financial crisis adjustment.”

The second task is to lead the company into other areas and make those investments pay off. Bloomberg has launched what it hopes will become indispensable data products for fields like law and government and also for back-office personnel within finance. Then there’s the media business, which includes a news service, television, radio and magazines, among them Bloomberg Businessweek, which was purchased in 2009. Businessweek still isn’t profitable, but it’s losing much less money than it used to. The magazine, like the rest of the news operation, serves another objective in the Bloomberg ecosystem, Mr. Doctoroff said: heightening the firm’s profile so it can attract more market-moving scoops, which in turn helps to sell more terminals....On his career path: I believe we’re all endowed with a very small set of narrow skills that make us unique. You’ve got to find what that is. Most often what you truly understand makes you unique is something that you’re also going to build passion around. For me – and I didn’t really discover this until I was in my 40s, the line that connected the dots … [is] seeing patterns in numbers that enable me to tell a compelling story which helps to solve a problem. So whether it is helping a candidate get elected or doing a road show for a company, getting a project done in New York or hopefully setting a vision for a company, it’s that narrow skill.
New_York_City  Bloomberg  data_driven  precision  CEOs  organizational_culture  Wall_Street  private_equity  digital_media  disruption  privately_held_companies  Michael_Bloomberg  fin-tech  journalism  pattern_recognition  career_paths  gtd  mayoral  Daniel_Doctoroff  storytelling  product_launches  sense-making  leadership  insights  leaders  statistics  persuasion  ratios  analogies  back-office  connecting_the_dots  scoops  financial_journalism  financial_data  special_sauce  non-routine  skills 
august 2013 by jerryking
Cirque, Sid Lee team up to create marketing ‘events’ - The Globe and Mail
Jun. 20 2013 | The Globe and Mail | SUSAN KRASHINSKY - MARKETING REPORTER.

Cirque du Soleil is bringing its sense for spectacle to the marketing world, teaming up with Montreal ad agency Sid Lee to launch a branded entertainment company. The joint venture will aim to help brands create experiences that people actually want to watch, listen to, and experience. The joint venture, Sid Lee Entertainment, has been a year and a half in the making, and is an attempt to address a fundamental shift in advertising: away from pushing messages to consumers, and toward creating engaging content....Marketers have been approaching Cirque for years to develop entertainment projects, Mr. Lamarre said, but the company was unable to figure out how to do that without having it conflict with its own brand.

The goal is to create events engaging enough that the brands behind them can sell tickets, Mr. Cesvet said – and to potentially create a new economic model for an industry in flux.

“With advertising, we’re still selling hours,” he said. “What we want to do with this entertainment division is transform the revenue stream of our business … what clients expect from agencies is a lot more complex. You have to do an app, you have to do interactive experiences. I don’t think the value is recognized.”
marketing  branding  brands  Cirque_du_Soleil  Montreal  advertising_agencies  partnerships  joint_ventures  events  event_marketing  ideaCity  product_launches  customer_experience  experiential_marketing  content_creators  live_performances  interactivity  inbound_marketing  entertainment  Sid_Lee  Susan_Krashinsky  creating_valuable_content  fascination 
june 2013 by jerryking
New takes on data spawn new businesses - FT.com
January 15, 2013 | FT | By Brian McKenna.

DataSift, based in San Francisco in the US and Reading in the UK. It aims to help organisations improve their understanding and use of social media.

Kabbage, is an online lender to small businesses;

Big data does not just mean a lot of information. It also refers to so-called unstructured data – sensor data, social media outpourings, video and images – that does not fit neatly into the rows and columns of most databases.....

“What if one of the large online marketplaces bought a credit company? What would they do with it? They’d give cash to the businesses that were generating their online revenue. That was the germ of Kabbage,” he says.

From application to cash in the bank for small, mostly online, companies takes seven minutes. Kabbage monitors its borrowers by linking to and watching their private data sources: bank accounts, Twitter feeds, eBay and Facebook accounts, among others. Interest rates are between 2-18 per cent. The company’s 90,000 accounts are mostly in the US, but it is planning a UK launch in February.
massive_data_sets  data  data_driven  new_businesses  Kabbage  unstructured_data  DataSift  online_banking  product_launches  social_data  alternative_lenders  alternative_lending 
april 2013 by jerryking
How to Scale Up Your Service Business
Mar 18, 2011 | | Inc.com | John Warrillow.

It can be tough to grow a service business. Clients generally are buying your expertise, and if all you have to sell is time, the size of your business will always be limited by the number of hours in the day. One way to scale up your service business is to launch a training division to teach others what you know...we all know, as business owners, we should document our systems for others to follow, but somehow writing our owner's manual always takes a backseat to serving the next customer or fighting the next fire.
howto  scaling  services  training  John_Warrillow  product_launches  growth  ideas  owners  documentation 
april 2013 by jerryking
The Science of Serendipity
Q3 · 2011 | Think Quarterly by Google | WORDS BY Dave Allan, Matt Kingdon. The co-founders of ?WhatIf!, the world’s largest independent innovation company, explain how.

The best innovation leaders are good at asking questions that help make an idea real: what does it weigh? Can I put it in my pocket? What will be the consumer’s experience? What will they stop buying when they switch to our product?

One client of ours wanted to cut the time and expense of launching a new restaurant. They had budgeted $3m and several months. We took $150,000 and in three days had a pop-up restaurant running. We made plenty of mistakes, but we made them fast and cheap and we learned things that saved our client time and money.
innovation  serendipity  pop-ups  buyer_choice_rejection  restaurants  customer_experience  product_development  cheap_revolution  product_launches  questions  Michael_McDerment 
april 2013 by jerryking
Divide and Conquer: Competing with Free Technology under Network Effects - Academic Article - Harvard Business School
Summer 2008 | HBR |by Deishin Lee and Haim Mendelson

Abstract

We study how a commercial firm competes with a free open source product. The market consists of two customer segments with different preferences and is characterized by positive network effects. The commercial firm makes product and pricing decisions to maximize its profit. The open source developers make product decisions to maximize the weighted sum of the segments' consumer surplus, in addition to their intrinsic motivation. The more importance open source developers attach to consumer surplus, the more effort they put into developing software features. Even if consumers do not end up adopting the open source product, it can act as a credible threat to the commercial firm, forcing the firm to lower its prices. If the open source developers' intrinsic motivation is high enough, they will develop software regardless of eventual market dynamics. If the open source product is available first, all participants are better off when the commercial and open source products are compatible. However, if the commercial firm can enter the market first, it can increase its profits and gain market share by being incompatible with its open source competitor, even if customers can later switch at zero cost. This first-mover advantage does not arise because users are locked in, but because the commercial firm deploys a divide and conquer strategy to attract early adopters and exploit late adopters. To capitalize on its first-mover advantage, the commercial firm must increase its development investment to improve its product features.
early_adopters  late_adopters  networks  network_effects  free  competitive_advantage  product_launches  open_source  competitive_strategy  customer_adoption  first_movers  locked_in 
january 2013 by jerryking
Marketers develop a taste for aspiring foodies
Dec. 27 2012 | The Globe and Mail | SUSAN KRASHINSKY - MARKETING REPORTER.

Loblaw's President’s Choice Black Label Collection targets a growing consumer population: foodies.

The Black Label products launched late last year, but in limited distribution at first in select parts of Ontario. With the nationwide rollout now complete, there has been a bigger push to advertise the products this holiday season.
marketing  grocery  Loblaws  private_labels  brands  branding  gourmands  gourmet  food  foodies  market_segmentation  product_launches  rollouts 
december 2012 by jerryking
Darwin and Demon: Innovating within Established Enterprises
July-August 2004 | HBR | Geoffrey A. Moore

Innovation comes in many forms--products, processes, marketing, business models, and more. Which kind should you be pursuing? It depends where are you in your product category's life cycle.
innovation  HBR  product_launches  taxonomy  life_cycle  market_windows  sales_cycle  Geoffrey_Moore  intrapreneurship  product_category  new_categories 
december 2012 by jerryking
Heiresses Get Down to Business - WSJ.com
September 21, 2007 | WSJ | Robert Frank

Heiresses Get Down to Business
Today's Young Rich Skip the Lunching, Launch Companies.

A new generation of heiresses is redefining what it means to be a socialite. Rather than trying to climb the social ladder through charity work and elaborate parties, today's rich and restless want to make their mark in the business world. They don't want to be ladies of leisure; they want to be ladies of commerce, more interested in creating their own brands than making the A-list.
Robert_Frank  entrepreneur  entrepreneurship  product_launches  high_net_worth  brands  personal_branding  impact_investing  social_impact  women 
august 2012 by jerryking
The Launching Pad - NYTimes.com
July 21, 2012 | NYT | By THOMAS L. FRIEDMAN.

Obama should aspire to make America the launching pad where everyone everywhere should want to come to launch their own moon shot, their own start-up, their own social movement. We can’t stimulate or tax-cut our way to growth. We have to invent our way there. The majority of new jobs every year are created by start-ups. The days when Ford or G.E. came to town with 10,000 jobs are over. Their factories are much more automated today, and their products are made in global supply chains. Instead, we need 2,000 people in every town each starting something that employs five people.

We need everyone starting something! Therefore, we should aspire to be the world’s best launching pad because our work force is so productive; our markets the freest and most trusted; our infrastructure and Internet bandwidth the most advanced; our openness to foreign talent second to none; our funding for basic research the most generous; our rule of law, patent protection and investment-friendly tax code the envy of the world; our education system unrivaled; our currency and interest rates the most stable; our environment the most pristine; our health care system the most efficient; and our energy supplies the most secure, clean and cost-effective.

No, we are not all those things today — but building America into this launching pad for more start-ups is precisely what an Obama second term should be about, so more Americans can thrive in a world we invented. If we can make America the best place to dream something, design something, start something, collaborate with others on something and manufacture something — in an age in which every link in that chain can now be done in so many more places — our workers and innovators will do just fine.
Tom_Friedman  Obama  Campaign_2012  start_ups  entrepreneurship  Cambrian_explosion  product_launches  rule_of_law  interest_rates  institutional_integrity  currencies  moonshots  tax_codes 
july 2012 by jerryking
New Rules for Bringing Innovations to Market
March 2004 | HBR | Bhaskar Chakravorti.

The more networked a market is, the harder it is for an innovation to take hold, writes Bhaskar Chakravorti, who leads Monitor Group's practice on strategies for growth and managing uncertainty through the application of game theory. Chakravorti argues that executives need to rethink the way they bring innovations to market, specifically by orchestrating behavior change across the market, so that a large number of players adopt their offerings and believe they are better off for having done so. He outlines a four-part framework for doing just that: The innovator must reason back from a target endgame, implementing only those strategies that maximize its chances of getting to its goal. It must complement power players, positioning its innovation as an enhancement to their products or services. The innovator must offer coordinated switching incentives to three core groups: the players that add to the innovation's benefits, the players that act as channels to adopters and the adopters themselves. And it must preserve flexibility in case its initial strategy fails.

Chakravorti uses Adobe's introduction of its Acrobat software as an example of an innovator that took into account other players in the network--and succeeded because of it. As more content became available in Acrobat format, more readers were motivated to download the program," he observes. "The flexibility in Acrobat's product structure and the segmentation in the market allowed the pricing elasticity that resulted in the software's widespread adoption."
HBR  innovation  networks  network_effects  rules_of_the_game  commercialization  monetization  product_launches  howto  growth  managing_uncertainty  cloud_computing  endgame  Adobe  uncertainty  switching_costs  jump-start  platforms  orchestration  ecosystems  big_bang  behaviours  behavioral_change  frameworks  sharing_economy  customer_adoption  thinking_backwards  new_categories  early_adopters  distribution_channels  work-back_schedules 
july 2012 by jerryking
Go Ahead, Take a Risk
June 22, 2004 | WSJ | By ADRIAN SLYWOTSKY

What are the risks you should be taking but aren't? Most managers treat risk as an unwanted byproduct of the business. They think narrowly of financial, operating, and hazard risks, such as currency fluctuations, employee fraud, and earthquakes. And they defend themselves through practices like hedging, internal controls, and insurance.

But disruptive strategic risks can be a much larger source of value destruction for a firm. I looked back to the bull market of the 1990s to analyze movements of the Fortune 1000 stocks; even then, before the market collapsed, 10% of stocks lost over one-quarter of their value in a single month, primarily because of strategic-risk events.

The most successful companies do not try to simply minimize strategic risk; they embrace such risk by making prudent bets in their growth-oriented strategies. Strategic risks include not just the obvious, high-probability events that a new ad campaign or new product launch will fail, but other less-obvious risks as well: Customers' priorities will change quickly -- as when baby-boomer parents quickly migrated from station wagons to minivans, catching most automakers off guard. New technology will overtake your product -- as mobile telephony has stolen market share from fixed-line voice. A one-of-a-kind competitor will render your business model obsolete -- as the Wal-Mart tidal wave has washed over mid-range department stores.

Although insurance and hedging can't address strategic risks, there are an array of countermeasures that can, including these three:
1) Smart sequencing for new growth initiatives. Look for incumbents that are moving deliberately, leveraging existing assets and customer relationships to gain the experience, knowledge, and reputation necessary to take the next step with confidence.
2) Proprietary information to reduce the risk of each new initiative. Gather and generate proprietary information that produces a depth of insight into the customer's needs and activities that traditional suppliers cannot match. This will make you a supplier of choice, reducing bidding volatility and allow you to plan with greater certainty.
3) Double betting to minimize the risk of obsolescence. When several versions of a new technology are competing to become the standard, it's impossible to predict which will prevail. So smart managers make double bets. Betting on both Windows and OS/2 positioned Microsoft to be the winner, regardless of which operating system prevailed.

Traditional risk management seeks to contain losses. But that's just one-half of the growth equation. By embracing strategic risk, Cardinal, JCI, and other risk-savvy companies have raised their growth potential in addition to reducing their economic volatility. That's important at a time when aggregate market growth is sluggish: The biggest risk of all is not to take the right growth risks for the business.
leaps_of_faith  Adrian_J._Slywotzky  risk-taking  proprietary  sequencing  scuttlebutt  information  growth  strategic_thinking  Mercer  Oliver_Wyman  product_launches  nonpublic  low_growth  slow_growth  insights  customer_insights  value_destruction  disruption  insurance  new_products  obsolescence  countermeasures  volatility  customer_risk  one-of-a-kind  hedging  overly_cautious  risk-aversion  de-risking  double_betting  risk-management  bull_markets  customer_relationships  dark_data  risk-savvy  internal_controls  financial_risk  risks 
june 2012 by jerryking
The Sales Learning Curve
July-August 2006 | HBR | Mark Leslie and Charles A. Holloway

Because new-product launches often take longer and cost more than expected, many promising offerings are prematurely aborted. Smart
companies give themselves time and money enough to climb the sales learning curve before ramping up the sales force.
HBR  sales  new_entrants  product_launches  learning_curves  new_products 
june 2012 by jerryking
Bubbling Up
January 2005 | Worth | Sergio Zyman.

We changed the formula we had been using for 100 years to give our customers what we thought they wanted: New Coke. We orchestrated a huge launch, received abundant media coverage and were delighted with ourselves until the sales figures rolled in. Within weeks. we realized that we had blundered. Sales tanked and the media turned against us. Seventy-seven days New Coke was born. We made the second-hardest decision in company history: We pulled the plug. What went wrong? The answer was embarrassingly simple: We did not know enough about our customers. We did not even know what motivated them to buy Coke in the first place. Based on that, we fell into the trap of imagining that innovation—abandoning our existing product for a new one would cure our ills. After the debacle, we reached out to consumers, and found that they wanted more than taste when they made purchase. Drinking Coke enabled them to tap into the Coca-Cola experience, to be part of Coke's history and to feel the continuity and stability of the brand. Instead of innovating. we should have renovated. Instead of making a product and hoping people would buy it, we should have asked customers what they wanted and given it to them. As soon as we started listening to them, consumers respondcd, increasing our sales 9 billion to 15 billion cases a year.
Coca-Cola  Pepsi  market_research  marketing  renovations  growth  CMOs  product_launches  kill_rates  brands  customer_expectations  customer_insights  culling  mistakes  beverages  innovation  contra-innovation 
may 2012 by jerryking
J.C. Penney to Overhaul Department-Store Concept - WSJ.com
JANUARY 26, 2012 |WSJ| By DANA MATTIOLI.

J.C. Penney Chief Thinks Different
With Apple in His Head, New CEO Tosses Out Old Pricing Models and Formats at Department Store

Department stores increasingly are setting up "stores in a store" and carving out areas for specific brands. Mr. Johnson, however, wants to set up as many as 100 of them—including branded spaces like a new Nanette Lepore shop and "Martha Stewart's Kitchen," private-label stores for the company's Liz Claiborne line, and themed areas for seasons and trends.

Penney's plans to launch 10 new shops in the fall and add new stores monthly until it reaches its goal by 2015. ...Two things Mr. Johnson isn't interested in are celebrity lines and private label apparel. Mr. Johnson, a believer in brands, says in-house labels lack distinctiveness and pricing power
department_stores  retailers  J.C._Penney  CEOs  first90days  Dana_Mattioli  Apple  product_launches  think_differently 
january 2012 by jerryking
CGI to launch defence and intelligence unit in Canada -
Sep. 29, 2011 | The Globe and Mail | The Canadian Press

CGI Group (GIB.A-T19.970.472.41%) is launching a Canadian defence, public safety and intelligence unit based on similar efforts in the United States.

Lieutenant-General Andrew Leslie, who retired earlier this month after a 30-year career with the Canadian Forces, will head the unit.

The unit is intended to serve Canada's defence and security needs around the world....With more than 7,500 specialists around the world, CGI will offer services such as advanced analytics, biometrics and cybersecurity, operational logistics, systems engineering and training.
Canada  Canadian  Canadian_Forces  CGI  militaries  product_launches  security_&_intelligence 
september 2011 by jerryking
Technology Devices Either Sell Big or Die Fast - NYTimes.com
August 23, 2011 | NYT | By JENNA WORTHAM & VERNE G.
KOPYTOFF. In recent years, technology companies have been cutting their
losses with increasing speed...These days, big technology companies —
particularly those in the hypercompetitive smartphone and tablet
industries — are starting to resemble Hollywood film studios. Every
release needs to be a blockbuster, and the only measure of success is
the opening-weekend gross. There is little to no room for the sleeper
indie hit that builds good word of mouth to become a solid performer
over time. ...this accelerated lifecycle of high-end hardware is being
described as “Darwinian.” ...Companies kill new products more quickly
now because of the higher cost of staying competitive, ..The crush of
tech bloggers and Twitter-using early adopters .. raises the stakes
around how well new products perform in the marketplace...One needs
everything in place: the content, the applications and the
experience--to have a reasonable chance at success.
attrition_rates  product_launches  speed  product_development  hits  blockbusters  winner-take-all  accelerated_lifecycles  social_media  kill_rates  new_products  Jenna_Wortham  Darwinian 
august 2011 by jerryking
The New Dirt on Dry Cleaners - WSJ.com
JULY 28, 2011 | WSJ | by RAY A. SMITH. A transition that is
already shaking up the dry-cleaning industry. Many dry cleaners will be
required to find new solvents to replace a widely used cleaning agent
called perchloroethylene, or perc, by 2020. As a result, businesses are
using a growing array of new methods to clean garments. Procter &
Gamble Co. recently launched Tide Dry Cleaners, a chain of stores that
use an alternative product, based on silicone and called
GreenEarth....The shakeup is coming to an industry that has changed
little for decades. ...Tide Dry Cleaners stores, which use the branding
of Tide laundry detergent, have valets that carry clothes to and from
customers' cars, lockers with customized passwords where consumers can
drop off or pick up clothes after hours, and bar codes that keep track
of customers' data, including preferences. The company made sure the
stores were bright and open, with the machines visible,
laundry_rooms  P&G  dry-cleaning_industry  product_launches 
july 2011 by jerryking
Upside: Is It Time to Look Beyond Apple? - WSJ.com
JUNE 11, 2011 By DAVE KANSAS. A battle is brewing covering
online commerce, cloud computing and devices. Apple's commerce business
is expanding quickly. Google's Android operating system is driving a
bunch of devices that compete with Apple. Amazon is weighing a branded
tablet. ....Amazon, Google and Apple already are competing hard in music
and other digital-media commerce. Both Google and Amazon beat Apple to
the consumer cloud business. Apple is expected to launch a business
cloud-computing offering that would compete with Google and Amazon in a
field Amazon pioneered with its Web Services unit.
Apple  competitive_landscape  Google  Amazon  iCloud  cloud_computing  Android  product_launches 
june 2011 by jerryking
Kraft calls on star chefs to capture immigrant market - The Globe and Mail
Apr. 12, 2011 |G&M | WENCY LEUNG. Major North American food
companies have been expanding their overseas mkts. for decades. But
targeting ethnic consumers on home turf is still relatively uncharted
territory. Industry analysts say that’s changing, as shifting
demographics in Canada force mainstream food companies to recognize new
growth opportunities among domestic minority groups. Last yr, Campbell
Canada launched a new line of halal-certified soups to cater to a
growing population of Muslim Canadians. This past February, the
country’s largest grocer, Loblaw, appointed a new president with
extensive knowledge of Asian markets. Following Loblaw’s 2009 purchase
of Asian supermarket chain T&T, the company’s appointment of Vicente
Trius as president underscores its intention to attract diverse
customers.As Loblaw exec. chair. Galen Weston said at the appointment,
Mr. Trius “has an understanding of Asian retail, South Asian retail and
what constitutes a great way to grab those customers.”
Kraft  ethnic_communities  immigrants  Loblaws  demographic_changes  uncharted_problems  food  retailers  product_launches  chefs 
april 2011 by jerryking
WPP's Ogilvy & Mather to Launch China-Focused Division in U.S. - WSJ.com
APRIL 11, 2011 | WSJ | By LAURIE BURKITT. The new venture
places the agency amid a growing roster of law firms, investment banks
and consultancies that are building their staffs and creating new
services to cater to the government's initiative to build up Chinese
businesses abroad.
WPP  China  New_York_City  public_relations  advertising_agencies  FDI  China_rising  Ogilvy_&_Mather  product_launches 
april 2011 by jerryking
Bottom lines are under pressure
Jun 14, 2004 / Plant. : Vol. 63, Iss. 7; pg. 46, 1 pgs /
Jayson Myers. Accelerated innovation also brings tremendous challenges.
It's shortening product life cycles and creating new and more demanding
customer expectations. More than 25,000 new consumer products were
launched in the North American market last year. Some manufacturers are
facing a market window of only a few months before the competition steps
in or customer requirements change. For example, the life cycle of
electronic components is about 18 months.
ProQuest  Canadian  manufacturers  innovation  margins  product_launches  market_windows  accelerated_lifecycles  customer_expectations 
november 2010 by jerryking
Up, up and away; Pop-ups
Nov 6, 2010 | The Economist | Independent galleries, theatres,
bars (not always licensed) & front-room restaurants, all with
intentionally short lifespans, have been popping up suddenly, often
overnight, in the hipper parts of British cities for several yrs. The
exigencies of the recession encouraged retailers to emulate them: the
previous govt. set up a £ 3m fund to fill empty shops; landlords became
willing to sign short-term leases. Last yr. the people behind an
ice-cream brand named The Icecreamists ran a pop-up shop, complete with
in-house band & catwalk shows, inside Selfridges in London.The
brand's slogan-- to "liberate the world one lick at a time"--wouldn't be
out of place at Banner repeater. Founder Matt O'Connor says his 1st
pop-up let him launch his brand for a 1/10th of the normal cost, while
testing product ideas. For established brands, the format provides a
direct way of interacting with customers, turning each day's trading
into a consumer focus group.
ProQuest  marketing  trends  United_Kingdom  branding  market_research  product_launches  focus  retailers  experimentation  pop-ups  ice_cream 
november 2010 by jerryking
Case Study: Sometimes the Market Tells You What It Needs
Jan 10, 2006 | WSJ | Paulette Thomas. .Patrick Martucci
leapfrogged to increasingly challenging jobs across the telecom
industry, setting up distn. channels, running sales depts. An
opportunity arose when he worked at a company that provided maintenance
on Rolm phone equip.. Martucci pitched J.C. Penney, which, after a
trial, offered the maintenance contract for the entire retail chain's
phone service. But his company handled only Rolm equip.in specific
geographies, not the full sprawl of a retailer with a mishmash of phone
sys. Martucci saw what could have been "a $10 M contract go to $1.5 M"
THE SOLUTION: From Chicago, he launched United Asset Coverage, which
would informally stitch together a network to fix anyone's office equip.
-- no matter the brand nor the place, a managed-care approach to the
frustrating world of office-machine maintenance. Martucci told a small
VC fund. "It's a $36 B marketplace & I'm familiar with it,". They
invested a total of "a couple million" $.
voicemail  entrepreneur  opportunistic  maintenance  product_launches  telecommunications  disorganization  retailers  J.C._Penney  managed-care  demand-driven  customer-driven  case_studies  nationwide 
october 2010 by jerryking
When Being First Doesn't Make You No. 1 - WSJ.com
AUG.12, 2004|WSJ|CRIS PRYSTAY.In Jan. 2000--almost 2 yrs.
before Apple.'s iPod hit the mkt.--Singapore-based Creative Tech.
unveiled a similar prod.: an MP3 player w. a tiny hard drive that stored
hundreds of hrs. of music. In biz., though, being 1st doesn't always
make you No. 1. Creative is best-known for its Sound Blaster audio cards
for PCs, a product category it pioneered & dominates. But it's
still a niche player; annual sales are a tenth of Apple's. Apple ran
mktg. rings around Creative even in its own backyard. For iPod's
Singapore launch in late 2001, Apple plastered the CBD with funky
posters & ran a hip ad blitz in movie theaters.Creative's response
finally came last month, when it began sponsoring a children's TV show
& running its 1st-ever TV ad campaign--but only in Singapore.
"There's been a big shift in our biz, & right now, our biggest
challenge is mktg.," concedes founder/CEO, Sim Wong Hoo. "But I'm
stingy. I don't want to waste $ unless I know it's going to work."
branding  Xerox  Ricoh  image_advertising  Apple  iPODs  competitive_landscape  product_launches  Singapore  first_movers  fast_followers  consumer_electronics  marketing  new_products  new_categories  category_killers 
october 2010 by jerryking
Venture Capitalist Invests Where Cellphones Meet Retail - WSJ.com
JULY 16, 2010 | Wall Street Journal | By SPENCER E. ANTE.
Founded in June 2009, Shopkick is building applications for the iPhone
and devices powered by Google Inc. software that will offer product
information or coupons when users check into a store with their
cellphones. The company plans to launch the application this summer and
has signed up a number of partners, including Best Buy Co., Macy's Inc.
and Procter & Gamb le Co. Sonny Jandial, brand manager with
P&G, said the company is trying to learn how to take advantage of
consumers' obsession with their cellphones.
mobile_applications  mens'_clothing  product_launches  retailers  Reid_Hoffman  Shopkick  vc  venture_capital 
july 2010 by jerryking
Bonobos: Very Fit to Lead -Thinking Big
May 18, 2010 | TIME | By Carlye Adler. "Bonobos is now
launching a plan to bring "mobile fit pods", or portable, collapsible,
dressing rooms to airports, train stations, corporations, college
tailgates, beach parties, and farmer's markets — wherever the potential
customers are — to get guys measured by its experts (so-called style
ninjas), who will then direct them to the website. Bonobos's web site
and pop up fitting rooms have entirely eradicated the brand's need for
leases, sales staff, and distribution. "The concept has such validity in
today's world," says Maxine Martens, the CEO of fashion industry search
firm Martens & Heads, and an investor in the company. In 2009, a
retail environment that saw shrinking sales, reduced traffic, store
closures, and bankruptcies, Bonobos tripled its business, earning $4.9
million in gross sales. And even though the pants aren't cheap,
($88-$195 a pair), Dunn says there's enough appeal to double business
this year. "
apparel  e-commerce  fashion  mens'_clothing  inspiration  reinvention  Bonobos  pop-ups  retailers  thinking_big  inventory-free  product_launches 
may 2010 by jerryking
EBay Adds 'Flash' Fashion - WSJ.com
MARCH 29, 2010 | Wall Street Journal | By GEOFFREY A. FOWLER
And RAY A. SMITH. EBay Adds 'Flash' Fashion
Business Model Takes a Page From Online Sample Sales. EBay Inc. will
launch "flash sales" of high-end fashion brands Monday in its latest bid
to revive its giant online marketplace. On a portion of its Web site
dubbed Fashion Vault, the company will offer discounts starting at 50%
off retail for a limited time, beginning with offerings from French
Connection Group PLC.
The business model, which follows a trial in the fall featuring Hugo
Boss, DKNY and Max Mara, takes a page from such Web sites as Gilt Groupe
Inc. and GSI Commerce Inc.'s Rue La La. Those sites have carved out a
fast-growing niche in e-commerce by offering the online equivalent of
one-off sample sales. The move is a departure for eBay, which has
generally billed itself as a neutral third-party marketplace that anyone
can join.
apparel  brands  EBay  e-commerce  fashion  flash_sales  high-end  high-growth  microsites  niches  one-of-a-kind  product_launches  Ray_Smith 
march 2010 by jerryking
The Luxury Touch
February 28, 2007 |Strategy + Business | by Robert Reppa and
Evan Hirsh. From the moment Toyota launched the marque in 1989, Lexus
has set extremely high standards for its dealer selection process. It
gave initial priority to existing Toyota dealerships, but even they were
subjected to a demanding application process that required extensive
customer satisfaction surveys and related data.

The application process included several face-to-face interviews between
the company and each prospective dealer. In the end, only 80 existing
Toyota dealers were chosen from a field of 1,500 applicants. “The
process was unbelievable,” recalls one of the winners, “and the absolute
prerequisite was high customer satisfaction.” Having turned down 95
percent of the Toyota dealers who wanted a Lexus franchise, the company
then turned to top dealers of competing luxury brands, subjecting them
to the same exhaustive process.
automotive_industry  retailers  dealerships  luxury  exclusivity  Lexus  selection_processes  product_launches 
february 2010 by jerryking
Moving On Up - WSJ.com
OCTOBER 25, 2004 | Wall Street Journal | By SCOTT KILMAN.
Agricultural firms are looking for a new growth model. They're hoping
it's vertical integration. From California pistachio farms and Iowa hog
farms to Florida orange groves, entrepreneurs are building businesses
that control all the processing steps between the farm gate and dinner
plate. By coordinating the processing, either through direct ownership
or contractual relationships, these firms are trying to put their own
stamp on commodities in order to create brands and new products.
agriculture  vertical_integration  farming  fresh_produce  commodities  data_driven  growth  branding  product_launches  brands  new_products 
february 2010 by jerryking
It's the Purpose Brand, Stupid - WSJ.com
NOVEMBER 29, 2005 | Wall Street Journal | by CLAYTON M.
CHRISTENSEN, SCOTT COOK and TADDY HALL. Carving up markets by product,
price point or customer type often causes marketers to deliver products
overloaded with unwanted features or designed to improve on a product or
appeal to a demographic profile -- but not necessarily real customers.
the marketer's fundamental task is not so much to understand the
customer as it is to understand what jobs customers need to do -- and
build products that serve those specific purposes.
Clayton_Christensen  disruption  product_innovation  product_launches  innovation  market_segmentation  Marriott  failure  Coca-Cola  customer_insights  feature_overload  purpose  contextual  hiring-a-product-to-do-a-specific-job  brand_purpose 
january 2010 by jerryking
Recession 101: Courses for a Crisis - WSJ.com
FEBRUARY 18, 2009 WSJ article by ALINA DIZIK. Article focuses
on how business schools are dreaming up a series of new offerings. Some
schools are changing the focus of programs by combining classic business
topics with rapidly developing research about the downturn. To that
end, business schools are creating new exec-ed courses in the space of
weeks or months.
executive_management  executive_education  business_schools  Colleges_&_Universities  MBAs  economic_downturn  nimbleness  speed  agility  windows_of_opportunity  accelerated_lifecycles  operational_tempo  new_products  product_launches 
february 2009 by jerryking
reportonbusiness.com: Set yourself apart from the pack
February 18, 2009, Special to The Globe and Mail, CHARLES
MANDEL. The article profiles Toronto-based entrepreneur Andy Wilkin, who
opens a coffee roasting company that will supply beans to restaurants
and cafes. The goal: bringing premium coffee to his customers. Mr.
Wilkin's strategic differences originate in large part from Tedde van
Gelderen, the president of Toronto-based Akendi, which helps launch
businesses and fine-tunes their products and services.

Akendi assisted Mr. Wilkin with his brand identity, logo, signage and
website, and also helped the coffee roaster understand what he would
need to do to differentiate his business.
entrepreneurship  entrepreneur  coffee  high-end  Akendi  start_ups  product_launches  branding  differentiation  brand_identity 
february 2009 by jerryking
The Manager as Double Agent - WSJ.com
June 3, 2008 WSJ article by Matthew Gurewitsch which looks at a
record labels' launch of a talent management agency representing
recording artists some of whom were not the label's clients.
branding  music_labels  talent  product_launches  management  artists  music_industry  talent_management  talent_representation 
january 2009 by jerryking
Build your brand - but don't forget to deliver an experience
FEBRUARY 11, 2008 | THE GLOBE AND MAIL | GEORGE STALK.

Brand relationships are not confined to consumer products. They exist with hospitals, taxi companies, cleaners, garages, airlines, restaurants, and more. The strength of a brand experience is inextricably linked to every aspect of buying and using a product, not just to the inherent performance of the product itself.

Before launching that next advertising campaign or promotion, ask yourself how your investment decisions affect the customer experience, and if everyone - from senior executives to counter clerks - is aware of how much the brand's value hinges on the quality of experience you deliver.

Here are some questions to consider.

Can you describe the end-to-end experience, through "learn-buy-get-use-pay-service," that different customer segments experience?

Could you present it in a video for employees?

Do you have specific measures that track your ability to overcome the dissatisfactions (such as long waits for delivery and repairs, inaccuracies in orders and billings) customers encounter as they progress through your brand's experience?

Can you map the ripple effects of problems from misleading marketing claims to consumer distemper to service calls and product returns? Can you measure the economic implication of fixing these problems?

What is the dollar value of delivering an experience that consistently produces brand boosters and eliminates brand blasters?

Brand management is at a turning point. As the cacophony of the marketplace escalates, only those brands that deliver will succeed. Increased advertising investment alone won't move the sales needle: refocus your brand management on the outcomes that matter most - those that affect the lives of your customers.
branding  George_Stalk_Jr.  customer_experience  turning_points  moments_of_truth  product_launches  product_returns  BCG  ripple_effects 
january 2009 by jerryking
STRATEGY PERKONOMICS: The customer's always right ... and looking for a perk
Nov. 24, 2008 G&M column by Harvey Schachter looking at customer care plus assorted tips on branding.

some companies are gaining an edge through what it calls "Perkonomics" - adding perks and privileges to the regular offering in order to gain loyalty by satisfying consumers' desire for novel forms of status and/or convenience.

Perkonomics applies across all industries, and even to luxury brands that can search for additional status perks to offer customers. In most cases, the perks are free but in some instances the customer pays for the privilege.

Examples.

Exclusive Perks: American Express cardholders had exclusive access to purchase the winning dress designed on the episode of Project Runway of Sept. 3 - non-Amex customers could not purchase it.

No Queue Perks: Skipping a lineup can be a big time saver and, hence, a major perk. Avis Preferred membership enables car rental customers to skip lines and paperwork and go straight to their car, at more than 1,400 locations worldwide.

Concierge Perks: Amsterdam-based private bank Insinger de Beaufort launched a service aimed at saving its top clients the time and hassle of dealing with the minutiae of their personal finances. The clients are sent a big shoebox by courier every month into which they drop bills to be paid, receipts, tax returns, speeding tickets, insurance documents and the like, which the bank then handles for them.

Assorted Perks: South African health insurance company Discovery has a wellness program called Vitality that offers rewards for a healthy lifestyle based on scientific measurement. Members receive points by decreasing their risk factors for illness, and the higher the points, the greater the access to shopping and travel discounts. Nokia in the Philippines has installed battery-charging stations for phones throughout the Manila subway system, which Nokia owners can use at no cost.

Parking Perks: IKEA stores in Canada feature two Green Parking spaces close to the store reserved for drivers of hybrid cars and fuel-efficient vehicles.
Harvey_Schachter  customer_care  tips  branding  innovation  perks  product_launches  Amex  queuing  parking  customer_loyalty  loyalty_management  exclusivity  concierge_services  quantified_self  IKEA  Green_P  risk_factors 
january 2009 by jerryking

Copy this bookmark:





to read