Thursday, January 14, 2010
Recession has hit hard on both brands and consumers. Consumers started to re-think their value patterns, while brands across the world have found themselves facing the shakespearean "filter": To be or not to be...
Since this test has spread on a worldwide wave, would be interesting to see its effect in major world economies: USA, UK, EU Countries, China, Russia and Japan.
Starting with USA - the recession springhead:
8 Brands we loved and lost in 2009, as seen by CNN:
1. Circuit City (One of major US Retailers):
The 60-year-old US Electronic chain declared its bankrupcy already by the end of 2008. Among major reasons for its fall experts consider: poor management and stuff reductions in favour of cheaper but less knowledgeable work force. Now the brand experiences its "2nd life" - online. Honestly, the entire scenario reminds me of the UK retailer - Woolworth (over 100-year-old retailer, now trying to lodge in cyberspace).
2. Saturn (GM's alternative to smaller, imported cars):
Its law sales rates determined 2010 - the last production year for the 20-year-old brand.
3. Pontiac (GM's owned brand):
GM's close brankrupcy forced the company to concentrate on its "core" brands, so that regretably the 84-year-old brand (as of 1926) hasn't made its way into this list.
4. Saab (GM's Swedesh car brand):
Although GM had announced previously that it was close to reaching a deal with Swedish super-carmaker Koenigsegg, Saab eventually lost its last chance (December, 2009). Saab has been making cars since 1946. At the moment GM is considering selling Saab 9-3 and 9-5 technologies to the Chinese automaker Beijing Automotive Industry Holdings Co. Ltd. Overall, the brand ceasure will leave unemployed over 3400 workers.
Hit severely by the emerging digital technologies, which basically pulled it out of the consumption market.
6. Max Factor:
P&G announced their pulling out the brand from the US market, based on low popularity indez among its US consumers and corresponding sales figures. I hope this won't spread across the EU countries, I continue to be one of its fans..
7. Gourmet Magazine (60-year-old brand):
One of the most regretable publications faded in 2009. It continues though to appear on: TV, book publications and online recipes sites.
8. Microsoft's Encarta:
Why pay for a content you may easily now get for free on Wikipedia? Undoubtedly, the emerging Web 2.0 phenomena will continue to impact brands and force them either to adapt to the new environment or...pass away.
Which other "fading" brands you regret leaving the US market? Fit in and share your news.
Next markets to follow: EU, Russia and China - looking for your comments and suggestions.
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