Toyota’s Recall Problems Illustrate Risks of Brand Erosion

Toyota’s Recall Problems Illustrate Risks of Brand Erosion

Toyota’s recalls in recent weeks have attracted a predictable amount of attention given the number of impacted vehicles on the road. Rarely a day goes by when Toyota’s latest woes are not reported on the front page of The Wall Street Journal and on television news reports. For a company that has built its reputation on safety and dependability, the recalls are particularly damaging. Read this article for more details.

Kraft’s Hostile Bid for Cadbury Highlights Power of Economic Moats

Kraft’s Hostile Bid for Cadbury Highlights Power of Economic Moats

The drama associated with Kraft’s hostile takeover bid for Cadbury has been widely reported in recent weeks. With Kraft’s decision earlier this week to make a formal bid that did not sweeten the terms of the original offer, it appears that we are in for several months of high stakes wrangling before Cadbury shareholders make a final decision. Read this article for thoughts on what the deal implies for the value of Cadbury’s economic moat.

Will Consumer Brands Survive the “Great Recession”?

Very few Americans have experienced an economic downturn as severe as the current recession. Although it is very possible that GDP will show a positive reading for the third quarter, hardly anyone expects the employment situation to improve significantly until 2011. It is very possible that unemployment will soon exceed the worst levels of the 1981-82 recession. In most economic downturns, consumers attempt to substitutecheaper private label “store brands” for brand name goods . The key question is whether the current “great recession” will produce more lasting effects in consumer behavior. Read this article for more details.

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