Unilever ups stakes against P&G and L’Oreal with $3.7bn Alberto Culver deal

Unilever has announced its intention to go all out for leadership in the booming personal care sector with a $3.7bn bid for Alberto VO5 and TRESemme maker Alberto Culver. The high cash bid, Alberto Culver’s revenues are only $1.6bn, signals ...

Read More »

Will the Chinese offer a Bright Foods future for United Biscuits?

Chinese food giant Bright Foods, which owns shops as well as factories and is backed in part by the Shanghai authorities, is in exclusive talks to buy the UK’s United Biscuits for a hefty £2.5bn. It’s open season on British ...

Read More »

Price-cutter Waitrose tweaks Tesco by the tail

Grocer to the UK middle classes Waitrose, owned by the John Lewis Partnership, says it’s going to match market leader Tesco’s prices on 1,000 branded goods. On the face of it this looks like an extension of its highly-successful lower-priced ...

Read More »

Is ITV being too greedy by cramming ads into top series Downton Abbey?

Downton Abbey is one of those ‘prestige’ costume drama series beloved of the BBC and ITV programme boss Peter Fincham (formerly controller of BBC1) must have been very pleased to line up Gosford Park writer Julian Fellowes to write and ...

Read More »

Mystery as WPP’s Sorrell pledges £55m shares to cover HSBC bank loans

It’s not unusual for rich executives to pledge shares in their companies to cover loans as they decide the shares are worth keeping or they need them for other purposes, like keeping control. Today it emerged that WPP CEO Sir ...

Read More »

Five things you didn’t know about advertising agencies: 1970s (1)

1/The 1970s were arguably advertising’s fun decade: the 1960s had uncorked the so-called creative revolution in New York and London and agencies were happy to earn eye-watering fees without the distraction of trying to build their companies on the stock ...

Read More »

Facebook’s Mark Zuckerberg races up the Forbes US rich list

At the grand old age of 26 Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg, far from the most popular person in media even before his great wealth became apparent, is personally worth $6.9bn, based on a theoretical valuation of social network site Facebook ...

Read More »

Is this Soft Paris opus the sexiest commercial ever?

Well some people think it is and the ad, for French online lotions and toys outfit Soft Paris from the aptly-named Lupo Productions, certainly lives up to its title of ‘sexy fruits.’ Soft Paris is a women-only store apparently, these ...

Read More »