Wendy's this year will launch the Pretzel Bacon Cheeseburger. It has been testing the pretzel bun burger, per Janney Montgomery Scott Analyst Mark Kalinowski. He has given the chain a "buy" rating because of it. Kalinowski says people with whom he has spoken say the Pretzel Bacon Cheeseburger performed as well during in-store market testing as "any Wendy's test items from the last 20 years."
The company that all but killed the diesel engine is now hoping to bring it back. For the first time since 1986, General Motors began selling a diesel-powered passenger car this week, and company officials say that a successful launch of the 2014 Chevrolet Cruze Turbo Diesel could convince them to add additional "oil burners" to the line-up.
A lot of people comment on Twitter while watching television. On Thursday, executives from Twitter discussed how they planned to allow advertisers to send ads to people who are watching specific programming. The new product will help brands match advertisements with Twitter commentary by viewers. Brands can then send messages to selected Twitter users who have already seen their ad on television. Then there's Twitter Amplify, where the channel will work with media companies to sell advertisers content.
Yahoo has Tumblr, but will advertisers? That's Yahoo's plan. The platform offers limited targeting opportunities and paid media on Tumblr is nil. And, per Rob Leathern, CEO of Optimal, a social media marketing management company, brands aren't interested even in the free ad options on the social site.
McDonald's is moving in a different direction in Japan than in the U.S. The company has just released its highest calorie item ever in Japan: the Mega Potato. The Mega Potato is almost a pound of fries, and contains 1,142 calories. The Mega Potato will hit Japanese restaurants nationwide this week, according to the site. The Mega Potato costs 490 yen. McDonald's latest exercise in caloric excess in Japan is in stark contrast to what it's attempting in the U.S.
Rolls-Royce, the luxury car brand owned by BMW, is reviewing its global advertising business, currently held by Partners Andrews Aldridge. The account covers digital work such as online films and direct marketing. It is being reviewed through AAR in a procurement-led process. RFP's were sent out last week and Partners Andrews Aldridge, which has worked with the automaker since 2008, focusing primarily on CRM, trade events and direct marketing. It fended off competition from Publicis Chemistry to retain the business in 2011.
American retailers are opposed to joining an international plan to improve safety conditions at garment factories in Bangladesh as their European counterparts and consumer and labor groups dismiss the companies' concerns about legal liability. Said Gap's chief executive, Glenn Murphy, responded. "If we were to sign onto something that had unlimited legal liability and risk, I think our shareholders should care about that."
Michelle Gass, who had long been considered a possible replacement for Starbucks' CEO Howard Schultz, and who spent the past two years working on a turnaround for Starbucks' troubled Europe, Middle East and Africa region is going to Menomonee Falls, Wis.-based Kohl's. The retailer Wednesday said it has hired Gass in the newly created position of chief customer officer. She will oversee marketing, e-commerce and something Kohl's calls "the customer's total omnichannel experience."
7-Eleven Inc. is launching #AWESUMMER Slurpee Days. From May 24 through May 27, medium Slurpees will be available for 49 cents. Actress Ashley Benson launched the program at a Los Angeles 7-Eleven with a "ceremonial first sip." The "Pretty Little Liars" and "Spring Breakers" star set her cup on a Slurpee machine that set off a chain reaction that resulted in the raising of a banner launching the promotion.
Ford Motor Company plans to roll-out 200,000 additional vehicles this year to meet customer demand in the U.S. The Dearborn, Mich.-based company said it expects to get the added volume in part by cutting back its two-week summer shutdown at select plants. That alone should add another 40,000 units of volume, Ford said. Ford is also shuttering its build operations in Australia.