Actress Scarlett Johansson is the latest to launch her own beauty line. “Little is known about the brand so far other than it’ll be by ScarJo, it’ll be rooted in self-care, it’ll be here in early 2022, and it’ll be ‘a clean, accessible approach to beauty,’ as Johansson put it, which can kind of mean anything these days, considering everyone has a different definition of ‘clean’ (and ‘accessible’ and ‘beauty’ and also 'self-care,' come to think of it,)" according to The Cut.
Yum Brands and 7-Eleven franchisee Ampex Brands have acquired bakery and cafe chain Au Bon Pain from JAB Holding-owned Panera Bread in a deal which includes about $60 million in assets. Ampex Brands already owns and operates more than 400 locations of Pizza Hut, KFC, Taco Bell, Long John Silver’s and 7-Eleven locations. Ampex declined to disclose the Au Bon Pain deal’s value, but said it included assets and franchise rights for 131 additional locations.
Toyota’s decision to continue donating to lawmakers associated with the insurrection is angering some longtime customers. Several have posted about their displeasure on social media, including their vow to no longer buy Toyota vehicles. Jennifer Taub tweets: “Hey @Toyota! My family owns two Priuses (or Prii). One is ten years old and ready for a replacement. We won’t purchase another Toyota again. Have a nice day.” The Tweet has received thousands of “likes," “retweets” and comments in agreement.
Shoemaker Allbirds has tapped banks including Morgan Stanley for its initial public offering, people with knowledge of the matter tell Bloomberg. “The direct-to-consumer shoe brand has confidentially submitted its listing documents to the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission and is seeking to go public as soon as September,” according to the report, which claims the company is also working with JPMorgan Chase and Bank of America. The company is seeking to be valued at $2 billion or more in the listing.
Laura Jones has joined Instacart as vice president of brand and marketing. Jones will lead the central brand and marketing functions, charged with “shaping and defining a cohesive brand” across all aspects of the business, according to Instacart. Jones was at Uber for six years, where her titles included global head of product marketing, group product marketing manager and senior product marketing manager.
Major League Baseball is partnering with FTX Trading Limited and West Realm Shires Services, naming FTX as the “official cryptocurrency exchange brand of MLB.” FTX said this is the first partnership between a pro sports league and a cryptocurrency exchange. The deal includes FTX.US becoming MLB's first umpire uniform patch partner. Beginning with the MLB All-Star Game, presented by MasterCard (July 13, Fox), a FTX.US logo patch will appear on all umpire uniforms for regular season, post-season, spring training and Jewel Event games.
Chipotle has revamped its loyalty program to include a limited-edition racing game where customers could win a Tesla. The Rewards Exchange includes more customizable options. Customers can choose to cash in their points for 15 different reward options. “Chipotle is introducing gamification to the rewards program for a limited time, in partnership with Tesla,” per Nations’s Restaurant News. “Chipotle Race to Rewards Exchange is a retro-style racing game that will be available on both mobile and desktop devices for 48 hours."
Gap’s efforts for Pride month this year have angered some veteran activists. A plain white T-shirt includes a bomb encircled by the words ‘The Lesbian Avengers,” the logo of an unsung radical activist group that had its heyday almost three decades ago. “Seeing its insignia at a mass-market retail chain left people familiar with the group confused and divided over whether the T-shirt was more evidence of the corporate commodification of L.G.B.T.Q. allyship or a sign of growing recognition of a marginalized community,” per The New York Times.
Swedish home goods icon Ikea is getting negative feedback after one of its stores in Atlanta made a Juneteenth goof: It reportedly sent an email to employees alerting them that "to honor the perseverance of Black Americans and acknowledge the progress yet to be made," it was also going to roll out a special menu featuring watermelon and fried chicken.
Michigan Economic Development Corp.’s Travel Michigan is planning promotions for the Great Lakes state, where tourism is the third-largest industry after autos and agriculture. The department had its marketing budget slashed before the pandemic and then lost all of its funds, which were taken for the COVID-19 battle. Media partners and others donated and supported a community engagement effort to send the message that Michigan would get through the crisis together.