Zuckerberg’s FB manifesto
Mark Zuckerberg, CEO and co-founder of Facebook, recently highlighted the agenda for the social networking site through a 6,000-word letter. The letter touches on various topics ranging from the US politics, value of journalism, world affairs, etc. It not only states where its business is headed, but also goes on to say the type of world FB can help create. Zuckerberg wrote, “Our greatest opportunities are now global — like spreading prosperity and freedom, promoting peace and understanding, lifting people out of poverty, and accelerating science.
Our greatest challenges also need global responses — like ending terrorism, fighting climate change, and preventing pandemics. Progress now requires humanity coming together not just as cities or nations, but also as a global community.” He further mentioned that Facebook’s focus will be on developing the social infrastructure for community — “for supporting us, for keeping us safe, for informing us, for civic engagement, and for inclusion of all.”
He said that one of FB’s greatest opportunity lies in artificial intelligence. He also touched upon the two most discussed concerns — filter bubbles and fake news, which got negative press for Brexit and the US elections.
“Our approach will focus less on banning misinformation and more on surfacing additional perspectives and information, including that fact checkers dispute an item’s accuracy.”
Apparently, FB has taken its commitment to accuracy seriously. With issues related to its campaign performance, it has agreed to an audit by the Media Rating Council to boost confidence among its advertisers.
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Pokémon goes after brands
The highest grossing game in the US on iPhone and with over 500 million users worldwide, Pokémon Go is actively hunting for brand associations as well. The primary source of revenue for the mobile augmented reality (AR) game has been in-app purchases but the next step evidently would be through real world advertisers. Nintendo, which owns the Pokémon brand, is eyeing ads as the next source of revenue. Recently, coffee chain Starbucks confirmed its partnership with Pokémon Go across approximately 7,800 Starbucks outlets in the US. The coffee shops will be turned into Pokéstops and gyms. In each of the selected stores, a Pokémon-themed frappuccino has also been unveiled.
Pokémon Go had previously partnered with global burger chain McDonald’s and mobile provider Sprint. For retailers and businesses dependent on footfalls, the game is emerging as a saviour. Advertisers or brands, which usually feature as Pokéstops and gyms, usually pay the game developer on a cost per visit basis.
The developer had previously tried this model with another game called Ingress which also featured sponsored content from various US brands.According to various financial reports, Pokémon Go has pushed Nintendo’s market cap to over $42 billion.
‘Hello Moto’ to make a comeback
With an aim to make a comeback with its previous tagline Hello Moto, Motorola Mobility has signed on Total Media to handle its business across Europe, the Middle East and Africa. Total Media, which calls itself the behavioural planning agency, won the account for Motorola in January, 2014. The UK-based independent media agency will handle strategy, planning and buying across offline and online media channels for the handset manufacturer. But the initial push will be on Moto Z and Moto Mods, which were unveiled last year. The agency has been studying the online behaviour of prospective customers to filter back the insights to its media usage. Even though it will be working with the previous tagline, the agency will be responsible for bringing in a fresh approach to it.Lenovo and Google entered into an agreement in 2014 under which Lenovo acquired the Motorola Mobility smartphone business
No ‘Kraft’ing the Unilever deal
US-based worldwide food company, Kraft Heinz, had to back out from signing the $143 billion merger deal with Unilever barely 48 hours after it was made public.On February 19, 2017, it was announced that Kraft Heinz has amicably agreed to withdraw its proposal for a combination of the two companies. “Unilever and Kraft Heinz hold each other in high regard. Kraft Heinz has the utmost respect for the culture, strategy and leadership of Unilever,” informed the statement.
The European consumer goods company is said to have rejected the deal on the basis of undervaluation. Kraft Heinz had announced a bid of $50 per share.
Unilever’s share that rose to 13% on the expectation of a possible merger, fell to 7% in London post the announcement of no takeover. Reports also suggest that the fallout was also a result of the UK’s Prime Minister Theresa May’s indication that she would be more proactive in vetting foreign takeovers citing concerns about potential effect on jobs.
The deal would have marked Brazilian private equity firm 3G Capital Management Inc’s next step in buying food companies and its relentless cost cutting to make profits. In 2013, 3G had joined hands with investor Warren Buffett to acquire Heinz. Two years later, it went ahead to buy Kraft.
3G’s strategy could have eroded value of Unilever’s products and affected its expansion in various emerging markets. The breakdown has sparked speculation among analysts and investors about Kraft wanting to purchase another consumer goods company.
— Compiled by Ananya Saha