Not long ago, Rob Wood found himself at Heston Blumenthal’s house, in south-west London, where he was being persuaded to eat a flower. They were supposed to have been discussing the TV chef’s latest project, testing music’s effects on the dining experience, for which he had hired Wood to pick the songs. Instead, he was recounting a recent trip to south-east Asia. The flowers on his kitchen table, he said, were from that same trip: he was trying to capture their flavour for a dish he was developing. Wood smelled the flowers. Blumenthal, increasingly animated, urged him to take a bite; he wanted the music to capture and complement the flower’s exotic qualities. Under duress, Wood had a little nibble. Wood is the founder and creative director of Music Concierge, a company that chooses background music for businesses. His clients include iconic fashion brands, such as Harvey Nichols and Mulberry, and luxury London hotels, such as the Connaught and the Savoy. Some … [Read more...] about Inside the booming business of background music
The Nike ad starring Colin Kaepernick does not appear to have adversely affected sales, an analyst said on Saturday. According to Edison Trends, a digital commerce research company: “Nike sales grew 31% from Sunday through Tuesday over Labor Day this year, besting 2017’s comparative 17% increase.” The sportswear giant released the first version of its ad on Monday, the Labor Day holiday. It featured the quarterback and the slogan: “Believe in something. Even if it means sacrificing everything. Just do it.” Kaepernick, 30, has been without a team since opting out of his San Francisco 49ers contract in March 2017. In 2016 he was an originator of protests by NFL players, targeting racial injustice and police brutality, which often involve kneeling during the pre-game playing of the national anthem. Donald Trump has made the protests a key part of his appeal to his base, arguing that the players are disrespecting the anthem, the US flag and the military. On … [Read more...] about Nike sales surge 31% in days after Colin Kaepernick ad unveiled, analyst says
Joules, the fashion retail brand, has reported a surge in revenue in the run-up to the festive season, crediting a "disciplined approach" to discounting.In a trading update the company, which has 124 stores in the UK and Ireland and 33 concessions, said it had delivered a robust performance with total revenue growth of 1.3% over the 26 weeks to 24 November.Its figures - adjusted to take account of the later Black Friday this year - showed a 3.1% leap in retail sales.This was driven, the company said, by e-commerce growth rather than sales at physical stores.Sales in its wholesale operation were 3.8% lower though international sales surged by 17%. Advertisement "Following a challenging September, as experienced across the sector, we have seen positive trading momentum across Joules' own e-commerce and store channels over the last two months, with revenue up by over 9%."On the back of this positive performance the group is opening four new stores before Christmas, in desirable … [Read more...] about Joules revenue rise aided by ‘disciplined’ approach to discounting
The wreckage of a World War I German armoured battlecruiser has been discovered off the coast of the Falkland Islands. The SMS Scharnhorst, the flagship of Admiral Maximilian Graf von Spee's East Asia Squadron, was sunk on 8 December 1914 during the Battle of the Falkland Islands, a crucial naval battle in the early days of the First World War. The discovery is a major breakthrough in the quest to locate all of the German squadron's ships lost during the battle. The bow of the SMS Scharnhost wreck is pictured flanked by two gun turrets at the time of its discovery off the coast of the Falkland Islands. The armoured cruiser was the flagship of Admiral Maximilian Graf von Spee's East Asia Squadron Naval turrets are pictured on the deck of the sunken SMS Scharnhorst in the waters around the Falkland Islands. The head of the search team said the impact crater that likely took the Scharnhorst down was visible during the operation An undated file photo shows … [Read more...] about Wreckage of German WWI battlecruiser is discovered off the Falkland Islands 105 years after it was sunk by the British in crucial battle
Reviving American manufacturing and bringing back factory jobs has been a central element of Donald Trump's political identity since he announced his candidacy for the US presidency in 2016. Trump had sharply criticized past administrations for allowing American companies to move production to places like China and Mexico and vowed to bring it back to the US. Even though Trump presented himself as a champion for industrial revival, experts say his record on this front has been poor. "There has not been any revival of manufacturing employment in the US," David Dollar, a senior fellow and leading expert on US-China economic relations at the Brookings Institution, told DW. "Manufacturing accounted for 8.1% of civilian employment when Trump was inaugurated, and it is 8.1% today," he said. Data released by the Institute for Supply Management (ISM) this week showed that manufacturing activity in the US contracted for a fourth straight month in November 2019, … [Read more...] about Has Trump fulfilled his promise to revive US manufacturing?