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August 24, 2015

Q&A: The Impact of the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership Deal on USA and EU Business Environments

Carrie LennardAnalyst Insight by Carrie Lennard - Business Environment Manager

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The Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP) is a trade deal currently under negotiation between the EU and the USA, which could create the world’s biggest free trade zone, boosting trade between the two. It would do so by removing trade barriers between them and harmonising regulations. Exports from the USA to the EU-28 countries declined from 21.0% of total US exports in 2009 to 17.1% by 2014.

  • What existing free trade agreements do the EU and the USA have in place?
  • Why do the USA and the EU want to form the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP)?

  • What issues would the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP) need to address?

  • What positive impact could the deal have on economies in the EU-28 and the USA?

  • What are the likely drawbacks of the TTIP for the US and EU business environments?

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Seeking Opportunity in Latin America



View Sarah Boumphrey's profile on LinkedIn

Latin American GDP is expected to slump to 0.7% in 2015, following on from a dismal 2014. Some of the region’s largest economies are struggling the most – with Brazil, Argentina and Venezuela mired in slowdowns and recession. Overall, 23 of the 40 Latin American countries for which we have data, will see a decline in growth in 2015 over 2014. Yet beneath these topline figures business opportunities remain – with those with a thorough understanding of the region’s economies and nuances of their business environments at an advantage.

Real GDP Growth in Selected Latin American Economies: 2009-2015


Source: Euromonitor International from national statistics/OECD/UN/IMF

Note: Data for 2015 are forecast

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August 23, 2015

A Game of Whiskies: Top 5 Brands in Value Sales

Spiros MalandrakisAnalyst Insight by Spiros Malandrakis - Senior Alcoholic Drinks Analyst

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It has been a tumultuous couple of years for the whiskey category in all its guises, price points, age (and non-age) statements and controversial –albeit largely successful – attempts to expand its core demographics. While the overall narrative could be summarised as a dark spirits tide raising all sub-segments’ boats, it has been Bourbon’s and Irish varietals’ explosive momentum that has been the most widely covered, dissected and analysed. Almost as much, in fact, as Scotch whiskey’s relative demise under the weight of its strategic overreliance on the faltering emerging market mantra.

But beyond top line category dynamics, interlinked or viciously competing segments and the on-going debate on the merits –and limits- of innovation, which are the brands whose long shadow towers over the entire whiskey category?

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August 21, 2015

Uber – Court Cases, Bans and Automobiles

Caroline BremnerAnalyst Insight by Caroline Bremner - Head of Travel Research

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Uber continues its global march, now available in 250 cities across 55 countries as of the end of February 2015. It is bullish in its expansion approach, releasing its app to consumers and dealing with local regulators after its consumer awareness campaign to promote downloads. Many view this business style as combative and the company courts controversy, facing bans, lawsuits, challenges and protests across the world from Seoul to San Francisco to Madrid.

Making money start-up style

Controversy has not dissuaded investors, who, following the company’s latest round of funding, valued the company at US$41.5 billion, not bad for a company that was set up five years ago. With its country penetration at 25%, and more than 150 more countries that it could potentially enter, investors clearly see a promising future for the taxi and ride-share app that matches drivers with riders at the lowest possible price.

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Dishwashers Headed in the Opposite Direction to Major Appliances in Brazil

Alexis FrickAnalyst Insight by Alexis Frick - Research Analyst

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Brazil is the largest major appliances market in Latin America, accounting for more than half of the region’s total volume sales in 2014 due to its large population and westernised consumer base. In the last couple of years, the country has been witnessing a poor performance in major appliances, with volume retail sales growth dropping from 16% in 2012 to less than 2% in 2013. This contributed to Latin America registering the world’s weakest regional increase in volume sales of Headed in the opposite direction to this trend, however, is Brazil’s dishwasher sales – with Brazil set to be the fastest-growing dishwasher market worldwide over the next five years. Lessening of historic drags on the category as well as changing lifestyles and corporate strategy led to growth in 2014 and an optimistic forecast for dishwashers in Brazil.

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August 20, 2015

Continued Growth of Colour Cosmetics to Benefit Albéa

Mylan NguyenAnalyst Insight by Mylan Nguyen - Packaging Analyst

Albéa, the leading global manufacturer of rigid plastic packaging in beauty, specialises in speciality cosmetics containers, strongly benefiting from the dynamic colour cosmetics category. Still, to sustain future growth, innovation should remain a key focus for the company, both in more mature developed markets as well as in emerging markets such as China, India and Indonesia, where consumers enjoying higher disposable incomes increasingly expect more sophisticated colour cosmetics products and pack types.

Speciality Cosmetics Containers by Colour Cosmetics Category in 2014


Source: Euromonitor International

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August 19, 2015

Nestlé’s Wireless Coffee Machines: Bringing Specialty Coffee out of the Coffeehouse

Julian-McClellanAnalyst Insight by Julian McClellan - Research and Consulting Intern

When people think about wireless technology, smart phones, laptops, or routers (that magic box that gives you Wi-Fi) usually come to mind.  Yet wireless capabilities have spread into more novel applications.  The most exciting of these uses is machine-to-machine (M2M) technology, which enables any number of connected devices to be monitored and controlled remotely.  Tesla, for example, updates their vehicles wirelessly, and companies like Nest Labs have long been pushing the concept of a “smart home” sporting a network of intelligently connected appliances and devices.  Nestlé SA is the first coffee company to extensively utilize M2M tech in coffee machines, adding significant measures of value and control for Nestlé’s professional customers, enabling the spread of specialty coffee choices, and providing an excellent case-study on how the coffee industry can utilize M2M and wireless technology.

Nestlé: expanding the scope of M2M

Nestlé’s first M2M capable machine came in 2012 with the Nespresso Zenius, a pod-based machine from Nespresso’s business line.  In the Zenius, M2M allows remote tracking of maintenance procedures, alerting staff if maintenance is required.  Machine temperature and pressure are also tracked, and can be remotely adjusted to ensure a consistent brew.  2013 saw the introduction of the Nescafé Milano Lounge model, a self-serve machine capable of brewing a variety of speciality coffee beverages.  Equipped with wireless capabilities similar to the Zenius, it also allows customers to remotely track consumption data so that they might better utilize the machine’s targeted promotion features. 

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August 18, 2015

Liquid Concentrates Successfully Mix Dosing and On-the-Go Attributes

Karine.DussimonAnalyst Insight by Karine Dussimon - Senior Packaging Analyst

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Why do we increasingly hear about “water enhancers” when we already have “cordials” and “concentrates”? Well, while the product content is almost the same, it is actually more to do with the packaging. Brand owners have been revamping liquid concentrates, and almost created the category entirely in the case of the US, by introducing reduced-sugar versions of their products in small other plastic bottles with dispensing closures – breaking the pack type and size codes in the category. As is customary when a concept takes off, a new term, like “water enhancers”, is used when referring to it. After the brand Mio laid the groundwork for the pack format in the US in 2011, the format has indeed taken off, and it also boasts interesting growth potential to 2019, both within and beyond liquid concentrates.


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August 17, 2015

Liberty Interactive Media Acquires Zulily

Michelle GrantAnalyst Insight by Michelle Grant - Head of Retailing Research

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On 17 August 2015, Liberty Interactive Media, which owns the homeshopping brand, QVC, announced that it would acquire internet retailer, Zulily Inc, for US$2.4 billion.  With the homeshopping channel dying, this is an attempt for Liberty Interactive Media to stay relevant for the long term.  Similar moves in the travel industry, though, indicate that this acquisition will fail in positioning Liberty Interactive for the future.

Main goal: driving sales growth

The main goal of the acquisition is to drive sales growth for Liberty Interactive Media.  According to Euromonitor International, the sales via the homeshopping channel declined by 6% in 2014 and are expected to decline by 13% over the next five years. Because the companies have different types of customers, the hope is that they’ll be able to cross sell customers and perhaps, leverage Zulily’s experience in mobile transactions for growth:

 “With the two companies under one roof, “we can expose brands to more customers,” and there will also be opportunities to introduce QVC’s customers to Zulily and vice versa, Mr. George added. The two companies also are hoping to ride the growth of shoppers who increasingly buy on mobile devices.” –Wall Street Journal

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August 16, 2015

What's New in Baked Goods in 2015?

Pinar HosafciAnalyst Insight by Pinar Hosafci - Packaged Food Analyst

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The global baked goods market is set to grow by 5% in current value terms, reaching US$339 billion in 2015, while volumes continue to stagnate for another year. This is to a large extent driven by bread, which accounts for 84% of total baked good sales, but continues to suffer from a decline (or at best stasis) in volumes. While bread’s lacklustre performance exerts a downward bias to the overall category, there is more to baked goods than bread. In this edition of packaged food, baked goods includes desert mixes and frozen baked goods – recategorisation that adds a further US$10 billion to market coverage – in addition to its traditional categories of bread, cakes and pastries.

2015 sees a shift in top country rankings

Egypt is expected to overcome Turkey to become the world’s second biggest baked goods market in volume terms. This is in part due to the Turkish Government’s efforts such as the Preventing Bread Waste Campaign, which significantly reduced unpackaged white bread purchases in Turkey.  In part, it is the result of the ongoing subsidies given to bread flour in Egypt, which has kept unpackaged bread affordable for the masses.  At less than US$0.5/kg, bread prices in Egypt are among the lowest in the world, leading to over purchase of the staple.  With over nine million tonnes worth of sales in 2015, baked goods volumes in Egypt are more than France and Italy combined.

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