February 29, 2008
FIRST FORD KUGA ROLLS OFF THE SAARLOUIS PRODUCTION LINE IN GERMANY
SAARLOUIS, Germany - Production of the all-new Ford Kuga, Ford of Europe's first entry into the highly competitive crossover market, began February 26, 2008 at the Ford plant in Saarlouis, Germany.
The company plans to build around 45,000 examples of the new model in Saarlouis this year - equivalent to nearly 10 per cent of the plant's annual production volume.
Altogether Ford invested a very significant amount in new manufacturing technology to support Kuga production at Saarlouis. Sales of the Kuga will progressively begin across all European markets a little later this year.
The Kuga is the fourth model to be launched at Saarlouis in the past 12 months. It follows the new Ford C-MAX in March 2007, the new Ford Focus in December 2007 and the new Ford Focus ST earlier this month.
The Ford Kuga is being built exclusively in Saarlouis and around 84 per cent of production will be exported to a total of 32 different countries. The five largest sales markets are Germany, Italy, Great Britain, France and Spain. |GlobalGiants.com|
February 28, 2008
Tata Companies Unite to Support First Book and Distribute 65,000 New Books to Children in Need
Photo: Stephen Wilkes, from Corus, is reading a new book to a Dodge Park Elementary School student. Tata Group Companies have donated over 65,000 books for distribution to children in need across the USA.
WASHINGTON -- First Book and The Tata Group North America representatives gathered Feb. 27 at Eight O'Clock Coffee(R) in Landover, MD, to kick off the distribution of 65,000 new books to children in need nationwide USA. Second grade students from Dodge Park Elementary School were the first students to receive brand-new books as a result of the support of The Tata Group North America. The students participated in reading circles with Tata Company representatives to celebrate First Book's mission to provide new books to disadvantaged children.
First Book is a nonprofit organization with a single mission: to give children from low-income families the opportunity to read and own their first new books.
Tata, headquartered in India, is among the world's most trusted and respected corporate brands. The Tata Group is comprised of 98 operating companies with operations in seven business sectors - Engineering, Materials, Energy, Chemicals, Consumer Products, Services, and Communications and Information Systems. Tata has more than 80 offices in the U.S. and Canada and more than 15,000 employees. |GlobalGiants.com|
February 27, 2008
LG Electronics and General Electric Announce Licensing Agreement
Patent cross-license agreement covers refrigerators and cooking appliances
Photo: Lynn Pendergrass, President and CEO of GE Consumer & Industrial-Americas (left) and Young Ha Lee, President and CEO of the LG Electronics Digital Appliance Company, celebrate the signing of a cross-licensing agreement between GE and LG for refrigeration and cooking appliances.
SEOUL, Korea, Feb. 26 -- LG Electronics (LG), a global leader and technology innovator in consumer electronics, today announced that it has entered into a cross licensing agreement with GE Consumer & Industrial, an industry leader in major appliance, lighting and integrated industrial equipment, systems and services. This new agreement will allow LG and GE to use one another's patents for refrigerators and cooking appliances without paying licensing fees.
LG and GE have collaborated on cooking appliances since 1999, both in technologies and product development. This new agreement will help the companies strengthen their competitiveness worldwide. This agreement will be especially helpful to LG, in its push to expand its presence in digital appliances globally. The company currently sells its products through all three of the top retailers in North America: The Home Depot, Sears and Best Buy.
While, LG Electronics, Inc. is a global leader and technology innovator in consumer electronics, home appliances and mobile communications, GE Consumer & Industrial spans the globe as an industry leader in major appliance, lighting and integrated industrial equipment, systems and services. |GlobalGiants.com|
February 26, 2008
IBM's New z10 Mainframe Computer
Photo: IBM technician Len Centonze, Highland, N.Y., assembles a "multi-chip module," at the company's Poughkeepsie, N.Y., plant. The module is the processing engine at the heart of the company's new z10 mainframe computer, which packs the computing power of 1,500 PC-style servers while using 85 percent less electricity and occupying 85% less floor space.
Photo: IBM employees (Doug Decker, right, New Paltz N.Y.; and Richard Nelson, Kingston, N.Y.) ready a new z10 mainframe computer for shipment at the company's Poughkeepsie, N.Y., plant.
A single z10 offers the computing power of 1,500 PC-style servers, uses 85 percent less electricity and occupies 85% less floor space.
The all-new z10 is IBM's first mainframe purpose-built to handle the exploding demand for digital transactions enabled by the Internet, a trend which is creating crowded, over-burdened corporate data centers -- computer rooms which process everything from consumer banking transactions to drivers' license forms. |GlobalGiants.com|
February 24, 2008
Designing of Daimler AG Mercedes-Benz "smart fortwo"
Photo: Show car smart crosstown: CAD rendering of exterior with color-highlighted "Tridion" safety cell. A solid steel "Tridion" frame, left visible at the exterior as a major design element, completely surrounds and protects the passenger compartment, and defines the basic shape of the car as well.
The history of the smart is short. The smart city coupe with gasoline engine came onto the market in 1998, the diesel-engined version in 1999. The smart cabrio complemented the model lineup at a later stage. It was followed by the smart roadster, the smart roadster-coupe and the smart forfour -- all of them history today. This is because the brand is now fully concentrating on the archetype of the smart -- the two-seater car.
Giving concepts a concrete shape is a challenge that a designer must face time and time again. But no matter how many times the process is repeated, it can never become routine. Good design stubbornly resists any clear definition. This is largely because a product must first mature in people's perception before it can truly be considered as good design.
Thus giving a form to "things" is far from simple. Particularly when these "things" are not mere consumer goods, but elements in a deep, emotional relationship. A car, however, is quite a different matter. Here the design becomes the user interface to our emotions and to our demands on the subtle perception of the technical capabilities that the vehicle represents. Our subconscious expects faultless technology, and our sense of aesthetics wants to be wooed.
It didn't take long for Mercedes-Benz to decide what basic features a car of this kind must have: four wheels, two seats, an engine, and a length of approx 2.5 meters. That was back in 1981. Discussions took place, but the resulting proposals were not found to meet the safety requirements of Mercedes-Benz. Ten years passed and the project was put on ice again and again until Mercedes-Benz Design in Sindelfingen finally managed, in cooperation with the Advanced Design Center in the USA, to reconcile form with function in such a way as to satisfy the company's requirements and to ensure that the vehicle had emotional presence.
A greenfield factory was built where completely new approaches could be implemented at every stage of the development process.
The designers drew their inspiration from fashion, architecture, furniture, and also from icons of automotive history.
Ultimately, this process yielded the unique smart body concept that was to open up totally new possibilities: for example the variable color concept, whereby the smart owners can change the color of the plastic body parts of their vehicle, to give the car a new look whenever they see fit. |GlobalGiants.com|
February 20, 2008
Volvo produces its 15 millionth Car
Photo: All-new Volvo C70, Passion Red.
Photo: Volvo Ã–V4 and PV4.
The very first Volvo car left the factory on April 14, 1927. It was called the Ã–V4 because the letters Ã–V are Swedish for "Open Car" and 4 denoted the number of cylinders powering the new Swedish car. On February 20, 2008, it is once again an open car that is under the spotlights. That's when car number 15,000,000, an attractive convertible Volvo C70, will leave the factory in Uddevalla.
Photo: All-new Volvo C70 and falcons, Dubai. (Photographer Elisabeth Ohlson Walli)
In the first year, production proceeded at a modest pace, with 297 cars being sold in 1927. Emerging from the shadow of the global economic depression and Second World War, it took Volvo 23 years to build its first 100,000 cars. Today, that figure corresponds to about three months of production.
However, Volvo has never really been a high-volume manufacturer. Early in the company's history, it was decided that the brand name should signify quality and safety. Today the Volvo brand is known for the attractive design of cars that reflect characteristic Scandinavian design traditions. |GlobalGiants.com|
February 18, 2008
Longines turns out its 34 millionth watch
Saint-Imier (Switzerland) - Swiss brand Longines just turned out its 34 millionth watch. This timepiece, a HydroConquest from the Longines Sport Collection, is showcased at the 34 Million Watches museum in Saint-Imier (Switzerland). The company, which celebrated 175 years of existence in 2007, accurately records all the timepieces produced in Saint-Imier since then.
The Museum of the 34 Millionth seeks to display the basic parameters of watch manufacturing in 34 showcases, each symbolising one million timepieces. It provides an overview of what watch manufacturing involves, period after period, suggesting trains of thought on the amount of time needed for the allegorical production of one million timepieces. Each showcase features period visual and written material, which seeks to throw new light on the underlying implications of Longines' own manufacturing activities. |GlobalGiants.com|
February 14, 2008
Center for Public Leadership at Harvard's Kennedy School serves the common good
The Center for Public Leadership (CPL) at Harvard's Kennedy School of Government has been recognized by Affinity Research's VISTA Awards for having one of the most widely read magazine pieces in 2007. The America's Best Leader's feature in the November 19 issue of U.S. News & World Report, a joint effort of CPL and U.S. News, was read by 86% of those surveyed, making it the third most popular piece for the fourth quarter.
CPL's collaboration with U.S. News involves a selection process, conducted by an independent panel, which results in the honoring of 15-25 of the country's most effective leaders. CPL and U.S. News also jointly commission a public opinion survey of Americans' attitudes about leaders from all sectors of society. CPL then analyzes the survey data to produce the National Leadership Index. This year's index reveals that more than three-quarters of the public (77%) now say that our country has a crisis in leadership. It also provides some thought-provoking findings relative to the upcoming presidential election. For example, the next president's likeability is more important to the youngest Americans surveyed (those age 18-24) and the oldest Americans (those 65 years and older) than it is to those age 25 to 64. But these same two groups believe that it is less important for the next president to be decisive than do Americans age 25 to 64.
Established in 2000 through a generous grant from the Wexner Foundation, the Center for Public Leadership at Harvard's Kennedy School serves the common good by providing cutting-edge teaching and research as well as hands-on training in the practical skills of leadership for people in government, nonprofits, and business. |GlobalGiants.com|
February 12, 2008
Nokia launches premier mobile advertising network
Nokia Media Network, comprised of top operators and publishers including AccuWeather, Discovery, Hearst, Reuters, and Sprint is resulting in industry-leading response rates for advertisers
Photos: Nokia at the Mobile World Congress 2008, Barcelona, Spain.
Mobile World Congress 2008, Barcelona, Spain/Espoo, Finland - Nokia today announced the launch of the global Nokia Media Network, a premium advertising network including over 70 leading publisher and operators as well as Nokia media properties. AccuWeather, Discovery, Hearst, Reuters, and Sprint have joined with Nokia to form the first global mobile ad network of top tier publishers. Nokia Media Network's wide reach of the most desirable mobile audience is yielding click-through rates averaging 10% in certain channels, the highest reported response rates in the industry.
"Nokia is building upon an unrivaled understanding of the mobile consumer, our relationships with blue chip publishers and top tier operators, and a legacy of campaign optimization through analytics to create a high-performing solution for advertisers," said Vice President and Head of Nokia Interactive, Mike Baker. "The biggest brands in the world trust us with their mobile advertising because they know the Nokia Media Network enables them to reach the largest, highest quality audience on mobile and provides the best ROI."
Nokia enables advertisers to place ads on high quality and brand-safe publisher and operator mobile Web pages, as well as Nokia properties, representing an unprecedented global consumer reach - more than 100 million mobile consumers around the globe. As part of the turn-key service for advertisers, the award-winning mobile marketing team from Nokia creates mobile campaigns for hundreds of top brands, including BMW, Paramount, and MobiTV.
Nokia acquired mobile advertising leader, Enpocket, in October 2007. Nokia leverages Enpocket's ground breaking analytics technology to optimize campaigns, improve conversions, and measure campaign performance across the network.
"Mobile has been beneficial in helping BMW reach consumers at the lower end of the funnel, when they are close to making their vehicle-buying decision," said Samuel Martinez Ballesteros, Marketing Communication
Internet and New Media, BMW Ibérica. "Nokia has helped us reach our target audience, resulting in increased visibility and lead generation for us."
To share expertise with brands, agencies, and publishers globally, Nokia has expanded its account management and media sales teams to include offices in Beijing, Boston, Chicago, Dusseldorf, Frankfurt, Helsinki, London, Los Angeles, Madrid, Milan, Minneapolis, Mumbai, Munich, New York, Paris, Singapore and Shanghai. |GlobalGiants.com|
February 11, 2008
NADA Chairman Urges Automakers to Treat Dealers as 'Real Partners'
Photo: NADA's AutoExecMag.Com Car of the Week is 2009 Corvette ZR1. Detroit's own Kid Rock performs as the Chevrolet Corvette ZR1 makes its world debut on stage at GM Style - General Motors' car studded music and fashion gala that kicked-off the 2008 North American International Auto Show Saturday, January 12, 2008 in Detroit, Michigan. Chevy's new ZR1 supercar is the fastest, most powerful car ever made by GM. At $100,000 plus, it's also the most expensive Vette yet, with limited production of 2,000 units. Competition: Ferrari 599, Nissan GT-R, Porsche 911 Turbo.
SAN FRANCISCO -- Dealers are "uniquely qualified" to connect three sectors that drive the U.S. auto industry -- consumers, automakers and Congress, said Dale Willey in his remarks at the National Automobile Dealers Association's (NADA) 91st Annual Convention & Exposition in San Francisco.
Willey, president of Dale Willey Automotive in Lawrence, Kansas, says after 37 years in the retail-auto industry and as NADA chairman over the past year, he now sees the role of dealers differently.
"We are the bridge that connects the consumer to the manufacturer," Willey said. "We hear everything the car buyer likes or doesn't like about a vehicle."
It's this experience that makes dealers "uniquely qualified" to help automakers develop products that sell, says Willey. Dealers gather valuable product information daily under real-world conditions.
Dealers must work with automakers as "real partners" -- not in a legal sense, but in terms of working together with one goal in mind -- producing and selling vehicles that consumers want to drive, Willey added.
Willey says manufacturers spend millions of dollars on surveys, polls and focus groups to figure out what consumers want," he says. "Just because a focus group likes something doesn't mean that consumers are going to rush out and buy it," Willey says.
America's franchised new-car and truck dealers "know better than anyone what consumers want to drive," Willey said.
In addition, dealers understand legislation that affects the industry and the difficulties automakers face in creating cars with increased fuel economy, he said. "Dealers also understand the consumer's desire to get better gas mileage."
The National Automobile Dealers Association, founded in 1917 and based in McLean, Va., represents about 20,000 franchised new-car and truck dealers holding nearly 43,000 separate franchises, domestic and international. |GlobalGiants.com|
February 10, 2008
RENAULT LAGUNA ESTATE Voted 2007's 'Most Beautiful Car of the Year' and 'Most Beautiful Interior of the Year'
The 23rd annual International Automotive Festival of Paris, which is currently being held at the French capital's HÃ´tel des Invalides (February 7-10, 2008), saw Renault Laguna Estate pick up the top prizes in both the 2007 'Most Beautiful Car of the Year' and 'Most Beautiful Interior of the Year' categories.
Designed with quality as a prevailing theme, Renault Laguna was released four months ago and is available in 56 countries. Every year, the International Automotive Festival of Paris offers a chance to discover and reward the creative talent in the world of the automobile.
Of the 11 Grand Prix awards presented in the course of yesterday evening's opening ceremony, the prize for 2007's 'Most Beautiful Car of the Year' went to Renault's Laguna Estate which was chosen from a shortlist of high standard cars by the voting public from across Europe. The jury also announced the winner of 2007's 'Most Beautiful Interior of the Year' award which went to Renault Laguna in recognition of its interior styling, conspicuous quality, harmonious shapes, materials and colors. |GlobalGiants.com|
February 9, 2008
Artexpo New York Announces 30th Anniversary Hall of Fame Inductees
World's Largest Fine & Popular Art Fair Recognizes Some of its Great Artists, Galleries and Publishers
In recognition of Artexpo New York's 30th anniversary, show organizers today announced the names of 30 art icons to be inducted into a new Hall of Fame.
Since debuting in 1978, Artexpo New York has helped launch the careers of some of the finest American artists of the 20th Century. Today, some of those art greats were singled out to be honored for their involvement in the world's largest fine and popular art fair. The list includes artists, galleries and publishers that have left their mark on the show and the American art scene.
The inductees are: Andy Warhol, Chuck Jones, Erte, Ron English, Joel & Renee Meisner, Dr. Ron Parker, Bruce McGaw, Nancy McGaw, Agudelo-Botero Orlando, Christine Rosamond, Charles Fazzino, George Rodrigue, Crash, Michael Delacroix, RC Gorman, Salvador Dali, James Rizzi, Martin Blinder, Marilyn Goldberg, Leonor Fini, Max Papart, Marvin Rosenbaum, Bill Mack, Eyvind Earle, Nan Miller, Sylvia Chait, Victor Vasarely, Jacques Soussana, Jack Solomon, Carolyn Solomon.
Tickets for Artexpo New York are available the day of the show at the Javits Convention Center box office. The show is open to the public on March 1 from 10am-6pm, March 2 from 11am-6pm, and March 3 from 10am-2pm.
More than 50,000 visitors, including trade buyers and consumer art enthusiasts, are expected to attend Artexpo New York, where they can purchase both traditional and cutting-edge works ranging from original paintings and sculptures to limited-edition lithographs, animation art, photography and more. The 2008 show will also have an expanded selection of international art available, showcasing the latest trends in Europe, Asia, and Latin America. |GlobalGiants.com|
February 8, 2008
Detroit Electric Car to Return After 100 Years
ZAP to Carry Revived Detroit Electric Brand
Photo: Electric car executives Steve Schneider, CEO of ZAP, and Detroit Electric Chairman Albert Lam celebrate the revival of Detroit Electric next to a 1918 Detroit Electric 75 Coupe, which will be on display February 9-12, 2008 at NADA (National Automobile Dealers Association) Conference and Expo in San Francisco.
In a joint announcement, US electric car pioneer ZAP (BULLETIN BOARD: ZAAP) and China Youngman Automotive Group announced today they are reviving the 100- year-old electric car brand Detroit Electric for their automotive joint venture. Detroit Electric officials look forward to bringing new vehicle technologies to market by 2009, and beyond that the possibility of bringing new manufacturing and green collar jobs to California.
Detroit Electric plans to introduce its first electric cars and buses in 2009. The ZAP Alias, which is under development for the joint venture, will be one of several vehicles being planned to carry the Detroit Electric brand. ZAP is planning a presentation on Detroit Electric for North American auto dealers at NADA 2008, the world's largest auto show for dealers (National Automobile Dealers Association (NADA) annual meeting and exhibition, February 9-12, 2008, San Francisco).
Detroit Electric was an early 20th Century electric car. The Anderson Electric Car Company started building the cars under the Detroit Electric brand over 100 years ago. Anderson of Detroit, Michigan is the longest running electric car company in history, operating between 1907 and 1939. In its heyday, Detroit Electric was an American icon and the cars were very popular with customers like Thomas Edison, Charles Proteus Steinmetz, Henry Ford's Wife Clara, and John D. Rockefeller, Jr. Detroit Electric plans to build a special edition electric vehicle based on the original Detroit Electric as a tribute for the new name of the joint venture.
While joint venture officials are reviving the Detroit Electric brand, the first offices and facilities are planned, not for Detroit, but California. Management will be opening offices in California and evaluating manufacturing opportunities for economic development within the state. |GlobalGiants.com|
February 7, 2008
2008 Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week in Berlin
High-Class Fashion Event and
World Premiere of the new Mercedes-Benz CLC Coupé
The second Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week in Berlin (January 27 to 31, 2008) made its stages and catwalks available for the creations of established fashion designers from Germany and abroad, as well as up-and-coming young design talent. Mercedes-Benz is a sponsor of the event which bears its name, and has created a remarkable key visual for this high-class fashion event. It shows top model Eva Padberg with the CLC Sports Coupé, which is celebrating its world premiere during the event.
In addition to its involvement in the Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week in Berlin, the Stuttgart-based premium manufacturer sponsors other international fashion events that include the Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week in New York, which is immediately following the shows in Berlin from February 1 to 8. |GlobalGiants.com|