News roundup—8th July 2009

News roundup—8th July 2009

It’s official: The UK contract stationery business formerly
known as Corporate Express is now Staples Advantage
UK. Office supplies cataloguer/retailer Staples had acquired its one-time rival last year.

The woes of German conglomerate Arcandor are
well known, but it’s not the only German
cataloguer suffering the effects of the recession:
Neckermann is making about 175 workers at its Frankfurt
logistics centre redundant reports

Oops: Home Shopping Selections and MRP Direct
were reprimanded by the Advertising Standards Agency for
including in a despatched box of slippers a copy of MRP’s
Don’t Be Timid catalogue of sex aids, reports The Telegraph and nearly every other major
paper. So how many complaints did the ASA receive about the
naughty catalogue? One. co-founder Michael Smith sings the praises of
London’s “great entrepreneurial community” to the
Financial Times in a sidebar to an article
about the difficulties most pure-plays face competing against
high-street names online.

Jonathan Straight, chief executive of Straight, a
manufacturer/marketer of recycling and waste containers, is
profiled in the Yorkshire Post. Fun fact: He changed his
surname by deed poll from Gay.

Ouch: In an article about Avon and an overall increase
in direct selling, The Independent calls the Betterware
catalogue “everyone’s favourite waste of paper”. An
executive from Vie at Home is included in the article as
well, citing the company’s 14 per cent increase in sales reps.


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