PAYDAY LENDERS IN THE FRAME

The Office of Fair Trading (OFT) has warned payday lenders – legal loan sharks that charge up to 4,000 per cent APR – to clean up their act or face closure.

This follows the OFT uncovering significant amounts of evidence that the aggressive marketing and seriously shabby way the lenders treat their victims pushes many vulnerable families into a crippling spiral of debt. One example given by the OFT is the continuous payment authority that many lenders insist is signed by their borrowers, a document that enables the lenders to clean out the bank accounts of their victims if they are late in paying. A full report on the abuses is expected from the OFT this January.

Meanwhile website Mumsnet has banned advertisements from all payday lenders on the grounds that it does not want its name associated with them.

ANYONE FOR GOLF?

A group of multi-national TV manufacturers who ran a cartel to fix the price of cathode ray tubes across the world has been fined a record £1.19 billion by the EU.

The EU found that the illegal cartel, which included Panasonic, Phillips, Samsung, Technicolour, Toshiba and LG Electrics fixed prices of the now-obsolete tubes, which accounted for 70% of the cost of a TV set, for 10 years between 1996 and 2006, when they were replaced by LCD and plasma technology. Secret meetings to determine prices took place on golf courses, the EU were told. Continue reading

BOYCOTT AMAZON

A boycott of internet retailer Amazon for its tax avoidance has been called by the publishers of Ethical Consumer magazine.

Back in November Amazon admitted to MPs that it based its UK and European operations in Luxembourg for the lower tax rates and claimed not to know its UK turnover.

Other large firms now coming under public scrutiny for the tax they avoid and leave the rest of us to pay are Starbucks and Google.

MEN BEHAVING BADLY

Actor Martin Clunes has become the second man to be dropped from the £50 million ad campaign for Churchill Insurance for motoring offences.

The versatile and popular actor admitted to Churchill Insurance that he had reached 12 points on his driving licence for speeding offences and had been banned from driving by magistrates under totting up rules.

Clunes follows comedian Vic Reeves, who was the voice of the Churchill nodding dog until he was caught driving whilst three and a half times over the legal alcohol limit in 2005.

HEADING FOR A FALL?

Have our train operating companies, and our Department of Transport got their long term marketing disastrously wrong?

We ask this bearing in mind the constant fare increases designed to pay for improvements to the inter city services, such as modestly reduced journey times, for which it is thought the well-heeled business community will be happy to pay. (time is money after all) Continue reading

FOODIE TREAT

Those looking for a useful business gift that lasts all year might consider copies of the Hardens independent restaurant guides.

These review more than 3,000 establishments and can be supplied leather-bound and embossed with initials. The UK guide costs £15.99 but is available to readers of Marketing Matters for £10.99. The London guide costs £12.99 with a special reader price of £8.99. Prices include post and packing free in the UK.

Tel: 020 7839 4763 www.hardens.com/st

SWEET LUXURY

One luxurious new product for the ones who have everything, or who aspire to, is the sugar cane swizzle stick, crystallised South African cane sugar, white or amber, moulded around the end of a stick and giving two to three spoonfuls of the sweet stuff when stirred into a hot drink.

Currently the sticks are being offered to top end UK hotels and some retail outlets but could there be, given the decidedly up-market image and novelty value, a promotional use somewhere?

Details: www.sugarcrystalco.co.uk

Marketing Matters Jan/Feb 2012 ISSUE 30

PAYDAY LENDERS IN THE FRAME The Office of Fair Trading (OFT) has warned payday lenders – legal loan sharks that charge up to 4,000 per cent APR – to clean….

ANYONE FOR GOLF? A group of multi-national TV manufacturers who ran a cartel to fix the price of cathode ray tubes across the world has been fined a record £1.19 billion by the EU….

BOYCOTT AMAZON A boycott of internet retailer Amazon for its tax avoidance has been called by the publishers of Ethical Consumer magazine….

MEN BEHAVING BADLY Actor Martin Clunes has become the second man to be dropped from the £50 million ad campaign for Churchill Insurance for motoring….

HEADING FOR A FALL? Have our train operating companies, and our Department of Transport got their long term marketing disastrously wrong?….

FOODIE TREAT Those looking for a useful business gift that lasts all year might consider copies of the Hardens independent restaurant guides….

SWEET LUXURY One luxurious new product for the ones who have everything, or who aspire to, is the sugar cane swizzle stick, crystallised South African cane sugar….

February 2013 films to watch

A Good Day To Die Hard is released in UK cinemas 14 February 2013 from Twentieth Century Fox.

A Good Day To Die Hard is the film that SG7.biz wants to see the most this month, we will be looking forward to going to see it once it is out on the big screen.

Details:
Bruce Willis returns in his most iconic role as John McClane – the “real” hero with the skills and attitude to always be the last man standing. This time the take-no-prisoners cop is really in the wrong place at the wrong time after traveling to Moscow to help his estranged son Jack. With the Russian underworld in pursuit, and battling a countdown to war, the two McClanes discover that their opposing methods make them unstoppable heroes.