Shiseido aspires to become a major global cosmetics marketer-with 25% of sales outside Japan by 2000 from 9% now-through acquisitions and brands like Benefiance skincare, but the Shiseido brand that flies off Asian cosmetics counters doesn't have much global appeal. The popular and seemingly endless line of creams, foundations, powders and moisturizers called uvwhite promises to lighten skin color.
Is romance dead in Japan? Wine marketers are churning out more and more products in the fast-growing wine-for-one category for women compelled to sip wine alone while men swig beer. With mini-bottles, mini-cans and paper cartons for picnics, domestic wine company Mercian Corp.'s sales have already doubled original estimates. Meanwhile the guys are logging on to Japan's first beer sales promotion on the Internet, by Heineken.
More marketers are creating international brand supremos. At Grand Metropolitan, Paul Curtis becomes group marketing development director, charged with building brand equity.
The call is free, but only in Goias. Rogerio Vieira at local phone company Telegoias in central Brazil starts Fale Gratis (Talk Free) next month. Callers willing to listen to a 30-second ad can make free local calls from public phones for 21/2 minutes. Advertisers, who pay 25 cents a call, can't control who dials the phone but they can target specific neighborhoods.
Only in Rio de Janeiro. In another uniquely Brazilian medium, enterprising adman Nelson Ricardo Pinto Martins has bought 30 bikes to ply the bicycle paths alongside Rio's beaches-draped in advertising messages. Rates range from $541 for one sunburned cyclist for 4 hours to $1,873 for 10 bikes.
A mass exodus from USA Today International after a restructuring that eliminates international as a separate division has led to exotic-sounding new jobs in TV for some. What exactly does former ad manager Sally Young do as head of ad sales for Karaoke TV, a new Asian cable channel? Less exotically, USA Today's London-based marketing director, Zoltan Vardy, has gone to Turner International as business development manager, Central and Eastern Europe, initially launching Turner's Cartoon Network there.
Meanwhile, Chris Stephenson has changed from MTV into...women's dresses? In an unusual career move, the MTV ad sales guy is taking on the new post of managing director at Miss Selfridge, to try to develop the 129-store U.K. women's clothing chain-with a few outlets in Holland, Germany and Portugal-into a real international brand.
Time says Robert Crozier left as president of Time Atlantic due to "a difference of opinion on strategy." Under successor and former VP-consumer marketing Richard Gordon Atkinson, who has a finance background, Time will look at starting new magazines in Europe. First project: a local version of People.M
Contributing: Claudia Penteado, Rio de Janeiro; Carol Hui Akiyama, Tokyo.