Originally published on Wed February 22, 2012 7:29 pm
Not all that long ago, many Americans thought of Chinese food as fried rice, chow mein and orange chicken. And one reliable place to find it was at the mall, at places like Panda Express.
But food court mainstay Panda Express is now in the midst of a major transformation. That means moving from mall basements to stand-alone restaurants and keeping pace with an increasingly sophisticated American palate.
Since the economic collapse, the commercial real estate market has been faced with a glut of vacant buildings. And that chief icon of American consumerism–the shopping mall–hasn't been spared. But that's not to say these massive markets can't be reclaimed. Recently, NHPR's Word of Mouth host Virginia Prescott dished with a New York Times reporter about the rising trend of "repurposing" the American mall.
New Hampshire lawmakers are proposing a law that would do away with the Certificate of Need process. This is a state requirement for hospitals and other healthcare facilities that want to expand or establish new medical facilities. The aim of CON is to keep redundant healthcare out of the system.
Cancer Treatment Centers of America is eyeing a spot in New Hampshire. The for profit chain wants to build a hospital in the Northeast. CTCA successfully lobbied Georgia to change its regulations so a specialty hospital could be built in that state. The company is hoping lawmakers in New Hampshire will make similar changes. A proposed law would exempt specialty cancer hospitals from certain regulations and also from Medicaid taxes.
Here’s something else you’re bound to hear somebody say before kickoff on Sunday,“I don’t really watch football, but I like the ads and maybe the halftime show.” With bazillions of viewers watching "sans Tevo,” advertisers pull out all the stops for the big game, rolling out their most creative, edgy, and, hopefully, memorable campaigns. This year though, Superbowl advertisers are adding a new offensive move to their playbooks – digital integration. Here to tell us more is Sean Owen, CEO of the marketing and ad agency Wedu.
Originally published on Thu January 26, 2012 12:01 am
Just four years ago, Starbucks seemed to be losing its mojo. Howard Schultz, the man who made Starbucks a household name, returned to the company as CEO. He closed hundreds of stores, streamlined operations and set the company on a path to record revenues and strong profits.
Starbucks serves 60 million beverages a week, which adds up to big profits. The company reports its earnings Thursday. In a bid to further expand its consumer base, Starbucks has a new roast and plans to produce more retail products to sell outside of its coffeehouses.
In the world of weight loss programs, Weight Watchers rules, with more than a million members worldwide. New CEO David Kirchoff is credited with increasing meeting attendance in North America by fourteen percent, and upping online membership by 64%. Those numbers mean money, of course. Weigh Watchers is valued at an estimated at five billion dollars…double that of a year ago.
Concerns about a government that can’t work together to solve problems and possible cuts to valuable federal programs were top concerns of about a dozen North Country businessmen who met Thursday with Sen. Kelly Ayotte (R).
“Our whole society and our economy needs greater confidence,” said Peter Powell, a realtor from Lancaster who attended the meeting held by the North Country Council in Bethlehem.
With Christmas and Hanukkah wrapped-up, we've officially reached the pre-New Year's lull. This brief respite from the regularly scheduled holiday cheer is when many people take the opportunity to consider their accomplishments and failures over the past year, and resolve to do better in the future. Other people just go to work for a few days and get really, really bored at their desks as they countdown to their next party.
Either way, it's a bit of a restless period, isn't it?
Contrary to the buy now messaging of the season, kids aren’t looking only for instant gratification. Take Lego. In 2005, Lego Corporation came back from the brink by capitalizing on research showing that kids are inspired by the difficulty and process of mastering a complicated model. So, rather than dumbing down to compete with the plug-in immediacy of video games, Lego ramped up the sophistication of its models.
Originally published on Mon December 12, 2011 12:02 pm
Millions of Americans wake up each morning without a job, even though they desperately want to work. It's one of the depressing legacies of the financial crisis and Great Recession.
NPR and the Kaiser Family Foundation conducted a poll of people who had been unemployed or with an insufficient level of work for more than a year. The results document the financial, emotional and physical effects of long-term unemployment and underemployment.