News 19.06.2023

Need to Know

The latest from day three at Viva Tech 2023, Absolut Vodka introducing a paper-based bottle and Amazon topping the first-of-its-kind sustainability value index.

Viva Tech daily recap: media in the age of AI

VivaTech, France VivaTech, France

France – How did artificial intelligence (AI) change the face of the media landscape? On its third day, Viva Tech interrogated future paths for the media and entertainment industry amid ongoing disruptive tech advancements.

From the challenge of reframing media literacy for the age of AI to catering for consumers’ Iwwiwwiwi (I want what I want when I want it) mindset, several sessions explored the upcoming challenges for the future of the media landscape. Others looked at these questions through the lens of entertainment. ‘What people watch nowadays takes zero effort to get into and is super exciting straightaway,’ said Patrick Mouratoglou, former tennis star and founder of The Mouratoglou Tennis Academy. ‘Something new has to happen every 20 seconds. Otherwise, you lose Gen Z.’

Friday 16 June 2023 also marked the day of Elon Musk’s highly anticipated appearance at the event. In discussion with senior executives from Orange, L’Oréal, Publicis and LVMH, the CEO of Tesla, SpaceX and, until recently, Twitter conceded that AI is ‘probably the most disruptive technology ever’. However, he confirmed being in favour of regulation to limit the risks that advanced artificial intelligence could cause the public.

Strategic opportunity

Keep an eye on LS:N Global's Media & Tech section in order not to miss our upcoming in-depth analysis of what happened at Viva Tech with exclusive insights about what it means for your business

Absolut unveils single-mould paper-based vodka bottles

Absolut, Global Absolut, Global
Absolut, Global Absolut, Global

UK – In June 2023, spirit brand Absolut Vodka announced a commitment to more recyclable packaging, with a new bottle made from paper. Only available in 22 British Tesco supermarkets during a three-month test in Greater Manchester, the bottle is part of the company's journey to create a 100% bio-based bottle and become carbon neutral by 2030. Although the containers are made from 57% paper, they still contain a plastic liner that the company labels as 'recyclable'.

Absolut tested the 500ml-sized bottles at festivals in the UK and Sweden before making them commercially available. The new paper bottles are reportedly eight times lighter and easier to carry than the standard glass alternatives. However, prices will be slightly higher than a regular bottle. The sustainable option will retail for £16 ($20.4, €18.6), which is £0.34 more ($0.43, €0.39) per 100ml than Absolut's regular vodka sold at Tesco.

In The Brands Rethinking Premium Drinks Packaging, we highlighted how similar sustainable packaging for alcohol is becoming more sophisticated as premium brands push sustainability through innovative, eco-friendly bottles and boxes.

Strategic opportunity

Players in the drink industry should question how sustainable packaging needs to deliver on functionality, quality, aesthetics and carbon footprint simultaneously. Bottles and cups with plastic liners remain a recycling challenge, even when the rest of the item is made from paper

Services for the UnderServed unveils free vending machines in NYC

Photography by Quỳnh Lê Mạnh Photography by Quỳnh Lê Mạnh

US – Harm-reduction and social services nonprofit Services for the UnderServed joined forces with New York City's Department of Health and Mental Hygiene to set up a free public health vending machine in Brownsville, Brooklyn, in June 2023. Instead of snacks and drinks, the device will offer free naloxone kits, fentanyl test strips, birth control packs, and bags containing tools for safer smoking of substances such as crack cocaine, methamphetamine and heroin.

The project aims to reduce fatal drug overdoses and mitigate other crises by giving residents free 24/7 access to lifesaving equipment. Resources and information will also be available via a QR code on the equipment. 'Vending machines are a well-known entity, they’re a well-known device, people stop and look and see what’s in there,' said Dr Ashwin Vasan, commissioner of the city’s Department of Health and Mental Hygiene. 'I think they’ll be surprised to find that this is a public health vending machine. I think that’s a great thing: it will start conversations, hopefully that get people talking about our overdose crisis and what they can do to engage.'

In our coverage of the future of the healthcare market, we've highlighted how, in the age of Civic Brands, a new generation of innovators is stepping in where governmental systems are failing to shape the future of healthcare.

Strategic opportunity

Players in the healthcare and pharmaceutical industry should take inspiration from Services for the UnderServed's vending machine and respond to the rising demand for 24/7 services and build a system that is preventative rather than reactive

Stat: Amazon tops first-of-its-kind sustainability value index

Haeckels Margate store, UK Haeckels Margate store, UK

Global - A study released in 2023 by Brand Finance analysed the financial value of sustainability perceptions of the world’s biggest brands. Surprisingly, Amazon comes up at the top of the list with a sustainability perceptions value of £15.6bn ($19.9bn, €18.2bn). Following Amazon is Tesla, Apple, Google and Microsoft.

Brand Finance notes that its sustainability metric 'is not an assessment of a company’s overall sustainability performance' but an indicator of the brand’s reputation for sustainability. The study is based on surveys with more than 100,000 members of the public from 36 countries. They were all questioned about 4,000 brands' attributes, including sustainability and ESG (environmental, social and corporate governance) factors.

'Failing to communicate clearly about ESG topics puts value at risk,' said Robert Haigh, Brand Finance's strategy and sustainability director. 'Communication must be authentic and supported by action, because over-claiming or greenwashing exposes the business to hundreds of millions of dollars of reputational damage.'

In The Overconsumption Market, we previously highlighted how even people who aim for more sustainable purchases overconsume by buying more sustainable goods than they need on marketplaces like Amazon.

Strategic opportunity

When consumers discover that a brand has acted unsustainably, 79% will reduce their use of it, Brand Finance found. Businesses need to set ambitious ESG targets and highlight their sustainability efforts while avoiding greenwashing

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