The Boston Consulting Group recently conducted a research project on Chinese nationalism and brand preference (I couldn't find the report on their site yet). They found that over 80% of Chinese consumers think that Pantene and Colgate are Chinese brands. 27% think that even Coke and Pepsi are Chinese brands. I guess this would be related to the products' packaging. In Japan, Coke uses their regular logo with English lettering. But in China, they have a special logo with Chinese characters. Here is a photo of a Chinese brand cola (left) and Chinese Coca Cola (right). This is the Japanese brand Calbee's potato chips. They write the word 'BBQ' in English.
Nikon has a Small World Photomicrography Competition every year. You can see the archives on this page. Last May, they held the 34th competition and the winners will be announced on October 15th. You can see the candidates and vote for your favorite on this page. Wow, what a great world.
Today, we saw this headline: Nikkei falls 4.1 pct on U.S. bailout rejection. My company shares elevators with Lehman Brothers Japan. I often hear their conversations: 'Will we be paid our salary this month?' and 'I couldn't sleep last night' and so on. Lehman and the company I am working for are in Roppongi Hills. Recently, people said that Roppongi Hills is cursed.
The building was opened only 5 years ago in 2003. But in 2004, a boy died because of a revolving door and in 2003, a dead baby was found in the garbage. The worst part is that the principal tenant companies are always in trouble. Livedoor, Goodwill, Cyber agent, and USEN, were all new companies (except for USEN) that enjoyed robust growth, but once they became a tenant of Roppongi Hills, they would begin to have troubles (the executive head of Livedoor was arrested, the CEO of Goodwill was fired, etc.) and they had to leave Roppongi Hills. This time, Lehman Brothers is the one in trouble.
Some people found that Roppongi Hills' address is 'Roppongi (6th trees) 6 street, Roppongi Hills (6th trees Hills)'. You know this means '666'. And from the Tameike Sanno station, the No.13 exit is the fastest way to Roppongi Hills. The building itself looks like a big, tall grave marker and the revolving door looks like a gate into another world. I think whoever found these coincidences did a good job.
As a person who works in Roppongi Hills everyday, I must tell you it's not so great. Actually I can't like that place at all (though this doesn't mean that everything is expensive or that restaurants are always busy). I just feel that there is something wrong there (trust me!!). Also, I must tell you one more thing. In Roppongi Hills, there is a small Japanese garden called Mori Garden. The owner of Roppingi Hills ( Mori building ) left the garden in fact and didn't build anything in that area on purpose. Because it was the place where the Forty-seven Ronin (Akoroushi of the famous story Chushin gura) committed Harakiri. Yes, here is a new urban legend!