Breakfast Briefing: Supermarket supplier investigation, Apple boss silent on Watch sales and Oprah invests in Weight Watchers

Apple Watch: boss stays silent on sales
Apple Watch: boss stays silent on sales

Welcome to Marketing's morning briefing, a daily shot of news and a recap of the best longer reads and videos. Today, an undercover C4 News report on conditions for workers at a packing supplier alarms supermarkets, Apple's chief dodges questions on the Watch and Oprah Winfrey is to star in ads for Weight Watchers after investing in the company.

Supermarkets investigate working conditions after Channel 4 report

Aldi has suspended its orders from an apple packing plant in Kent run by FW Mansfield after a Channel 4 undercover investigation filmed workers in squalid accommodation.

Waitrose, Sainsbury’s and Marks & Spencer have launched investigations after the report, which also showed Romanian workers under highly-pressurised working conditions.

Channel 4 reported the Gangmasters Licensing Authority is conducting an investigation into the agencies that supply Mansfields with workers. The agency featured in Channel 4's report is Pro-Force.

Source: Channel 4 News

Apple boss declines to issue Watch sales figures

Tim Cook, the chief executive of Apple, dodged questions about the sales performance of the Apple Watch yesterday in an interview at a Wall Street Journal event.

"This is competitive information," Cook offered as an excuse for not answering the question about the company’s new product, which went on sale in April.

However, he disclosed that streaming service Apple Music, which was launched in June with a three-month free trial offer, now has 6.5 million paying subscribers.

Source: Engadget

Oprah Winfrey buys $43m Weight Watchers stake

US media personality Oprah Winfrey is investing $43m (£27.4m) to buy 10 per cent of dieting company Weight Watchers.

Weight Watchers initially approached Winfrey, 61, about a partnership, and she began using the company's weight-loss program two months ago, said a spokesperson for the former talk show queen.

Winfrey plans to publicly document her experiences on the programme and appear in ads, following previous endorsements by singers Jennifer Hudson and Jessica Simpson. She will also join Weight Watchers' board of directors.

Source: Reuters

In case you missed it...two longer reads

Winners revealed: A night of celebration at the Marketing New Thinking Awards

Always #LikeAGirl, the powerful campaign that captured the female empowerment zeitgeist, has swept the board at the inaugural Marketing New Thinking Awards in association with Sky Media, scooping the Grand Prix and three category gongs.

Diversity marketing needs to be more than skin-deep

As marketing – and the world at large – continues to face rapid change, marketers will need to reframe the issues of diversity and inclusion, transitioning from a moral matter of representation to a problem-solving necessity. Time for the #DiversityRevolution, writes Rebecca Coleman. 

If you watch one video today...

Rather than a video, this week we're pointing you towards our new podcast. Listen to the second episode below and find out more here.

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