Blog: Pernod Ricard looks for material gains with wearable tech
Andy Morton | 29 January 2014
Here at just-drinks we like to be on the cutting-edge of technology, so here's a nod (and a wink) to the latest in fashion unveiled at Pernod Ricard's "innovation" day in Paris this week.
Below is our exclusive footage of a T-shirt that displays personalised messages and images keyed in from a computer or mobile device. The women holding it is creator Alison Lewis, who owns Californian wearable technology firm Switch, and the prototype design was only completed a few days before it was brought to Paris.
But what's this got to do with drinks?
Well, the technology is part-funded by Pernod's blended Scotch whisky brand Ballantine's, who's marketing team came up with the idea a few years ago. An earlier prototype in 2012 managed to bring about 200,000 visitors to Ballantine's website and was featured in about 500 blogs. That prototype, however, was not very wearable, and came with a EUR14,000 (US$19,000) price tag. The new one is washable and scrunchable, and a comparative snip, at just EUR3,000!
What you won't find on the T-shirt, however, is the Ballantine's logo. Brand managers are aware a personalised message system is open to abuse and don't want the whisky associated with the questionable words and images that users will inevitably broadcast on their chests. Which rather raises the question, to what end is Pernod investing in this tech?
On Tuesday, I was told that the success of the earlier prototype in raising Ballantine's profile means the project can already be deemed a success. But why keep investing in something that doesn't appear to give anything back to the brand? Pernod doesn't even have rights to the technology - that belongs to Switch, with the French group merely owning the project's name, T-shirt OS.
Strange that a campaign that is all about delivering a message might not do the same for Pernod.
To read a comment piece on Pernod's innovation day, click here.
Would the thought of working in a morgue stop you from drink driving? ...
Heineken has unveiled a UK marketing campaign for John Smith's Golden Ale alongside football commentator and former Wales captain Robbie Savage....
You would be forgiven for thinking that the US cider boom is over. Sales growth of as much as 90% in the past few years has shrunk to double figures. ...
Almost two-thirds of US states have now banned powdered alcohol, as California moves closer to its own prohibition....
The drinks industry could do more to benefit from new technology. ...
The soft drinks world is abuzz today over what an executive shake-up at PepsiCo might mean to on-going speculation over CEO Indra Nooyi's successor....
- Brown-Forman's march on premium whisk(e)y -Comment
- Are consumers getting tired of consuming?
- Where does AB InBev see the future of beer?
- Will US consolidation leave craft alcohol exposed?
- SABMiller in Cent'l & E Europe - What is for sale?
- Brown-Forman to buy BenRiach Distillery Co
- Bacardi rolls out new global Martini ad - video
- Brown-Forman appoints new GTR marketing head
- AB InBev snaps up Italy's Birra del Borgo
- Smirnoff Ice Electric flavours - NPD
- Global Scotch whisky insights - market forecasts, product innovation and consumer trends
- Consumer and Market Insights: Wine Market in China
- Global non-Scotch whiskies insights - market forecasts, product innovation and consumer trends
- What Next for Beer and Brewers Following the MegaBrew Deal?
- Emerging Drinks Industry Trends