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Schweppes Novida unveiled in Nigeria

BUSINESS
Schweppes Novida Pineapple, a product of the Coca-Cola Company was recently launched in Lagos on 15th December 2017 amid fanfare. The brand threw an extravagant, classy black carpet party headlined by music crooner DBanj, which also had performances from Ayo Drums and very lively, classic tunes from Godwin the violinist. The new variant of Schweppes is a fruity flavoured Non-alcoholic malt beverage. According to the brand handlers, Novida means New Life in Portuguese. Gbolahan Sanni, Marketing Manager, Still and Flavours Beverages, Coca-Cola Nigeria Limited, said that the introduction of Novida into the Nigerian market is part of a global strategic move to meet the ever-changing consumer demands and taste preferences. “Around the world, Coca-Cola is aware that consumer demands and tastes a

Russia’s dysfunctional funeral business gets a makeover

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Stiffer competition is comingTHE calls began shortly after Yulia’s grandmother died. The undertaker offered help arranging the funeral, for 47,000 roubles ($800) in cash. She then travelled to Moscow’s Khovanskoe Cemetery, where she was offered a discount on a gravesite—150,000 roubles off—if she could bring cash within three hours and sign a receipt saying she had paid half that amount. Yulia (whose name has been changed) and her family gave in. “We knew we were paying a bribe, but what else could we do?”To bury a loved one in Russia often means entering an underworld of corruption and red tape. The myriad goods and services needed, from preparing the body for burial to funeral arrangements to carving a headstone, all represent opportunities for extortion in a largely informal market. “In

Combustible cigarettes kill millions a year. Can Big Tobacco save them?

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BESIDE a serene lake in Switzerland sits a modern glass building called the Cube. Wide-leafed tobacco plants grow in the lobby. In one room machines that can “smoke” more than a dozen cigarettes at a time dutifully puff away, measuring the chemicals that consumers would inhale. The research centre is run by Philip Morris International (PMI), which sells Marlboro and other brands around the world. The facility’s purpose is not to assess the risks of smoking, but to determine whether this huge cigarette-maker might get out of selling cigarettes altogether.André Calantzopoulos, PMI’s chief executive, talks about moving to a “smoke-free future”, with the firm’s business comprised entirely of alternatives to cigarettes. “We are crystal clear where we are going as a company: we want to move out

An experiment with in-home deliveries is under way

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AFTER staying at home one afternoon for a delivery of discounted toilet disinfectant that never came, Valentin Romanov, a Stockholm IT manager, installed a special lock on his flat’s entrance. When no one is in, deliverymen unlock the door and slip packages inside. Four months on, Mr Romanov has doubled his spending online and says he cannot imagine life without in-home deliveries. These are sweet words for delivery firms and online retailers, Amazon included, that are setting up partnerships with lock manufacturers to overcome a big hurdle for e-commerce.Conventional deliveries fail so often that a parcel is driven to a home an average of 1.5 times in the Nordic region, says Kenneth Verlage, head of business development at PostNord, a logistics giant operating in Denmark, Finland, Norway

A vote on “net neutrality” has intensified a battle over the internet’s future

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A DAY before the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) voted to rescind “net neutrality” regulations designed to ensure that internet-service providers do nothing to favour some types of online content over others, Ajit Pai, its chairman, tweeted a short video reassuring Americans. “You can still post photos of cute animals,” he says in it, posing with a dog. He also wields a light sabre, which prompted Mark Hamill, the actor who portrays Luke Skywalker in the “Star Wars” films, to criticise Mr Pai on Twitter for siding with giant corporations. Ted Cruz, a Republican senator, then asserted in Mr Pai’s defence that Darth Vader supported government regulation of the web; further jabs followed.It made for a silly treatment of an arcane subject. But net neutrality is a serious business. The