American Business Media has released its year-end 2007 Business Information Network (BIN) numbers, the metrics that track advertising spending by category in b-to-b media. Totals show an overall revenue decline of 2 percent—not a strong finish in the face of a decidedly gloomy 2008 economy. And this after essentially finishing flat at the end of 2006. Among the 21 categories tracked, the steepest revenue declines were computing, software, telecom (-17.59 percent); business, advertising & marketing (-10.7 percent); and travel, business conventions & meetings (-6.95 percent).The top three gainers were resources, environment, utilities (12.72 percent); architecture, design, lighting (10.49 percent); and science, research and development (10.11 percent). A total of 13 categories showed revenue increases, but 9 of those were below 5 percent and many of those categories saw corresponding drops in page counts. Total spending across all categories for the year was $10.72 billion—down from year-end 2006 total spending of $10.94 billion.The total number of ad pages were also down 3.35 percent. The numbers erase a flat 2006, where the fourth quarter of that year wiped out decent gains through the third quarter. The year concluded with a 0.61 percent revenue “gain” over 2005. All hope now seems to rest on the revenues to be made in ancillary businesses such as e-media and events. ABM president and CEO Gordon Hughes emphasized these segments when he noted “continued industry growth” in a statement accompanying the results, pointing out that digital business has been growing “in excess” of 20 percent. ABM’s T-BIN numbers, which track trade show activity, recorded a 6.60 percent increase in revenues over 2006. ABM attempted to put a good face on the print results, going so far to suggest “ignoring” the computer, software, telecom category—the report’s top decliner. “In fact, ignoring the ‘Computing, Software, Telecom’ category would result in an overall 0 [percent] change over 2006,” contends ABM’s analysis. This of course begs the question of whether the rest of the declining categories should also be ignored.
Volkswagen builds pickups like the Amarok and Saveiro for other countries, but sadly, it has no official plans to bring a pickup truck to the US. If you look at what the German automaker has been up to lately, however, it certainly seems like VW is very interested in entering the market.At last year’s New York Auto Show, VW showed off its definitely-not-for-production Atlas Tanoak concept — basically its Atlas midsize SUV, but with a pickup bed out back.This year, the automaker has brought its smaller Tarok pickup (based on the MQB platform that also underpins the Volkswagen Golf and Jetta), which looks a lot closer to production, but, unfortunately, is also just a concept. Scott Keogh, Volkswagen Group of America’s CEO, revealed some insights about how a small pickup might work in the US during a Wednesday media roundtable session I attended at the NY Auto Show.”I think we can comment with an extremely, let’s say, smart price point,” Keogh said. “I don’t want to, you know, start to give away price points, but I think you could put a vehicle like that in the marketplace in, let’s say, the mid-20s with proper engine, proper everything.”Again, VW hasn’t committed to a US truck, and Keogh cautions that the company’s investigation into the idea is “all early days,” but clearly it’s putting a lot of thought into the idea. Further, its new truck and van partnership with Ford could help facilitate its developing such models more quickly and less expensively. Still, the thought of a capable, well-equipped small pickup for not a lot of money could resonate in a US market that once bought hundreds of thousands of compact pickups.Enlarge ImageA production version of the Tarok trucklet would be sweet, especially if consumers got some of this concept’s delicious interior cues. Steven Pham/Roadshow “I do see an opportunity where these trucks have all moved into the 50s and the 60s [pricing] and beyond,” Keogh added, alluding to the escalating price of full-size pickups. “That is the price of an expensive luxury car, not a normal luxury car, and I think there is an opportunity because people do need these vehicles, and I think Volkswagen’s always made cars for people who need vehicles. You know, they have families, they need safety, they need things, so you have to hit a good price point, and I think we can.”A small VW pickup could have another party trick: fuel economy. “Depending on what drivetrain we put in there, you could also get phenomenal fuel economy out of that thing,” Keogh said. A fuel-sipping trucklet would certainly stand out amid a US pickup market loaded with full-size rigs that struggle to get combined miles per gallon ratings in the high teens. Sure, there are efficient midsize trucks in the American market like the Chevy Colorado Duramax diesel at 20 miles per gallon in the city, 30 mpg highway and 23 mpg combined, but that starts at $37,675. If VW could pull off an affordable compact pickup that gets mid-20s combined fuel economy, but for around 10 grand less, that might just provide enough of a business case to build one.VW may also have some small-truck competition in the pipeline, too. Ford recently confirmed that it’s planning a sub-Ranger-sized pickup, but the jury’s out on whether the mini truck will make it to America. In addition, Hyundai is planning on bringing its small Santa Cruz pickup truck to the US “as soon as possible.” May 29 • 2020 Ford Escape: Everything there is to know 2019 Volkswagen Arteon first drive: Flagship fastback feels familiar More From Roadshow Tags New York Auto Show 2019 Volkswagen reading • Volkswagen’s US CEO says around $25,000 would be a smart price for a small pickup Share your voice New York Auto Show 2019 Comments 24 Photos 2019 Mazda CX-9 review: Losing its edge? VW Atlas Tanoak pickup is still a hard maybe Apr 19 • Acura MDX PMC Edition is a hand-assembled SUV in brilliant red paint 3 VW Tarok pickup concept is in New York to gauge your reaction 2019 Honda Ridgeline review: Light duty, heavy punch Apr 19 • Check out the gory details in Honda’s IIHS crash-tested HR-V 46 Photos • Volkswagen Car Industry Trucks Concept Cars Future Cars See All
00:00 /00:00 X Listen Share UPDATE 5/11/2017 4:41 p.m.: Federal Judge Lee Rosenthal issued new instructions Wednesday for Harris County Sheriff Ed Gonzalez to make changes to the county’s bail system starting on Monday, May 15. The sheriff says he supports the changes and is ready to enact them, which could mean the release of hundreds of misdemeanor defendants from jail.However, Harris County Commissioners are still appealing the judge’s ruling that the bail system is unconstitutional.PREVIOUSLY: U.S. District Judge Lee Rosenthal says the county’s bail system violates the Constitution by jailing those who cannot afford bail. District Attorney Kim Ogg agrees with the judge’s viewpoint. “We should not be incarcerating people on low-level offenses before they’ve been convicted of anything simply because they don’t have the money to bond out. Conversely, I hate the practice that our judges currently employ of releasing even dangerous defendants when they can make bail.” Ogg says the practice has been to follow a bail schedule crafted heavily by the bail industry. But she says decisions need to be based on risk to public safety. Harris County Sheriff Ed Gonzalez wants a delay implementing the ruling. Robert Soard with the Harris County Attorney’s office says the jail processes 130,000 people each year. “We’re talking about huge numbers, huge volumes. That’s one reason, I think, that the sheriff has had to ask for additional time. The system is incredibly complex with lots and lots of different people.” Soard says the issue seems to be over the 5 to 10 percent who are high-risk and the procedure for dealing with them. The Harris County Commissioners were asking for a delay to allow more time to craft a new bail system. To embed this piece of audio in your site, please use this code: