Tuesday, February 14, 2006

Oh Honestly!

Today's Australian Financial Review ("Trouble brews for rival brands") reports that Honest Tea (Australia) has been portrayed by the NSW Small Business Minister, David Campbell, as a "big American corporation" threatening "the little guy." The remark has to do with Honest Tea's concern about an Australian rival's (Springleaf Tea) use of the domain name honesttea.com.au to promote their own product.

Now I don't know any more about the dispute than is contained in the press but I do know that Honest Tea is not only not a big corporation but is, in fact, the very epitomy of small, entrepreneurial firm competing with big corporations -- American and otherwise. The fact that they are in a position to export to Australia is a testament to what smaller businesses can do. They do not deserve the scorn of Ministers there to protect small business interests.

[Interest Disclaimer: Professor Barry Nalebuff, Honest Tea's founder and Chair, has visited Melbourne Business School on several occasions and his book Coopetition is required reading for MBAs. We both serve as advisors to Rismark International. Steve Hibbard works at Melbourne Business School. All views here are my own.]


Anonymous said...

Will this be on the exam.... multiple choice or open ended??

Joshua Gans said...

Yes. Quantitative.