Breakfast Briefing: 5 things for PR pros to know on Wednesday morning

Quaker Oats rebrands Aunt Jemima; Apple D&I chief leaves company; Facebook lets users turn off political ads.

New this morning: Quaker Oats said it is rebranding the Aunt Jemima pancake mix and syrup line, acknowledging that “Aunt Jemima’s origins are based on a racial stereotype,” according to NBC News. The company also pledged to donate $5 million over the next five years “to create meaningful, ongoing support and engagement in the black community.” 

Apple’s head of diversity and inclusion is leaving, according to Bloomberg. Christie Smith did not report directly to CEO Tim Cook as her predecessor did, instead reporting to SVP of retail and people Deirdre O’Brien, according to Fortune. Cook said last week that Apple will back a racial equity and justice initiative with a $100 million commitment, according to cnet.

Facebook is launching a push to get Americans to register to vote with the goal of getting 4 million to sign up to go to the polls in November, CEO Mark Zuckerberg said in an op-ed in USA Today. Buried all the way at the end of the guest column: Facebook will also allow users to turn off campaign ads they don’t like, a decision that will help the company play both sides of the fence in the debate over political advertising on social media, according to The New York Times’ Mike Isaac. The move comes amid employee outrage at Facebook over the company’s stance on misleading political ads and posts. 

BCW has named a new China CEO. Qu Hong will take on the position in addition to his current role as market leader for BCW Beijing and report to APAC president Matt Stafford. Qu is in his second stint at BCW, returning in 2017 after working for Weber Shandwick and Edelman. 

Get to know Team Epiphany. The firm not only doubled down and found deeper relationships with retained clients in 2019, it also posted a 23% increase in revenue to $32.2 million, according to PRWeek’s Agency Business Report. Audi of America also brought on the firm for cultural relevance and influencer work this January. 

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