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Amway brand on the way back


Published :
Wed, 13 Jun 2007 17:48
By : Agencies
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GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (AP) - Quixtar is on its way out. Amway is on its way back.

Direct-sales giant Alticor Inc. confirmed Wednesday it will phase out its 7-year-old Quixtar Inc. label during the next 1 1/2 to two years and rebuild its Amway Corp. name in North America.

There also will be less use of the name Alticor, which represents a holding company.

U.S. employees received the news last week in an internal memo from company Chairman Steve Van Andel and President Doug DeVos, a copy of which was obtained by The Associated Press.

The Grand Rapids Press earlier reported on the memo.

'The realities of a crowded and competitive global marketplace have made us realize that we need to `fly one flag' to put significant resources behind establishing one opportunity brand wherever we do business,' the memo said. 'That brand will be Amway, in North America and all over the world.'

Although no public announcement was made, Ada-based Alticor confirmed the changes Wednesday. No jobs were expected to be eliminated as a result.

The public won't see the Amway name associated with the company's North American business for another 18 to 24 months, Van Andel and DeVos wrote.

'That's because this is -- this has to be -- more than just a name change,' the memo said. 'We want other key elements of the transformation initiative to be in place before we invite customers in to see the new Amway.'

The company dropped the Amway name in the United States and Canada in 2000 as part of an overhaul that took what had started as a door-to-door vitamin sales business into the world of online sales through Quixtar.

The move also was widely viewed as a way of helping the company shed some of the negative connotations the Amway name had acquired. The Quixtar name, however, never resonated with the public.

'Research has shown us that the Quixtar name is weaker and less known in the U.S. and Canada than we ever expected,' the memo said. 'Meanwhile, even eight years after leaving North America, the Amway name is stronger and better known than we realized.'

The Amway name has enjoyed a resurgence overseas as the company focused on expanding operations under that banner in Asia. Amway China last year accounted for more than $2 billion of Alticor's $6.3 billion in annual sales.

The Amway name began to re-emerge in the United States last year when the company bought the naming rights to the arena in which Amway co-founder Rich DeVos' Orlando Magic of the NBA play their home games.

Copyright 2007 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.




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