Saturday, October 28, 2006

Diva Update

Business Week looks at the reinvention of Martha Stewart:

Stewart, naturally, prefers not to talk about what the company would be like without her. At first, she will only express the hope that her name will have the longevity of Coco Chanel's or Walt Disney's. When pressed, she does say that "if I played a lesser role, the company could still do extremely well."At 65, though, she considers that prospect to be far off. She has no intention of pulling back her looming presence over the brand. She saw the damage that downplaying the Martha Stewart name caused for her company during "the legal problems," and she won't let that happen again. "I never agreed with that strategy because I believed in myself," says Stewart. The goal now is to take her brand as far as it will go and return her company to profitability (it hasn't made money since 2002 and in 2005 lost $76 million). "It's not like I'm an absentee founder, holed up in my ch√Ęteau in France," she laughs. "I'm working every day."

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