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Thread: Brands that are common around the world, but not the United States

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    Cyburbia Administrator Dan's avatar
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    Brands that are common around the world, but not the United States

    Those living in Southern Ontario stream down to Buffalo to engage in "cross-border shopping". The reasons are many, but the most commonly cited are lower prices and a wider variety of goods.

    Still, when I've taken trips to Toronto, I've noticed brands of products that are very common which are either unavailable in the US or else very rare. One that comes to mind are Bata sneakers; I've never seen them for sale in the US, but they're as common north of the border as ... oh, a second-tier brand like Adidas or Reebok in the US. It's a brand that is very international in scope, too, except for the US.

    Of course, there's Cuban cigars and other products that are unavailable in the US. Until a decade or so ago, Ikea stores were far less common in the US than in Canada and other Western nations, and they're still not very widespread here; they're mainly confined to the largest metropolitan areas, and along the coasts. Cities of a size that easily support one or more Ikea stores in Europe, Australia or Canada are Ikea-less here, and many will likely never see an Ikea. (Ikea representatives told officials from the City of Buffalo that they'll never open a store in the Buffalo area, period, even though they're in similarly sized or smaller metro areas elsewhere such as Hamilton and Adelaide.) Many vehicle brands are unavailable in the US; SEAT, Skoda, Peugeot, Renault, Citroen, Proton, Fiat, Lancia and many others.

    What other brands can you think of that have an international presence, but which are rare or nonexistent in the US?
    Growth for growth's sake is the ideology of the cancer cell. -- Edward Abbey

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    Cyburbian CJC's avatar
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    Carrefour. Second largest retailer in the world, all over Europe, Asia, north Africa, and South America, yet nary a one in the US. Some of their stores make Walmart Supercenters seem tiny.
    Two wrongs don't necessarily make a right, but three lefts do.

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    I can think of one: Milo chocolate drink. Americans would wonder why we're so caught up with it, and we would wonder why they can ever settle for the watery Nesquik.

    I don't recommend Proton even though it's our homegrown brand. We're only buying it because it costs half of a Toyota at 40K.

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    Chairman of the bored Maister's avatar
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    Slazenger sports equipment. Uncommon here, ubiquitous overseas.

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    Cyburbian mgk920's avatar
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    One word:

    Vegemite™



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    Cyburbian The One's avatar
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    well......

    I found a fantastic tie in England once that I've never been able to find again.....it was made and branded with a 3M tag. I've never seen anything labeled 3M here as a primary product name.
    Skilled Adoxographer

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    HP (House of Parliament) Sauces are big in all the former English outposts. We go to the local British store for our stock of HP Curry Sauce - which is good on absolutely everything.

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    Cyburbian wahday's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by prairiesheep View post
    I can think of one: Milo chocolate drink. Americans would wonder why we're so caught up with it, and we would wonder why they can ever settle for the watery Nesquik.
    I found this in New Mexico just a few weeks ago. It was a notable find for a our family because that's my son's name...

    When I was in Uganda, virtually everyone had a pair of Bata flip flops. http://www.bata.in/

    I was also struck by many of the vehicles. Many were reconditioned Nissans and Toyotas with models i had never heard of and some unusual designs.

    Here in New Mexico, you sometimes see car models from Mexico that were never released in the US (or that are using them as a test market).

    Other than what other hit on, noting comes to mind at the moment...
    The purpose of life is a life of purpose

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    Cyburbia Administrator Dan's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by CJC View post
    Carrefour. Second largest retailer in the world, all over Europe, Asia, north Africa, and South America, yet nary a one in the US. Some of their stores make Walmart Supercenters seem tiny.
    I think a French hypermarket chain (either Carrefour or Auchan) had several stores in the US at one time, but they were a dismal failure, and they pulled out of the US.

    Nando's is a South African fast food chicken chain that is seemingly everywhere except the United States.

    Here in Austin, I'll see the occasional Peugeot or SEAT on the road, always with Mexican plates. There's was similar phenomenon in Buffalo, when car brands that were available in Canada but not the US (Lada, Innocenti, Azuna, and at one time, Hyndai) would be seen south of the border. Spotting a Lada Niva in the parking lot at Boulevard Mall wasn;t out of the ordinary for a while in the 1980s. Odd, for the largest auto consumer market in the world, there seems to be a much smaller variety of car brands available in the US compared to other countries.
    Growth for growth's sake is the ideology of the cancer cell. -- Edward Abbey

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    Super Moderator kjel's avatar
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    In my tour of Asia there were a ton of foodstuffs produced by Nestlé. Here usually they are only visibly associated with candy, Nescafe, and Nesquik although they have a considerable portfolio of well known brands.
    "He defended the cause of the poor and needy, and so all went well. Is that not what it means to know me?" Jeremiah 22:16

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    Cyburbian natski's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by kjelsadek View post
    In my tour of Asia there were a ton of foodstuffs produced by Nestlé. Here usually they are only visibly associated with candy, Nescafe, and Nesquik although they have a considerable portfolio of well known brands.
    We have a ton of Nestle food here- in fact they produce Milo- which is tasty and great to put on your icecream too!
    "Have you ever wondered if there was more to life, other than being really, really, ridiculously good looking?" Zoolander

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    Cyburbian Woolley's avatar
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    In Australia:

    Aeroplane Jelly, Bonds (clothing), Bubble O' Bill, Chiko Roll, Clag (glue), Coon cheese, Dickheads, Nobby's, Tiny Teddy, Tim Tam, Mambo Graphics, Breville, Esky, Wizz Fizz, Golden Gaytime, XXXX, Uncle Tobys, Lolly Gobble Bliss Bombs, Berlei, Aerogard, Snappy Tom, Samboy, R. M. Williams, Kirks (Softdrinks), Mother (energy drink)

    quite a few are products not brands but hey I am sticking with it
    We architects and urban planners aren't the visible symbols of oppression, like the military or the police. We're more sophisticated, more educated, and more socially conscious. We're the soft cops.- Robert Goodman, After the Planners My Planning Forumino

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    Cyburbia Administrator Dan's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by Woolley View post
    Aeroplane Jelly, Bonds (clothing), Bubble O' Bill, Chiko Roll, Clag (glue), Coon cheese, Dickheads, Nobby's, Tiny Teddy, Tim Tam, Mambo Graphics, Breville, Esky, Wizz Fizz, Golden Gaytime, XXXX, Uncle Tobys, Lolly Gobble Bliss Bombs, Berlei, Aerogard, Snappy Tom, Samboy, R. M. Williams, Kirks (Softdrinks), Mother (energy drink)
    I've bolded those brands that would probably be met in the market place wither with laughter, protests at corporate headquarters, or just a general "what the fug?" from consumers.
    • Coon: racial epithet
    • Dickhead: obvious
    • Wizz: slang for urine or unination in Amercan English
    • Golden Gaytime: obvious (SFW, maybe)
    • Samboy: sounds too similar to "Sambo", which many consider a racial epithet. The inclusion of the word "boy" in the word doesn't help, given the perceived context.

    Also, any product named "[something] Tom" will probably not land in the shopping carts of African-Americans.
    Growth for growth's sake is the ideology of the cancer cell. -- Edward Abbey

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    Cyburbian Woolley's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by Dan View post
    I've bolded those brands that would probably be met in the market place wither with laughter, protests at corporate headquarters, or just a general "what the fug?" from consumers.
    • Coon: racial epithet
    • Dickhead: obvious
    • Wizz: slang for urine or unination in Amercan English
    • Golden Gaytime: obvious (SFW, maybe)
    • Samboy: sounds too similar to "Sambo", which many consider a racial epithet. The inclusion of the word "boy" in the word doesn't help, given the perceived context.

    Also, any product named "[something] Tom" will probably not land in the shopping carts of African-Americans.
    Yeah, DickHeads were Dick Smiths (kind of like Bill Gates) line of matches. Obviously taken from the brand "RedHeads". And there was a bit of an issue a few years back with Coon Cheese. Btw Golden Gaytimes are delicious
    We architects and urban planners aren't the visible symbols of oppression, like the military or the police. We're more sophisticated, more educated, and more socially conscious. We're the soft cops.- Robert Goodman, After the Planners My Planning Forumino

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    Cyburbian rcgplanner's avatar
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    Umbro, the British sportswear and equipment manufacturer.

    Umbro, had a factory in Greenville, SC until it closed in 1998. The site was later developed into a shopping complex called Cherrydale Point.

    I remember going to their factory store when I was in elementary and middle school to get the discounted bright shorts for soccer practice. Almost everyone I knew in the early to mid 90's had at least one item from Umbro. They exited the US market in the late 90's. They have retained their popularity overseas, especially in the UK.

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    Cyburbian Rygor's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by rcgplanner View post
    Umbro, the British sportswear and equipment manufacturer.

    Umbro, had a factory in Greenville, SC until it closed in 1998. The site was later developed into a shopping complex called Cherrydale Point.

    I remember going to their factory store when I was in elementary and middle school to get the discounted bright shorts for soccer practice. Almost everyone I knew in the early to mid 90's had at least one item from Umbro. They exited the US market in the late 90's. They have retained their popularity overseas, especially in the UK.
    On a similar note, whatever happened to formerly popular brands like "Benetton" and "Stussy" and "Z Cavaricci"?

    Another brand not often seen in the US but popular in other countries: "Weetabix"

    Also "Esso" petroleum, and "Vodafone" cellular.
    "When life gives you lemons, just say 'No thanks'." - Henry Rollins

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    Cyburbian CJC's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by Rygor View post
    On a similar note, whatever happened to formerly popular brands like "Benetton" and "Stussy" and "Z Cavaricci"?
    There are still some Benetton stores in the US, mostly in higher end shopping areas (my dentist's office is above one), but they have certainly decreased.

    Also "Esso" petroleum, and "Vodafone" cellular.
    Well, these are on purpose. Esso is just an Exxon brand used in other areas, and Vodafone owns 45% of Verizon Wireless (the name Verizon was used in part because the US company Verizon Communications owns a majority share, and in part because Verizon already had established brand presence in the US).
    Two wrongs don't necessarily make a right, but three lefts do.

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    Cyburbian natski's avatar
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    We still have Stussy here- although the brand is not as popular as it once was, but in saying that i am wearing a stussy top today, that i purchased over the weekend- because is was $25.

    Weetbix is very popular over- i always thought it was an Australian brand?

    Umbro is a big 'soccer' sportswear brand here.

    We dont have Esso Petrol, but im sure they own some other big name here.
    "Have you ever wondered if there was more to life, other than being really, really, ridiculously good looking?" Zoolander

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    Cyburbian Woolley's avatar
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    You will love this pretty popular these were growing up. I swear to god these existed too. Basically lollies (or candy as you Americans like to call it) sticks with red at the end. Supposed to resemble a cigarette.



    I guess us Aus and Eng people still use this saying http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fag
    We architects and urban planners aren't the visible symbols of oppression, like the military or the police. We're more sophisticated, more educated, and more socially conscious. We're the soft cops.- Robert Goodman, After the Planners My Planning Forumino

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