Compiled by Patrick Avenell

Virgin Mobile has trotted out one of those surveys that conveniently promotes its new mobile phone plans. According to this survey of more than 1,000 Australians, 89 per cent of respondents consider ‘a fair go’ to be part of Australia’s DNA. This would also indicate that 89 per cent of Australians don’t know much about biology.

That leads nicely in Virgin Mobile’s new Fair Go Plans, of which there are two options, said marketing director David Scribner.

“Kicking off with the launch of two new, simpler sets of plans today, we intend to revisit the way we do things, from product offerings through to contractual arrangements and member service channels,” he said.

At the top end of these Fair Go plans, Virgin Mobile offers the $89 Topless plan, which includes unlimited monthly calls and texts, 4GB data and free voicemail, though there are tonnes of terms and conditions, so this should only be taken as a guide.

Panasonic Australia has reported strong winter sales of its inverter air conditioners, which come after a successful summer since the launch in late 2010.

“Panasonic is delighted with its success this summer,” beamed product marketing manager Shane Quinn. “We were the leader throughout the December 2010 to February 2011 period even without heatwave temperatures on the East Coast.

“As temperatures continue to drop across the country, this achievement puts Panasonic in a strong position for the cooler months.”

iPhone users looking to purchase a new air conditioner should check out Pana’s free app, which is a very novel way of helping to push through sales and communicating with young consumers.

Kambrook has reported some very strong sales growth figures in the electric blanket category. This market has traditionally been completely dominated by Sunbeam.

According to marketing manager Adam Tacey, Kambrook has grown almost 38 per cent in units and almost 28 per cent in value over the last 12 months (Kambrook cites GfK MAT May 2011).

“We are definitely one of the most trusted brands in heating — from our heaters to our blankets,” chirped Tacey.

“The new market share reports show that consumers put durability and value for money at the top of their shopping list.  We’re producing goods that have gone through rigorous testing which gives consumers peace of mind, but they also hit a price point that consumers find attractive.”

Click here to sign up for our FREE daily newsletter

Kambrook brand mate Breville is also happy with recent GfK statistics, with general marketing manager Scott Brady reporting a 12 per cent growth in value in the Food Preparation category (Breville cites GfK Food Preparation May 2011).

“The popularity of food preparation products is on the rise and at Breville we’re determined to keep on solving the core challenges consumers face in the kitchen,” Brady said.

“Our latest category innovations include the Scraper Mixer Pro with its unique scraper beater, the Kitchen Wizz Pro with the variable slicing disc and completely sealed bowl and the Control Grip stick mixers, which reduce suction when blending.

“With a considered approach to improving category value, we have created premium products for which consumers are willing to pay a premium.”

Also on today:

TEAC has a new STB/PVR with DVD
Panasonic’s outgoing director talks fierce competition
Online isn’t to blame for retail slowdown