A presentation of the Electric Shaver Page.
January 23--A new shaver review site has been added in the "Other" section, shaverauthority.com
November 23--Yes, I've been neglecting this web site because my other interests, such as writing a local interest book which was published last month, have been occupying my time. By request, I added TotalVac to the list of shops on line. You may have noticed that ShaverOutlet.com as a sponsored link. Their banner is on the very top.
February 18--In my first new URL listing for 2010, the "other" section has the Electric Shaver Guide with reviews of electric shavers.
August 20--There is a new electric shaver message board called the Electric Shaver Forum and that is the new home for Tell Mr. Steel Beard. So check them out.
August 2--Rahman Jones, a follower of this web site, has a new product called Vantiguard and has pointed out a YouTube video at http://www.youtube.com/results?search_query=vanitiguard&search_type=&aq=f You can also go to YouTube and do a search on "Vantiguard" then view the video. The Survey Page questions this time out are devoted to this product.
June 2--I finally updated the Survey Page questions. Note the special question about Remington shavers considering the financial problems its parent company Spectrum Brands is having.
April 5--By request, I've added DiscountShaver.com to the list of shaver shops online. While not technically a shaver shop, the site is dedicated to helping people find shavers at the best price possible through eBay.
March 1--Yes, I am busy with other things so this web site has been neglected. I didn't update the Survey Page questions for February. So I decided to update the questions every other month. The March/April questions are now up.
January 7--I must admit that I've been neglecting the shaver web site, but I got too many other projects going on. But with the first Tell Mr. Steel Beard posting for 2009, I've archived the 2008 postings, wiped the slate clean and started the 2009 page.
June 10--I've added Axis shavers to the list of shaver companies on line. Their URL is http://www.axisshavers.com
March 3--I decided to let Electric Razor Rap participants decide what Survey Page questions to ask for March and the questions are now up.
February 5--Because only four replies were received for last month's Survey Page, I've decided to post questions again asking if these questions are worth posting. Also, I was informed that the link to Electric Shaver Service of Virginia is dead so I deleted it.
January 3--I have uploaded the final Tell Mr. Steel Beard posting for 2007. So when I work on the first 2008 postings, I'll start a new Tell Mr. Steel Beard page for 2008.
January 1--Happy New Year! The January Survey Page questions are up and are the annual post-holidays questions about the shaver gift you received. The final Tell Mr. Steel Beard questions have been submitted so after I finish answering those, I will close the 2007 page and start the 2008 page.
November 28--I finally got around to updating the minipolls one last time before closing most of the questions to allow for the construction of new minipoll questions with an updated choice of shaver models. The December Survey Page will feature the annual gift giving or receiving questions.
November 15--The sponsored link banners are now repaired and I encourage online shoppers to check out these links and make your online purchases through the links as they help support this web site.
November 1--The November Survey Page questions ask those who compared the new Philips Arcitec and Braun Pulsonic with their respective predecessor high-end models. Because I've been pretty busy with other projects, I've been skipping the reporting of quarterly results with the major publicly held shaver companies or their parent companies. Should I report shaver company results here?
October 4--I finally got around to posting the October Survey Page questions which are skewed towards those with rechargeable shavers. I received a request from Ningbo True Man Electric Co.,Ltd. in China to put their web site in the shaver company page. So I did. They are at http://www.cntrueman.com/home-e.asp
September 2--The September Survey Page questions were all received by suggestion from the Electric Razor Rap message board. Remington is introducing yet another new model, the Code which is aimed at young men and has a provocative new campaign to promote this shaver. You can see what I mean at http://www.getthecode.com
August 7--Remington shaver maker Spectrum Brands released their quarterly results. Remington branded products enjoyed gains of 8 percent driven by market share gains in Latin America and Europe. More details at http://phx.corporate-ir.net/phoenix.zhtml?c=75225&p=irol-newsArticle&ID=1037355&highlight=
August 6--Braun parent Procter & Gamble released its April-June quarterly results. Braun's results were mixed, but their shavers did well. You can read the full report at http://www.pginvestor.com/phoenix.zhtml?c=104574&p=irol-newsArticleMain&ID=1036344
August 1--Philips' Second Quarter results show their DAP unit did very well with double-digit growth in their shaver business. Info at http://www.quarterlyresults.philips.com/files/presentation_2Q07.pdf?Int_origin=Q22007 and look under DAP which is their Domestic Appliances and Personal Care unit. The shaver gallery has been updated to include new models. The August Survey Page is the annual list of questions about new shaver models as we have a bumper crop of new shaver introductions from all four major shaver brands, Philips, Braun, Remington and Panasonic/National.
July 1--The July Survey Page questions are inspired by a news release from Remington Shaver maker Spectrum Brands. Remington is introducing a shaver which uses disposable heads. The news release is at http://phx.corporate-ir.net/phoenix.zhtml?c=75225&p=irol-newsArticle&ID=1020192
June 19--By request, I've added Stoney's Shave-O-Rama to the list of shaver shops on line. They are at http://stoneys-shaveorama.com/index.html
June 1-- For the June Survey Page, I decided to ask questions about the radically different new Philips Arcitec line of shavers.
May 27--I've updated the Shaver Gallery to include the new Philips Arcitec RQ1090 shaver to be introduced later this year. Also, shaver industry news is report as Remington shaver maker Spectrum Brands has a new CEO, Kent Hussey. Info at http://phx.corporate-ir.net/phoenix.zhtml?c=75225&p=irol-newsArticle&ID=1006247&highlight=
May 10--Remington shaver maker Spectrum Brands reported its fiscal Second Quarter 2007 results. Sales of Remington branded products increased 3.4 percent. For more details, see http://phx.corporate-ir.net/phoenix.zhtml?c=75225&p=irol-newsArticle&ID=998534
May 9--Shaver industry news to report as well as a milestone for Philips:
May 9, 2007
PHILIPS SHAVERS CELEBRATES PRODUCING HALF A BILLION ELECTRIC SHAVERS
Amsterdam, The Netherlands Philips Shavers today announced it has produced its 500 millionth electric shaver. Philips Shavers, the world leader in the electric shaving category, has 68 years of heritage in developing world-class shavers and also owns the accolade of inventing rotary shaving. As part of Philips Domestic Appliances and Personal Care division, Philips Shavers are sold internationally in over 56 countries and are found in bathrooms from Sweden to Argentina, from the west coast of America to the far edges of Russia.
Global market leader in electric shavers
Andrea Ragnetti, CEO of Philips Domestic Appliances and Personal Care, and Chief Marketing Officer of Royal Philips Electronics commented, We are the market leader in the electric shaver category, year after year. To have reached this milestone cements the fact that we are bringing products to market which consistently meet our consumers needs. Philips technology has been advancing and simplifying peoples lives since 1891. Philips pioneered major breakthroughs in medical imaging, television, lighting, as well as being the inventors of rotary shaving. From a company with such high standards in product development, it is no surprise that Philips Shavers have gone from strength to strength over the last 68 years. If someone is going to buy an electric shaver, we want them to think of Philips first. To have sold this many shavers in our 68 year history shows us were on the right track, Andrea Ragnetti concluded.
Producing a shaving range to keep consumers interested
Producing a shaver range to excite consumers and trade partners is key to the success of the business. In 1939, Philips launched its first electric shaver, The Cigar, to the world. Men were invited to experience the latest in technological wizardry - the electric shaver with rotary action. In 1959, to keep up with the explosion in consumer demand, revolutionary new technologies such as floating shaving heads were introduced and in 1978 the worlds first mains and rechargeable shaver was launched. Philips has consistently set new standards in the shaving category. Nico Engelsman, Business Manager Shaving and Senior Vice President Philips DAP said, Over the last six decades, we have addressed the changing needs of our consumer, taking regional differences into account. We are also constantly addressing innovation in the shaver itself. We are focused on developing shavers that are designed to suit the places they are sold. We produce shavers that reflect local tastes, trends, bathrooms and shaving habits, and thats why I think weve been so successful.
The current most popular selling Philips shaver is the HQ 8140 model retailing at USD 89.99 or Euro 129.99. Philips Shavers have always been a driver for category growth. In 2006, the Philips Shavers business in Europe and Asia increased between 4% and 11% in value, while in North America Philips Shavers grew its business by more than 10%.
A major reason for this growth is that an innovative product stimulates market development. Though the market is highly competitive, Philips Shavers market share increased by more than 2%* since the introduction in 2005 of two shaver ranges - SmartTouch-XL and Speed-XL.
In 2006 Philips Shavers designed a shaving range with the AT&T Williams Formula One engineering and design team which was sold in more than 20 key markets around the world.
Looking into the future
In order to consistently attract new customers, Philips creates shavers that break away from our competitors in terms of performance and design. According to Nico Engelsman, By presenting the market with something innovative, youll be able to attract new consumers. We are looking to translate global trends into products in the very near future. DAP demonstrated its value to Philips, with 17% comparable growth in the first quarter earnings for 2007. Philips Shavers remain an important part of the DAP business, representing approximately 45% of DAPs sales.
*(in value in absolute terms)
May 1--The May Survey Page questions repeat the February 2004 questions asking if shavers are purchased by price alone. Braun parent Procter & Gamble released its fiscal 3rd Quarter 2007 results. In summary, it states that Braun's organic volume increased in mid-single digits thanks to the successful 360 Complete, Pulsonic and Contour shavers. More info at http://www.pginvestor.com/phoenix.zhtml?c=104574&p=irol-newsArticle&ID=993331&highlight=
April 5--I'm back and there is quite a backlog of E-mails including Tell Mr. Steel Beard submissions to go through. It's going to take me several days to go through the backlog so please be patient. I've posted the April Survey Page which turns inward as I've received a measly four replies to last month's Survey Page. So this month I'm asking if you follow these postings, whether you participate on a regular basis and should I continue to post the monthly Survey Page questions.
March 27--I will be away from the computer for the next few days so after I answer the backlog of E-mails, I will not be doing any updates or answering E-mails until around April 4. This means that the Survey Page questions for April will also not be up until that time. Sorry for the inconvenience.
March 1--For the March Survey Page questions, I will ask about the shaver companies' customer service departments and web sites. I last asked these questions on April 2004. One change in the questions is on the web sites. Back in 2004, the Philishave and Norelco shaver web sites were different enough to be listed separately. Now the Philips and Philips Norelco shaver web sites are identical so they will not be listed separately so the choices will be Philips (Norelco), Braun, Remington, Panasonic/National, Grundig, Wahl and other.
February 15--This is my first update with the new computer. Thanks for your patience. In the meantime, Remington shaver maker Spectrum Brands released their fiscal First Quarter 2007 results on February 8 which were mixed for Remington, with a disappointing showing in North America, but a nice performance in Europe. You can read the details at http://phx.corporate-ir.net/phoenix.zhtml?c=75225&p=irol-newsArticle&ID=960514
February 4--I'm getting a new computer with Windows Vista this week to replace my six or seven year old computer with Windows Me. I'll be transferring all the files from the old computer to the new one and reinstalling or replacing software to read the old files. I'm all caught up on the E-mail backlog so I'll be taking a break from maintaining this web site while I get the new computer up and running.
February 1--The February Survey Page questions are for those who maintain facial hair. The shaver company financial reports are coming out. Philips was the first to report and their shaver making DAP unit did very well with sales up 13% compared to the previous 4th Quarter. Details at http://www.newscenter.philips.com/About/News/article-15611.html As for Braun parent Procter & Gamble, the Braun unit's sales were up 5% compared to the previous October-December quarter. Details at http://www.pginvestor.com/phoenix.zhtml?c=104574&p=irol-newsArticle&ID=955568&highlight= The Spectrum Brands (Remington) quarterly results will be released on February 8.
January 1--Happy New Year! The January Survey Page questions is the follow-up for those who received a shaver as a gift. I've received the first Tell Mr. Steel Beard posting for January. So when I finish answering the last of the 2006 questions, I will archive the 2006 Tell Mr. Steel Beard page, wipe the slate clean and start a new Tell Mr. Steel Beard page for 2007.
December 13--I received an E-mail from Shanghai Dingling Electric Appliances Co. Ltd in China so I added that company to the list of shaver companies on line. Their URL is http://www.dingling.cn/eng/intro.htm
December 3--I finally got around to posting the Survey Page questions for December which are the annual shaver preference questions for the holiday gift giving season.
November 20--I finally updated the Minipoll questions. Because of product name variations in some countries, I'm using series numbers more instead of names for some of the product lines. Shaver industry news from Remington shaver maker Spectrum Brands and the news is mixed for Remington for the fiscal Fourth Quarter and Fiscal Year-end 2006 results.. They did OK in Europe and Latin America, but so-so in the USA. With the new models now available of which I hearing positive feedback, I expect Remington to do better next quarter. You can read more at http://phx.corporate-ir.net/phoenix.zhtml?c=75225&p=irol-newsArticle&ID=930774 Finally, the peak time for shaver sales is here and I've fallen behind in answering E-mails and Tell Mr. Steel Beard submissions so please be patient.
November 12--After one final update, I closed the model-specific Minipoll questions to prepare for a complete update to reflect the new models now available.
November 1--I have a lot to talk about here. First, the November Survey Page questions this month are about "cheap" electric shavers. They include the Titanium Turbo battery operated shaver you may have seen on TV which I happen to possess. Braun's parent company Procter & Gamble issued its quarterly report. About Braun, it states: "In Braun, sales increased double-digits behind successful new product launches in key markets across the globe. The launch of 360 Complete and Contour razors in North America and of Pulsonic razors in Germany more than offset softness in Western European household appliances." Details at http://www.pginvestor.com/phoenix.zhtml?c=104574&p=irol-newsArticleMain&ID=923794 While Panasonic's parent company Matsushita issued its quarterly report, the shaver making Matsushita Electric Works operation did not break down any info on shavers. In case you're interested, the report is at http://panasonic.co.jp/corp/news/official.data/data.dir/en061027-2/en061027-2.html Finally, the December 2006 issue of Consumer Reports magazine includes an article on electric shavers with ratings on page 8. As a teaser, the $10 Titanium Turbo T2 I mentioned about scored a 53 in the "good" area.
October 18--Shaver company news to report. First, Philips released its Third Quarter 2006 results and the shaver making DAP unit had a great quarter with sales growing 9% over the previous Third Quarter. The growth was especially evident in the Shaving & Beauty and Oral Healthcare operations. Details at http://www.quarterlyresults.philips.com/files/R_3Q06.pdf Remington shaver maker Spectrum Brands also made news as the company announced that Cindy Crawford will be featured in a high profile benefit auction (for Locks of Love) and promotion for Remington's new products including their completely revamped line of rotary shavers. Details at http://phx.corporate-ir.net/phoenix.zhtml?c=75225&p=irol-newsArticle&ID=918075
October 1--The October Survey Page questions are influences by Electric Razor Rap discussions and are about the noise and vibration level of foil shavers and about shavers with cleaning machines.
September 7--I'm finally getting around to mentioning that the September Survey Page questions are about more new shaver models not mentioned last month. The entirely new Remington product lineup gets the most attention. So answer away. The Remington web site does not list the new models yet in the American section, but they are in the British section. The shaver gallery has been updated further to include the newest high end models from Philips, Remington and Panasonic/National.
August 13--I received a tip about the next generation of Braun shavers which is the Pulsonic including a photo of the model 9595 so I updated the Shaver Gallery. While I was updating it, I included a new photo of the Philips SmartTouch XL model HQ9190 which bears the Philips logo instead of the Philishave logo now that Philips no longer uses the Philishave brand name. Remington shaver maker Spectrum Brands released its fiscal 3rd Quarter 2006 financial results. In a nutshell, Improved sales of Remington products in Europe were offset by disappointing sales in North America. Details at http://phx.corporate-ir.net/phoenix.zhtml?c=75225&p=irol-newsArticle&ID=891625
August 1--The August questions are up and they are the annual questions about the new models. Canadian Tire asked to be a sponsored link so I inserted their banner. I asked them to create a custom banner for shavers. Their banner goes directly to their shaver selection.
July 17--Philips has released its 2nd Quarter 2006 results and their DAP unit had a great 2nd Quarter with sales up 13% compared to the 2nd Quarter of last year. DAP specifically mentioned Men's Health magazine's naming of the Philips SmartTouch XL as the "Best New Electric Razor" and the Philips Bodygroom body hair shaver as the "Best New Body Tool" as the first trimmer for "below the belt" shaving. You can read the PDF of the full report at http://www.investor.philips.com/reports/06_QR2_i/R_2Q06.pdf
July 2--The July questions are up, so answer away.
June 30--The July Survey Page questions will be about discontinued shavers. Because July 1 falls on Saturday, I'll be late in updating the Survey Page. I'll probably update it late Saturday or Sunday.
June 1--This month's Survey Page questions are devoted exclusively to developments at Philips Domestic Appliances and Personal Care (Philips DAP). Last Monday, I saw first hand what was previously reported as I was in Sarnia, Ontario, Canada and saw Philishave shavers being replaced by Philips branded shavers. So it's official: Philips has dropped the Philishave name. Last year in the USA, Philips DAP began co-branding their shavers "Philips Norelco" which I believe is the first step in phasing out the Norelco name in favour of the Philips brand. I'm also asking what you think about the controversial Internet commercial for the Philips Bodygroom shaver I mentioned in the May 4 posting below. The questions are up and running, so answer away!
May 4--After getting a list of ideas, I came up with the May Survey Page questions which asks what brand your current shaver is, what brand your previous shaver was and, if your memory servers you, what your very first electric shaver brand was. I had to spread the word about this hilarious on-line commercial for the Philips Bodygroom shaver for male body hair. It's at http://www.shaveeverywhere.com
May 2--I'm finally getting around to posting shaver industry news giving quarterly results. Philips DAP's sales for the First Quarter of 2006 increased around 10% and the only mention about shavers is Philips' sponsoring of the Williams Formula 1 team in Bahrain with its first online game letting spectators race against team drivers Mark Webber and Rico Rosberg. You can read the full report at http://www.philips.com/assets/Downloadablefile//2006---First-Quarterly-Report-15487.pdf Remington shaver maker Spectrum Brands released its fiscal released its fiscal Second Quarter 2006 results today and Remington got good news as its sales increased in all market areas including the brand's successful introduction in Latin American markets. You can read the full report at http://phx.corporate-ir.net/phoenix.zhtml?c=75225&p=irol-newsArticle&ID=850357&highlight= I know I'm late in posting the July Survey Page questions. I will post them eventually.
April 6--Remington shaver maker Spectrum Brands gave hints on what to expect in their fiscal Second Quarter 2006 report. In a nutshell, while their Rayovac battery business had disappointing results, their Remington personal care appliance business enjoyed market share increases across all segments in North America. You can read the full report at http://phx.corporate-ir.net/phoenix.zhtml?c=75225&p=irol-newsArticle&ID=839647&highlight= I'll be extremely busy from this point through next week so I won't be able to work on this web site or answer E-mail as often as I usually would. If I haven't answered your E-mail, please be patient.
April 5--By request, I added http://www.shaverware.com to the list of shaver shops on line.
April 2--The April Survey Page questions are up about rechargeable shavers and the types of batteries used in the shavers.
March 31--The April Survey Page questions will be about rechargeable shavers and the types of batteries in the shavers. The changeover may be a little late because April 1 falls on a weekend.
March 1--The March Survey Page questions are up and are about using a shaver for beard maintenance and shaving body hair. A new Philips shaver called the Bodygroom model BG2020 designed to shave body hair was the inspiration for this month's questions.
February 1--The February Survey Page questions I described yesterday are up and running. East Coast Shaver in Florida has set up an eBay store which they asked me to link to my shaver shop list. I did and the URL is http://stores.ebay.com/shaverstore They hope to have a regular web site up and running soon.
January 31--More quarterly reports to announce. First, Braun:
"Duracell and Braun delivered one percent sales growth to $1.28 billion during the quarter. Volume growth was partially offset by a negative two percent impact from foreign exchange. Duracell sales increased behind share growth, while Braun sales were driven by strong performance on new products such as 360 Complete, Tassimo, and Contour. Reported earnings before income taxes increased 46 percent to $243 million compared to published pro forma prior year results. Before any impact of purchase accounting related adjustments, earnings before income taxes were $286 million, an increase of 71 percent. Approximately one-half of this percentage increase was caused by non- recurring costs in the base period, primarily related to charges for the Functional Excellence program and asset write-downs. The balance of the earnings growth was driven primarily by favorable volume, lower manufacturing expenses and reduced overhead costs. Net Earnings for the segment were $165 million."
Now Remington shaver maker Spectrum Brands:
"North American net sales were $244.6 million as compared with $215.8 million reported last year. The inclusion of United's lawn and garden and household insect control businesses in the North American segment contributed $52.4 million in sales in the current year. Battery and lighting sales declined 18 percent as a result of (1) markdowns and closeouts of Rayovac's old marketing program (50% More Batteries) which were not completed until the end of the quarter and (2) an ongoing emphasis on retail inventory optimization that impaired sell-in in order to balance out yearend inventory levels. At retail, consumer pack purchases of Rayovac branded batteries increased by six percent, although dollar sales were down slightly due to promotional activities related to the marketing transition. Sales of Remington branded products declined modestly, as strong sales growth in women's shavers, personal care and grooming was offset by a decline in men's shavers. Consumer retail sales of Spectrum Brands lawn and garden products showed 16 percent growth. However, lawn and garden sales declined versus year ago standalone results for United Industries in a seasonally slow quarter, as certain retail customers deferred purchases from the first fiscal quarter into the second quarter.
North American segment profits were $24.8 million versus $41.3 million reported last year, the result of lower battery sales and normal seasonal losses in the acquired lawn and garden category.
European/ROW net sales were $182.7 million versus $222.3 million reported last year. Unfavorable foreign exchange translation accounted for $12.8 million of the decline. An overall stagnant economic and consumer spending environment in Europe and a continuing product mix shift to private label batteries negatively impacted sales. Sales of Remington products in the U.K. declined by approximately $20 million, compared to the extremely successful launch of the Wet 2 Straight product in the U.K. in the first quarter of fiscal 2005. Segment profitability for the quarter was $30.6 million compared with $36.0 million last year due to lower sales volume.
In Latin America, net sales increased to $60.0 million as compared to $52.7 million in the first quarter last year. Favorable currency translation accounted for $4.0 million of the increase. Sales growth was driven by the successful introduction of Remington branded products in this region coupled with modest growth in battery sales. Latin American segment profitability of $6.6 million compares to last year's $5.8 million."
The quarterly reports coming out of the shaver companies inspired me to make the February Survey Page questions reflect what the reports are showing. New products drive sales. Both Braun and Philips introduced radically new shaver models and did very well. Remington didn't and their sales were flat.
January 23--It's time for the annual reports to arrive. Here's the first report. The #1 shaver company Philips has released its 4th Quarter 2005 and 2005 Annual Report. Limiting the report to the shaver making DAP unit, for the 4th Quarter, Philips reported sales of 787 million euros, up by 42 million euros compared to 4th Quarter 2004. "Growth was driven by Shaving & Beauty (SmartTouch shavers) and Food & Beverage (PerfectDraft and Senseo). Oral Healthcare sales declined." DAP's 4th Quarter net income was 167 million euros, up by 11 million euros. For the fiscal year 2005, DAP had net income of 167 million euros, up by 11 million euros. You can read the full reports at http://www.newscenter.philips.com/Assets/Downloadablefile/R_4Q05-15212.pdf and http://www.newscenter.philips.com/About/news/article-15248.html
January 2--I just completed answering the final Tell Mr. Steel Beard posting for 2005. So when I work on the first Tell Mr. Steel Beard posting for 2006 (which I received today), I will wipe the slate clean and start a new page for 2006 with a link added to the 2005 postings.
January 1--Happy New Year! The January Survey Page questions are for those who received an electric shaver as a gift last month. As usual, when I receive the first Tell Mr. Steel Beard question for 2006, I will create an archive page for 2005.
December 18--I finally updated the compiled minipoll results which include the new models. Yes, it's a week before Christmas and Chanukah but I least I got the results updated before Christmas and Chanukah.
December 6--The December Survey Page questions are the annual holiday gift giving questions. Sad news to report as former Philips president and chairman Frederik "Frits" Philips passed away on December 5 at age 100. The news story is at http://www.newscenter.philips.com/About/news/article-15203.html
November 10--Remington shaver maker Spectrum Brands released its fiscal Fourth Quarter 2005 results which reported net losses which they blamed on decreasing battery sales and ongoing fixed costs. The Remington part of the business is doing fine. I can't give details in a nutshell so I'll let you read the report at http://phx.corporate-ir.net/phoenix.zhtml?c=75225&p=irol-newsArticle&ID=781298&highlight=
November 6--After updating the minipoll results one last time, I wiped the slate clean and started a new set of minipolls which reflect the availability of new models and the discontinuing of old models.
November 1--The November Survey Page questions ask about those seeking hard to find shavers and specfically mentions high-end hard to find models and whether you would be interested in seeking them. A shaver shop, Newcomer's in Hanover, Pennsylvania asked that I include them in the list of shaver shops. So I did. Their URL is http://www.newcomerscns.com
October 17--Shaver company news to report as Philips has released its 3rd Quarter results. Limiting the report to their shaver making Domestic Appliances and Personal Care unit, their 3rd Q income was 91 million euros, up from 86 million euros the previous 3rd Q. Of course, they proudly announced the rollout of the SmartTouch XL and Speed XL shavers. Their Senseo coffeemakers are also helping DAP sales. The PDF of the report can be found at http://www.philips.com/assets/Downloadablefile/2005---Third-Quarterly-Report-14874.pdf
October 2--The October Survey Page questions are up and they ask about shaver preferences based on the type of whiskers on your face. It includes questions for those prone to razor bumps.
September 30--The October Survey Page questions will be delayed slightly because October 1 falls on a weekend. Shaver company news as Procter & Gamble will take formally take over Braun's parent company Gillette on October 1. The news release follows:
P&G To Close Gillette Acquisition On October 1
CINCINNATI, Sept. 30, 2005 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- The Procter & Gamble Company (NYSE: PG) was informed that the Federal Trade Commission has cleared the proposed acquisition of the Gillette Company.
"We are excited that we can now move on to the Gillette closing and integration," said A.G. Lafley, P&G chairman, president, and chief executive. "The addition of Gillette will broaden our line-up to 22 brands with over a billion dollars in sales and will take us into new product areas, creating tremendous new opportunities to bring great products to consumers, great value to customers and increase shareholder value."
As part of the regulatory review process, the FTC is requiring several divestitures in categories where the companies have overlapping businesses. Prior to closing, P&G was required to divest SpinBrush, a battery powered toothbrush. Earlier this month, P&G announced an agreement to divest SpinBrush to Church & Dwight. Following closing, the company will divest Rembrandt, a Gillette oral care product line, and Right Guard, a Gillette deodorant. Additionally, the company will make Soft & Dri and Dry Idea, Gillette deodorant brands, available for purchase by the Right Guard buyer. The company will move ahead with the process for the other required divestitures during the October to December quarter.
Now that the deal has received regulatory clearance in the U.S. and EU, the company expects the acquisition to become effective on October 1.
On October 3, the first business day P&G and Gillette will operate jointly, the combined company will hold its first analyst meeting, 1:00 PM ET at the New York Stock Exchange. P&G Chairman, President and Chief Executive A.G. Lafley and Chief Financial Officer Clayton C. Daley, Jr., will provide further information on the closing and our plans going forward. There will be a live webcast of the meeting as well.
September 1--The September Survey Page questions are about those who use more than one shaver and ask those who have the Braun Activator, Philishave/Norelco Sensotec/Spectra or SpeedTouch XL what shaver they used previously. I killed the Updated.com link because it was causing havoc with pop-ups and it wasn't making money for me anyway.
August 18--By request, I added Image Supply at http://www.imagesupplyhouse.net to the list of shaver shops online.
August 4--Gilette released their 2nd Quarter 2005 results. The following is related to their Braun unit:
-- Braun net sales for the quarter climbed 16 percent to $341 million, fueled by solid growth in all regions from a very active new products program in hair removal and the notable success of new household appliances. In male shavers, Braun's Activator premium shaver and the new youth-oriented cruZer3 shaver drove share gains in all key markets. In Japan, for example, Braun unit share in May was the highest on record, while its value share of 33 percent in the latest reading was the best in more than two years. The strong second-quarter growth in Braun household appliance sales was led by the Tassimo on-demand coffee maker, which is now sold in France, Switzerland and the U.K. and will launch in the U.S. and other markets later this year.
August 1--Because I have room for a new set of questions for this month's Survey Page, I decided to add questions about shaver models whch include cleaning machines as Philips DAP has introduced Philishave/Norelco shaver models with cleaning machines joining originator Braun and Remington in offering shaver models with cleaning machines.
July 28--Remington shaver maker Spectrum Brands released its fiscal 3rd Quarter 2005 results. Mixed news this quarter for Remington. Because the Remington results are integrated throughout the report, you can read the results yourself at http://phx.corporate-ir.net/phoenix.zhtml?c=75225&p=irol-newsArticle&ID=736183&highlight= I've already decided to devote the August Survey Page to the new shaver models coming out or recently introduced.
July 22--Business Week and Interbrand have released the Top 100 global brand names for 2005. Three brands associated with shaving made the list: #15 is Gillette, #53 is Philips and #78 is Panasonic. #1 is Coca-Cola. Read the rankings at http://www.businessweek.com/pdfs/2005/0531_globalbrand.pdf
July 18--Philips released its 2nd Quarter 2005 results. The shaver making DAP unit had a small sales gain of 1% over the same period last year The sales growth was in Latin America and China while North America and Western Europe declined due to a weakened retail environment. Income from operations was EUR 44 million or 9.5% of sales. Despite weakened retail markets, margins were maintained at the same level as Q2 2004. Looking ahead, DAP will be introducing innovative new products (including the SmartTouch XL and Speed XL shavers) and expanding retail channels in emerging markets. Demand in Western Europe and North America is expected to remain weak and retail channels appear overstocked in certain product categories.
July 4--The Shaver Gallery Page has been updated to include the new Remington Titanium SmartSystem model MS-5700 and the new Philishave SmartTouch XL Clean & Charge model HQ9190/CC.
July 1--The July Survey Page questions will be devoted to how long electric shaver users have used electric shavers in general and if they used blade razors before.
June 26--The discovery of a previous electric shaver brand led me to add a new entry to the Shaver Brands Of The Past page. This is for Universal which was the brand used for household appliances made from 1862 to 1965 by Landers, Frary & Clark of New Britain, Connecticut, USA. They briefly marketed a battery operated travel shaver in 1959.
June 1--The June Survey Page questions are devoted to the second busiest season for shaver companies--Father's Day and Graduation season. I haven't asked these questions in two years.
May 5--Braun parent Gillette released their 1st Quarter 2005 results and the following info is about their Braun unit:
* Braun net sales grew 18 percent to $306 million for the quarter. Sales growth reflected strong performance in the AMEE region, particularly in Russia and Turkey, as well as ongoing gains in male and female hair removal led by the Braun Activator premium shaver, the new youth-oriented cruZer3 shaver and the Silk Epil female epilator.
* During the quarter, Braun increased its value share of the male electric shaver market in North America and Europe. In the U.S., for example, Braun posted a 2.7 percentage point gain in value share to 23.3 percent. Profit from operations of $5 million, down from $21 million last year, was tempered by higher costs related to manufacturing realignment and currency-related increases in European-based manufacturing costs.
May 4--Remington shaver maker Spectrum Brands released its fiscal 2nd Quarter 2005 results and the results look good as Remington increased its global sales by 10%. You can read the results yourself at http://phx.corporate-ir.net/phoenix.zhtml?c=75225&p=irol-newsArticle&ID=705162&highlight=
May 1--The May Survey Page questions asks for opinions about your recently purchased shaver and about the minipolls I maintain as well as the compiled results.
April 28--At the request of IdeaVillage.com, which makes and markets the Titanium Turbo shaver, I've included that company in the list of shaver manufacturers.
April 27--Shaver industry news to report from Remington shaver maker Rayovac Corporation. Rayovac Corporation is officially changing its name to Spectrum Brands, Inc. The name change will take effect on May 2. The name change is intended to reflect the company's more diversified operations. The following is the official news release from Rayovac:
ATLANTA--(BUSINESS WIRE)--April 27, 2005--Rayovac Corporation (NYSE:ROV) announced that the proposal to change its corporate name to Spectrum Brands, Inc. was approved by shareholders at the company's 2005 annual meeting of shareholders earlier today.
Rayovac Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Dave Jones told the gathering of shareholders that the name change represents a momentous occasion in the history of the company. "This name change symbolizes the completion of the transformation of Rayovac Corporation from a U.S. battery manufacturer to a global diversified consumer products company with a robust portfolio of brands across seven major product categories," Jones said. "The name 'Spectrum Brands' more clearly describes the company we are today, and evokes our strategy of growth through commitment to world-class consumer product brands."
The official corporate name change becomes effective May 2, 2005. At the commencement of trading on that date, the company's common stock, which is traded on the New York Stock Exchange, will begin trading under the symbol "SPC." In honor of the occasion, Jones and other Spectrum Brands senior executives will be on hand at the New York Stock Exchange on May 2 to participate in the opening bell ceremony.
Rayovac shareholders are not required to take any further action with respect to the name change.
Other matters approved by shareholders at today's meeting were the election of three Class I directors, Neil P. DeFeo, Barbara S. Thomas and David A. Jones, to the Board of Directors, and the appointment of KPMG LLP as the company's independent registered public accounting firm for fiscal 2005.
April 24--By request, I've included Authorized Appliance and Repair of St. Louis, Missouri USA to the list of shaver shops on line. Their web site is at http://authorizedappliance.net
April 1--The April Survey Page questions are for users of wet/dry shavers designed for use in the shower.
March 30--At the request of Regency Distributors of B.C., Canada, I've added them in the list of shaver shops on line. They sell shavers amongst other items.
March 18--Shaver industry news to report as Philips Domestic Appliances and Personal Care is consolidating its sales and marketing operations in the USA, Canada and Mexico in Stamford, Connecticut, USA where Norelco is currently headquartered. The new headquarters, to be called Philips Domestic Appliances and Personal Care North America will lead the marketing of Philips DAP products bearing the Philips, Philishave, Norelco, Sonicare and Senseo brand names. You can read this story at http://www.appliancemagazine.com/news.php?article=8301&zone=0&first=1 and at http://www.stamfordadvocate.com/business/scn-sa-philipsmar17,0,3064218.story?coll=stam-business-headlines
March 14--I have yet another shaver company to introduce thanks to an E-mail from that company, It's Ningbo Sharp-Speed Electrical Appliances Co., Ltd. This Chinese company makes personal care appliances including shavers and is on the Internet at http://sharpspeed.en.ecplaza.net. Of course, I included it in the list of shaver companies on line.
March 10--I have another new shaver company to introduce, Shavetronics. They strive to produce simple, no-nonsense shavers of quality construction which offer ease of use, are built to last and don't have flashy bells and whistles. They E-mailed me asking that I include them so I did. Their URL is http://www.shavetronics.com
March 8--I received an E-mail from Zhejiang Meida Electric Appliance Co., Ltd. whose URL is http://www.meidashaver.com seeking business from me. Because I don't directly sell shavers, I did the next best thing which is to include the company in the shaver company links page.
February 27--I updated the Shaver Gallery page to insert the new Panasonic/National Lamdash model ES8176. The March Survey Page questions will look inward and ask questions about this web site.
February 24--Comments on Izumi shavers as well as finding a URL for Izumi shavers again led me to return Izumi Products Company to the list of shaver companies on line. The Izumi link is for the shaver division.
February 15--Remington shaver marker Rayovac Corporation announced it is changing its name to Spectrum Brands, Inc. to reflect its more diversified operations. The individual brands of products the company makes and markets will remain the same. The name change is subject to shareholder approval The new story is at http://phx.corporate-ir.net/phoenix.zhtml?c=75225&p=irol-newsArticle&ID=674904&highlight=
February 4--Braun's parent company Gillette released their Fourth Quarter 2004 results and the following is the report for their Braun unit. They report good news:
Braun net sales for the year increased 16 percent to $1.37 billion from $1.18 billion in 2003, and profit from operations was $95 million, up 94 percent from $49 million a year ago. The increase in net sales reflected the introduction of new products such as the top-of-the-line Activator men's shaver; the youth-oriented CruZer shaver and styler; and strong demand for the SoftPerfection female epilator in Europe, Russia and Turkey. During the year, Braun made significant progress in growing its core hair removal business. In the fourth quarter, Braun increased its value share of male electric shavers in the U.S., Europe and Japan with Activator and Syncro, which were the two top-selling male shaver products in the U.S. in December. Contributors to the very strong profit increase were solid net sales growth and a favorable mix of higher margin products, particularly male shavers and female epilators, which were supported by a double-digit percentage increase in marketing investment. For the fourth quarter, net sales rose to $493 million, up 28 percent from $385 million for the fourth quarter of 2003, while profit from operations increased to $28 million from $6 million in the previous year.
February 1--The February Survey Page questions are about rechargeable and corded-only shavers. Because I last asked about rechargeable shavers 11 months ago, the questions will be more about rechargeable shaver reliability and should there be a wider selection of corded-only shavers available. Like the previous rechargeable shaver Survey Page, this set of questions are inspired by comments I've read and the new questions are inspired by the new comments.
January 28--Plenty of industry news to report with the top story, consumer products giant Procter & Gamble buys The Gillette Company, including Braun GmbH, for US$57 billion making it the largest transaction in P&G history. Details at http://www.prnewswire.com/cgi-bin/stories.pl?ACCT=104&STORY=/www/story/01-28-2005/0002909473&EDATE=
Two of Braun's main rivals released quarterly figures: Remington shaver maker Rayovac released fiscal First Quarter 2005 numbers which you can see at http://phx.corporate-ir.net/phoenix.zhtml?c=75225&p=irol-newsArticle&ID=667255&highlight= and in a nutshell, Remington had a weak quarter in North America which was made up by gains in the rest of the world, especially in Europe. Philishave/Norelco shaver maker Philips released both Fourth Quarter and 2004 results. The Philips Fourth Quarter results are found in a PDF file at http://www.investor.philips.com/reports/04_AR_i/download/R_4Q04.pdf which mentions strong sales of the new 7000 series Cool Skin shavers. The 2004 results limited to the shaver making DAP unit is at http://www.investor.philips.com/reports/04_AR_i/perform_sectors/dap.html which shows a slight decline compared to the previous three years.
January 16--The revised Minipoll questions are up and running. I hope I included all the currently available models from Philishave/Norelco, Braun, Remington and Panasonic/National for the questions and I removed the discontinued models. Please let me know if somewhere around the world a model I did not include from the above brands is in the regular stores as opposed to close-out stores.
January 13--I hope to complete revising the Minipolls by this weekend. By request, I've added The Shaver Depot, a New York-based wholesaler of shaver parts, batteries and accessories, to the shaver shop list. They are at http://www.shaverdepot.com and shaver stores and repair shops looking for small quanities of product are encouraged to contact them. Sam at The Shaver Depot tells me that all pricing is designed to give the resellers as much profit margin as possible and they offer free shipping as well.
January 10--This week I plan on revising the Minipoll questions for the top four brands broken down by product lines. After compiling the current Minipolls one last time, I'll wipe the slate clean (except for the favorite brand question) and start a new set of Minipolls using the same questions about the best and worst models broken down by product lines. Newer models such as the Braun Activator and the 7000 series Philishave/Norelco Cool Skin were making gains in the recent compiled Minipolls so I want to start fresh. I'll also indicate the type of heads used (foil, rotary, slotted head) based on a suggestion which also asks that I include percentages and charts. Because I'm using freeware web publishing software for this web site, I don't have the expertise to generate web pages with bar and/or pie charts. Of course, Bravenet hosts the Minipolls so I have to follow the constrants of their format. Any suggestions are encouraged. I'm using an old version of AOL Press and Evrsoft's 1st Page 2000 to create these web pages.
January 2--First of all, Happy New Year! The January Survey Page questions are the annual post-holiday season gift questions for those who received an electric shaver as a gift. I've uploaded the last Tell Mr. Steel Beard postings for 2004. With the first Tell Mr. Steel Beard submission for 2005, I'll start a new page with links to the pages from previous years. I admit that I've been neglecting some of the link pages so that there are now several dead links. Because I've been so busy keeping up with the E-mail and Tell Mr. Steel Beard postings, I wondering if anyone can point out specific dead links and if there are new URLs replacing the dead URLs, please let me know.
December 6--The Cutting Zone, a shaver shop in Yonkers, New York, USA was added to the list of shaver shops on line at the request of the owners. The URL is http://www.thecuttingzone.com. The owners are former Remington employees who were sales managers for Remington until new owner Rayovac closed Remington's retail operations so they know the shaver business. On the Bravenet bandwidth hosting problem I mentioned yesterday, the bandwith maxxed out even sooner today so I moved the minipoll results page from Bravenet to Comcast to see if that frees up more bandwidth.
December 5--Kiefer's Appliances of Monona, Wisconsin, USA has asked me to link their web site at http://www.kieferappliance.com in the list of shaver shops I maintain so I did. I'm trying to relieve pressure on the Bravenet-hosted sections of the Electric Shaver Page which is using too much bandwidth lately. I've started relieving the pressure by moving the Ads Of The Week from the Bravenet-hosted sections to the Comcast-hosted sections. Let's see if this solves the bandwidth problem which seems to be a good problem to have, do you think? I also changed the Remington heading in the list of shaver companies as Remington Products Company LLC has been absorbed into parent company Rayovac Corporation so the heading now says "Remington shavers from Rayovac Corporation".
December 1--The December Survey Page questions are the annual holiday gift giving or receiving questions. This is the Electric Shaver Page's peak period as far as traffic is concerned and one side effect of the popularity is that the web pages Bravenet host which I maintain are using up more bandwidth than my allocation for the free service so I apologise for the inconvience and if you get the excess bandwidth notice when you try to access the Bravenet hosted areas, please try and use those pages earlier in the day.
November 10--Remington's parent company Rayovac announced their 4th Quarter and fiscal year 2004 results. Because the Remington figures are integrated into Rayovac's figures, I'll link the report which is at http://phx.corporate-ir.net/phoenix.zhtml?c=75225&p=irol-newsArticle&ID=643042&highlight= and a quick look indicates that Remington is helping Rayovac's bottom line.
November 1--The November Survey Page questions were last asked on September 2002 and ask what's important to you when you buy a shaver.
October 27--Gillette announced their 3rd Quarter results and the following is about their Braun unit:
Braun net sales for the quarter increased 9 percent to $320 million from $293 million for the third quarter of 2003, and profit from operations was $22 million, even with a year ago. Sales benefited from strong demand for the SoftPerfection female epilator in Europe, Russia and Turkey. Sales also reflected initial shipments of the top-of-the-line Activator shaver in the U.S. and new youth CruZer shaver in the U.K. Profit was impacted by a $7 million increase in Functional Excellence-related costs, the Company's multi-year program to lower overhead and improve capabilities; a double-digit percentage increase in advertising; and currency-related increases in European-based manufacturing expenses. For the nine months, sales rose to $874 million, up 10 percent from $792 million for the same period last year, while profit from operations increased 53 percent to $66 million from $43 million in the previous year.
October 11--Wenzhou Huachang Razors Co. Ltd., a Chinese company which makes Huachang electric shavers, E-mailed me so I added that company to the list of shaver companies on line.
October 1--The October Survey Page questions are devoted to men who have long sideburns, beards and/or moustaches and what kind of shavers and, if necessary, trimmers are used.
September 13--Minor changes were made during the past few days such as making the list of previous survey page questions page easier to use by reversing the order so now the most recent Survey Page question list is on the top. I also describe the more recent Survey Page questions. After I was alerted to a web site from Payer's New Zealand distributor which lists their products, I added the URL to the shaver company listing page under Payer.
September 1--The September Survey Page questions were last asked on May of 2002 and asks about if the speed of a shaver's motor matters, wet/dry vs. dry shavers, getting your skin used to your new shaver, which type of shaver is less irritating, which preparation you use with a wet/dry shaver, shaving surface questions, brand preference for those new to shaving and those who has used electric shavers for several years. I've been asked by Olympic Shaver Centre, a British shaver shop, to add their messsage board at http://www.shavers.co.uk/forum/ to the list of message boards links I maintain. I'll try and do that within the next couple of days.
August 12--By request, I added Boutik Electrik, with locations in the Canadian provinces of Quebec, New Brunswick and Nova Scotia to the list of shaver shops on line.
August 10--I received a request from Western Shaver Center Ltd in New Westminster, British Columbia, Canada to be included in my links to shaver shops on line. So I included them. They are at http://www.westernshaver.com . In reading the appliance trade publications, I noticed the introduction of a Panasonic Pro-Curve (Lamdash) ES8095nc. I chose not to report the introduction as it has already been mentioned in the shaver message boards and this model is a slightly more deluxe version of Panasonic/National's high-end "Lamdash" line. What I chose to do instead is to make the ES8095nc the high-end Panasonic model in the Shaver Gallery.
August 1--With significant new Philishave/Norelco and Braun shaver models introduced this year, I'll devote the August Survey Page to the buying habits of those shopping for a new shaver and if they will consider buying either the new Philishave/Norelco 7000 series Cool Skin shaver or the Braun Activator shaver.
July 29--Gillette has released their 2nd Quarter results and the following covers their Braun unit:
Braun net sales for the quarter increased 4 percent to $294 million, and profit from operations was $24 million, compared with $28 million in the previous year. Sales benefited from strong demand in developing markets, particularly Russia and Turkey, and within Southern Europe. Growth in the quarter was tempered by comparisons with the 2003 SARS-related spike in demand for Thermoscan products in Asia and North America. Profit was impacted by an increase in advertising and currency related increases in European-based manufacturing expenses. For the first six months, sales rose 11 percent to $553 million, while profit from operations more than doubled to $45 million from $21 million for the previous year, primarily because of a favorable mix of higher margin products in the first quarter, particularly male shavers and female epilators.
July 22--Remington's parent company Rayovac released its 3rd Quarter fiscal year 2004 results. Because Remington's results are integrated into Rayovac's report, I chose to link the report which is at http://ir.thomsonfn.com/InvestorRelations/PubNewsStory.aspx?partner=169&product=IR&storyid=117742 I also added the marketer of the bargain-priced ShaveMan battery operated shaver to the list of shaver companies on line after it was praised in a Tell Mr. Steel Beard posting.
July 13--Shaver industry news as Philips released its 2nd Quarter results. The following is about their DAP unit which makes Philishave/Norelco shavers:
The new Coolskin additive shaver range was well received by retailers and consumers.
Senseo continues to perform strongly in Europe. It is also leading the development of the cup-by-cup coffeemaker market in the USA, where it has tested as the preferred product. More than 6 million Senseo coffeemakers have been sold worldwide since first being brought to the market.
Philips DAP Industries Poland was recognized as the most effective company in Poland in the manufacturing and non-finance related sector by the Polish Academy of Science and Ministry of Economics.
Sales were at the same level as last year. On a comparable basis sales grew by 2%, whereas the main markets in which DAP operates were flat or even declining. The comparable growth was primarily driven by improved sales at Shaving & Beauty and Food & Beverage.
Income from operations included approximately EUR 20 million for increased investments in advertising and promotion and in expansion of retail channels into emerging markets as well as increased legal expenses. Solid gross margins were maintained.
Continued focus on asset management led to a reduction in net operating capital compared to Q2 2003.
Focus on launching new products, extending partnerships, expanding retail channels into emerging markets and enhancing purchasing and cost savings.
Investments in advertising and promotion will be ongoing in Q3 and Q4.
Continuous competitive pressure in North America and Western Europe.
July 7--Shaver industry news to report at Rayovac's Remington unit as veteran Remington executive Jim Doyle has been promoted to vice president of the men's and women's grooming division. Remington also appointed Jack Potts, formerly with Helen of Troy, as director of hair dryers.
July 1--The July Survey Page questions, inspired by recent postings in the Electric Razor Rap message board, ask about pre-shave preparations and also ask about shaver preference based on the type of whiskers being shaved.
June 13--I received an E-mail from Zhejiang Flyco Electrical Appliance Co., Ltd. asking me to add that company to the list of shaver companies on line. So I did.
June 1--The June Survey Page questions, which I last asked three years ago, ask users their dislikes about the top four shaver brands and also ask what influences your choice of shaver.
May 2--The May Survey Page questions which I just posted were last asked on March 2001 and breaks down who uses the top shaver brands by age group. The brands I listed are Philishave/Norelco, Braun, Remington, Panasonic/National and Grundig. I have room for three more brands so if your shaver brand is not what I just listed, please E-mail me at the usual E-mail address mentioning the brand.
April 29--Gillette released its First Quarter results and the following is about their Braun unit:
-- Braun net sales of $259 million for the quarter grew 21 percent, including a 10 percent gain from foreign exchange. Profit from operations of $21 million was up from a $6 million loss reported the prior year. Sales growth reflected strong performance in the AMEE region, particularly in Russia and Turkey, as well as a favorable mix of higher-margin male shavers and higher-priced household appliances. Braun shavers continued to gain value share in most key markets, despite weak consumer offtake and price discounting by competitors. Braun's best-selling Syncro shaver drove a 1 percentage point gain in U.S. value share to 22.4 percent. Profit in the quarter was driven by favorable mix of higher-margin products, particularly male shavers and female epilators, tempered somewhat by currency-related increases in European-based manufacturing costs.
April 13--First Quarter results are in at Philips and this URL gives results for their Domestic Appliances and Personal Care unit which includes shavers: http://www.investor.philips.com/reports/04_QR1_i/performance/domestic.html and the main highlights include the launch of the new Cool Skin range of shavers to retailers in North America and Europe and warning of competitive pressure particularly in the North American shaving business.
April 11--After I found out that the Eltron brand of shavers is owned by Parks Products, Inc. of Hollywood, California, I brought back the Eltron link to the list of shaver companies which goes to the Parks Products web site. I kept the Parks Products link in the shaver shops page. I also have an update to the Shaver Brands of the Past page of the Shaving History section as I learned about another brand of the past called Volcano. After getting the info on this now-defunct shaver company which wasn't affiliated to the electric fan company of the same name, I added Volcano to the Shaver Brands of the Past listing.
April 1--The April Survey Page questions are about the shaver company's customer service departments. Because of differences between Philips' Philishave and Norelco web site's customer service sections, I listed those brands separately in some of the questions. Shaver company news to report concerning Gillette's Braun unit. The news release follows:
BOSTON--(BUSINESS WIRE)--March 30, 2004--The Gillette Company (NYSE:G) today announced two senior management appointments, effective April 1. Mark M. Leckie has been named Group President, Duracell and Braun Global Business Management groups, and Edward D. Shirley has been appointed President, International Commercial Operations. Both executives will continue to report to James M. Kilts, Chairman, President and Chief Executive Officer.
The appointments follow the retirement of Ernst A. Haberli, who headed both International Commercial Operations and Braun.
Mr. Leckie, 50, who currently serves as President of the Duracell Global Business Management group, will assume additional responsibility for Braun.
"Mark brings to this assignment excellent experience, an outstanding track record of success and strong leadership skills," said Mr. Kilts.
Mr. Leckie started his career in the financial and strategic planning areas at Nabisco in 1977. He moved to Kraft as Director of Strategic Planning in 1984. He went to Canada in 1989 as Vice President of Kraft's meals and enhancers division. Mr. Leckie subsequently advanced to head of marketing for Kraft's U.S. Grocery Products division, and later served for four years as Executive Vice President of Kraft, and President of its Post Cereals division. In 1997, Mr. Leckie moved to the Campbell Soup Co., as President of US Grocery, which included its soups, sauces and beverages. In 2000, he assumed his position as President of the Canadian subsidiary of H.J. Heinz. Mr. Leckie joined Gillette as President of the Duracell Global Business Management Group in 2001.
Mr. Shirley, 47, who currently serves as Senior Vice President, Global Value Chain and Global Marketing Resources, will now be responsible for the sales and trade marketing of the Company's product line in Europe, Latin America, Asia-Pacific and AMEE (Africa, Middle East and Eastern Europe).
"Ed's broad-based background in international general management, finance and sales makes him well-qualified to lead our International Commercial perations," said Mr. Kilts.
Mr. Shirley's successor as the head of the Global Value Chain will be announced at a later date. The Global Marketing Resources group, led by John Darman, will report to Peter Klein, Senior Vice President, Strategy & Business Development.
Mr. Shirley joined Gillette in the finance organization of the Blades and Razors business in 1978. During the next ten years, he held a series of financial management positions of increasing responsibility and scope, culminating in his promotion to Vice President, finance and administration, for Oral-B North America in 1988. After a series of marketing and sales assignments, he was named President of Oral-B North America in 1994.
Three years later, Mr. Shirley was appointed Executive Director of sales for Braun Europe, headquartered in Kronberg, Germany. He assumed responsibility for Braun's global sales organization in 1998. He was promoted to the position of President, European Commercial Operations, based in London, in 2000. Mr. Shirley returned to Boston to take on his current assignment in 2002.
March 1--The March Survey Page questions are devoted to rechargeable shavers and was inspired by both messages posted on the Electric Razor Rap message board as well as my own need to replace my rechargeable beard trimmer. The questions about either the repair or disposal of rechargeables will cover all personal care appliances including beard trimmers and electric toothbrushes, not just shavers.
February 1--Thanks to Jim Elliott of the Electric Razor Rap message board, I've added a Chinese shaver company, Guangke Electrical Appliance Co., Ltd., to the list of shaver companies on line. The February Survey Page questions are about those who buy electric shavers solely because of the price and if electric shaver buyers don't care or are concerned about the shaver's country of origin. That was inspired by my impulse purchase of a US$3 electric shaver at a neighbourhood dollar store last month. I have a review of that shaver in the Electric Razor Rap message board.Click here to see that thread.
January 29--Shaver industry news as financial results come in from Remington's parent Rayovac and Braun's parent Gillette. First, Rayovac whose fiscal year began in October:
MADISON, Wis., Jan. 22 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- Rayovac Corp. (NYSE: ROV) announced today Fiscal 2004 first quarter diluted earnings per share of 67 cents and pro forma diluted earnings per share of 65 cents, exceeding First Call estimates. This compares to diluted earnings per share of a loss of two cents and pro forma diluted earnings per share of 33 cents for the comparable prior year period. The pro forma diluted EPS excludes the impact of certain items described in further detail in this release and in the attached Table 3, "Reconciliation of GAAP to Pro Forma Financial Data."
"Our excellent financial performance in the first quarter of fiscal 2004 is testimony to the strength and reputation of our growing family of brands, which now includes Remington, and the enthusiastic support of retailers and consumers around the world," said Dave Jones, Rayovac chairman and CEO. "We are extremely pleased with our positive gains in North America and the rest of our new global enterprise. As we move forward with the integration plans for Remington, we believe we have the strategic focus and a solid foundation in place for continued growth and success in North America and throughout the world."
First Quarter Results
Results for the first quarter of Fiscal 2004 include those of the Remington Products LLC, which was acquired on September 30, 2003. All comparisons to Fiscal 2003 exclude Remington in the prior year. The attached Table 4 "Pro Forma Net Sales Comparison" compares sales performance of the Company assuming Remington was acquired on September 30, 2002. Also, the net sales information for Remington excludes sales from its retail service centers. The service center results are presented as discontinued operations in the current quarter's statement of condensed consolidated operations.
For the first quarter, sales were $454.0 million, compared to $260.2 million for the same period last year. The sales increase was mainly attributable to the Remington acquisition and sales growth in all three geographic regions. Favorable foreign exchange contributed $22.0 million to the sales growth. Operating income increased to $49.7 million, compared to $10.6 million for the same period last year. Fiscal 2004 results benefited from the Remington acquisition and increased profitability in Europe. The current quarter's results include a $1.1 million restructuring charge related to change of control agreements with certain Remington employees. Fiscal 2003 results included $15.4 million of restructuring and related charges associated with the VARTA integration and other global restructuring initiatives.
Pro forma operating income was $50.8 million, an increase of $24.8 million from the $26.0 million reported last year. The increase was attributed to the Remington acquisition as well as improved profitability in Europe.
Interest expense for the quarter increased to $17.4 million from $10.1 million last year, the result of higher debt levels attributable to the Remington acquisition. Last year's first quarter results included a non-operating expense of $3.1 million, reflecting the write-off of unamortized debt issuance costs related to the refinancing of the Company's credit facility as part of the VARTA acquisition.
Diluted earnings per share was 67 cents compared to a loss of two cents last year. Pro forma diluted earnings per share was 65 cents compared to pro forma diluted earnings per share of 33 cents last year. See attached Table 3, "Reconciliation of GAAP to Pro Forma Financial Data," for a complete reconciliation of operating income and net income, on a GAAP basis, to pro forma operating income and net income for the first quarter and the comparable period last year.
North America sales were $230.9 million, up from the $107.1 million reported last year. This increase was due to the Remington acquisition, which increased sales by $109.5 million and strong sales of alkaline, up 26 percent, and rechargeables, up 19 percent. North America segment profitability improved to $33.9 million, up from the $19.7 million reported last year. The $14.2 million increase was due to both the Remington acquisition and the favorable impact of last year's restructuring and cost improvement initiatives.
Europe sales were $186.9 million, up from $118.7 million last year. The Remington acquisition increased sales by $51.5 million. Favorable foreign currency exchange rates contributed to the majority of the remaining revenue growth for the quarter. Segment profitability increased $16.7 million to $32.7 million, largely due to the benefits of the Remington acquisition, favorable foreign currency exchange rates and the realization of cost synergies from the VARTA acquisition.
In Latin America, sales increased to $36.2 million from $34.4 million in the same period last year. Sales growth occurred in Mexico and the Southern Cone regions despite unfavorable currency exchange rates. This growth was partially offset by continued market softness in the Caribbean and Andean regions. Segment profitability was down $1.2 million in the quarter due to a shift in customer mix and increased operating expenses.
Corporate expenses increased to $18.2 million, up from $13.3 million for the same period last year, due primarily to the Remington acquisition and increased incentive compensation accruals.
The current quarter results also include $1.4 million of after-tax income from the Remington's service center operations, which is being classified as a discontinued operation. The Company has initiated actions to close or dispose of the remaining retail service centers by the end of the fiscal second quarter, completing an initiative begun by Remington several years ago.
During the quarter the Company retired the remaining $56.0 million of outstanding Remington subordinated notes and paid down $72.0 million of senior credit facility debt. Total debt as of December 28, 2003 was $829.3 million, down $114.1 million from the end of September as a result of the debt payments partially offset by a $14.0 million unfavorable foreign currency impact.
Rayovac last week announced plans to integrate all Remington operations. The plan, which entails the closing of several Remington facilities and the integration of all functional departments, will be implemented between February and December of this year. Remington's worldwide operations will be absorbed into Rayovac's existing North American and European business units, utilizing the Company's existing global organization and infrastructure. The result is a reduction of approximately 500 positions in the combined organizations, 300 in the U.S. service centers, 130 in administration and 70 in manufacturing.
The Rayovac and Remington research and product development functions will be merged into a single organization based at Rayovac's corporate research facility in Madison, WI. In addition, Rayovac will create a new global product innovation group within the research and product development functions, charged with incubating and developing product innovations across all of the Company's product categories. This group will utilize dedicated market research resources as well as the latest computerized product design technologies to continue the flow of new products to market.
Beginning this spring, all Remington distribution facilities in North America will be integrated into Rayovac's distribution facilities and infrastructure. Packaging and distribution activities at Remington's third-party-operated facility in Atlanta, GA will be transitioned to Rayovac's facilities in Dixon, IL and LaVergne, TN. In Canada, the Remington distribution center will be closed and all activity transferred to the Rayovac facility in Mississauga, Ontario, Canada.
Most Remington manufacturing activities conducted at the Bridgeport facility will be transferred to Rayovac's manufacturing plant in Portage, WI. Manufacturing operations in Bridgeport, CT will be phased out beginning this fall, with the plant closing by calendar year-end.
Rayovac currently expects annualized savings from the Remington integration initiatives to total approximately $30-35 million when fully implemented by the end of fiscal 2005 and to require one-time cash costs, primarily in fiscal 2004, of a comparable amount. Included in these amounts are $8 million to $10 million of projected Rayovac restructuring and related charges that will impact reported earnings during fiscal 2004. The Company recognized $1.1 million of non-recurring expense during the first quarter related to change of control agreements with certain Remington employees.
(end of Rayovac results) Now for Gillette's Braun unit:
-- Braun sales for the year of $1.18 billion increased 11 percent, including a 9 percent gain from foreign exchange. Profit of $49 million fell 35 percent. These results reflected weakness in the male shaver segment, higher exchange-driven European-based costs, and incremental warranty provisions incurred in the first quarter of 2003. Sales for the fourth quarter of $385 million were 4 percent higher than a year ago and benefited from favorable foreign exchange of 10 percent.
In North America, strong consumer demand for Braun's new FreeGlider and Flex XP2 shavers drove Braun's U.S. dollar share to 24 percent, up 1 percentage point. However, this gain was more than offset by weak category dynamics in male shavers in Europe and Japan. Reduced consumption levels in both Europe and Japan resulted in trade destocking, which, in turn, lowered year-over-year shipments in the fourth quarter.
Profit of $6 million was affected by an unfavorable shift in product mix related to the weak male shaver segment, a double-digit increase in marketing spending to support new product launches and higher European-based manufacturing costs due to exchange.
January 15--I received a request from Jakub Prucha to add his on line shaver shop in Prague, Czech Republic to my list of shaver shops on-line. So I did. The URL is http://www.holici-strojky.com. Jakub tells me that "holicí-strojky" means "shave-machines" translated to English.
January 13--Shaver industry news and sad news for Remington employees in Bridgeport, Connecticut, USA:
-- Remington's Bridgeport Facility to Be Phased Out Over Next Several Months
MADISON, Wis., Jan. 13 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- Rayovac Corporation (NYSE: ROV) today announced significant operational changes to integrate Remington Products, which it acquired in September 2003.
Remington's current headquarters and shaver screen manufacturing complex in Bridgeport, CT will be consolidated with Rayovac operations in Wisconsin between March and November. The Remington office operations will be relocated to Rayovac's Madison, WI headquarters complex. The manufacturing functions will be moved to Rayovac's Portage, WI plant beginning this fall with the plant closing by calendar year-end.
As a result of these actions, approximately 96 hourly manufacturing and 121 administrative employees will be laid off. Rayovac will provide severance packages to all employees not offered continuing employment, as well as outplacement services. Layoffs will begin at the end of March.
"Decisions that affect people's lives are always difficult," said Dave Jones, Rayovac chairman and CEO. "In fairness to our employees, whose contributions we appreciate, we are making this announcement as early as possible. We intend to help out-placed employees make the transition to new employment," Jones said.
Rayovac and Remington sales management, field sales operations and marketing will be merged into a single North American sales and marketing organization combining the expertise and talent of both organizations. The new structure will be launched in mid-February immediately following Rayovac's global sales meeting.
Finance, Information Systems, customer service and other administrative functions will be transferred to the existing counterpart organizations at Rayovac's North American headquarters located in Madison, WI. The transition is scheduled for the end of March, concurrent with the migration of all Remington business transactions into Rayovac's SAP system.
The Rayovac and Remington research and product development functions will be merged into a single organization based at Rayovac's corporate research facility in Madison, WI. Beginning this spring, all Remington's distribution facilities in North America will be integrated into Rayovac's distribution facilities and infrastructure. Packaging and distribution activities at Remington's third- party-operated facility in Atlanta, GA will be transitioned to Rayovac's facilities in Dixon, IL and LaVergne, TN. In Canada, the Remington distribution center will be closed and all activity transferred to the Rayovac facility in Mississauga, Ontario Canada.
Planning for the integration of Rayovac and Remington international operations is continuing and is expected to be complete by the end of the first quarter. Details will be provided at a later date. Also, the 65 remaining Remington U.S. Service Centers will be closed by the end of February, completing an initiative begun by Remington several years ago. A total of 311 full-time, part-time and seasonal employees will be laid off.
In conjunction with these initiatives and to support its global expansion and diversification strategy, Rayovac will relocate its corporate headquarters to Atlanta, GA in the spring of 2004. Executive management, corporate finance, and selected other corporate administrative functions will be relocated. Twenty-five positions will move to Atlanta, GA. The growing size and maturity of the regional business unit structure as well as the desire to headquarter in a more central geographic location closer to key global customers and regional headquarter locations were the key drivers behind this decision. "We intend to continue to grow our business and leverage our global presence both by expanding market share of our family of products and by adding more leading brands to our fine stable of world-class offerings," Jones continued. "This move to Atlanta improves our access to all global customers and moves us closer to our global markets."
Rayovac Corporation is a global consumer products company with a diverse portfolio of world-class brands, including Rayovac, VARTA and Remington. The Company holds many leading market positions including: the world's leader in hearing aid batteries; the top selling rechargeable battery brand in North America and Europe; and the number one selling brand of men's and women's foil electric razors in North America. Rayovac markets its products in more than 100 countries and trades on the New York Stock Exchange under the ROV symbol.
January 1--Happy New Year! The January Survey Page questions are again for those who received an electric shaver as a gift. I hope my nephew takes part in this survey. The latest link I found is found in the 'other' section which is a "Shopping Bag" report on electric shavers from Canada's W cable network. Because I have uploaded all the Tell Mr. Steel Beard submissions for 2003, I'll start a new Tell Mr. Steel Beard page for 2004 after I answer the first Tell Mr. Steel Beard submission for 2004.
December 14--I stumbled onto another Chinese company which makes shavers, Ridian Electrical Co. Ltd. so I added a link to their web site in the list of shaver companies on line. I found another shaver industry news story concerning a legal action, this time involving Gillette (on behalf on their Braun unit) suing Rayovac's Remington unit for patent infringement. I usually get press releases from both companies, but because I could not find a press release from either company, here is a link to the news story: http://biz.yahoo.com/djus/031211/1715001343_1.html The suit involves a Remington shaver with a cleaning machine similar to the cleaning machine offered with Braun's high-end shavers
December 12--The following two press releases were issued by Rayovac and Philips concerning the ruling by a USA Federal Court in favour of Philips' Norelco unit in their complaint against Rayovac's Remington unit concerning a Remington TV commercial:
Rayovac Comments on Judge's Ruling
MADISON, Wis., Dec. 12 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- Rayovac Corp. (NYSE: ROV) announced today that the company is disappointed with Judge Haight's ruling in the U.S. District Court, Southern District of New York regarding Norelco's complaint against one of Remington Products' television commercials.
While Rayovac is pleased Judge Haight found Remington properly described its Titanium Microscreen Ultra line of electric shaving products as having "titanium-coated trimmer blades," it is disappointed that the judge granted Norelco a temporary restraining order with respect to the commercial on other grounds. Rayovac plans to replace the Remington television commercial in question with another Remington shaver commercial already prepared for the holiday season.
Rayovac Corporation is a global consumer products company with a diverse portfolio of world-class brands, including Rayovac, VARTA and Remington. The Company holds many leading market positions including: the world's leader in hearing aid batteries; the top selling rechargeable battery brand in North America and Europe; and the number one selling brand of men's and women's foil electric razors in North America. Rayovac markets its products in more than 100 countries and trades on the New York Stock Exchange under the ROV symbol.
Philips' Norelco unit issued the following:
Press Release Source: Norelco Consumer Products Company
Court Finds Norelco Likely to Show Remington's Titanium Microscreen Ultra TV Commercial to Be False
Friday December 12, 5:59 pm ET
STAMFORD, Conn.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Dec. 12, 2003--A Federal Court today issued a temporary restraining order requiring Remington Products LLC to stop airing its present television commercial for its Titanium Microscreen Ultra electric shaver.
The Court found that Norelco Consumer Products Company, a division of Philips Electronics North America Corporation, had shown a likelihood of success in proving claims in the Remington commercial to be false.
"We are very pleased with the decision of the Court to enjoin Remington's commercial," said Robert Baird, President of Norelco Consumer Products Company. "We hope that this will put an end to Remington's false advertising campaign."
December 11--Here's a news story involving two shaver rivals:
Source: Norelco Consumer Products Company
Norelco Challenges Remington's False Advertising
Thursday December 11, 9:27 am ET
STAMFORD, Conn.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Dec. 11, 2003--Norelco Consumer Products Company, a division of Philips Electronics North America Corporation, has filed a complaint against Remington Products, LLC, maker of the Remington "Titanium" Razor, challenging Remington's claims concerning the key feature of its new "Titanium" product.
Norelco's complaint challenges a new advertisement for the Remington "Titanium" Microscreen Ultra product, which misleads consumers into believing that it has some "titanium" metal that contributes to the shaving process, providing a unique and superior shave.
"Remington's new advertisement misleads consumers into believing that the shaving components of the Microscreen Ultra are titanium," stated Robert Baird, president of Norelco. "Remington's misleading assault on consumers, especially during this holiday season, is indefensible and cannot be allowed to continue."
December 7--I've updated the Shaver Gallery to change the high-end Braun and Remington models to the Braun Activator 8595 and the Remington Titanium MicroScreen Ultra MS3-3700. I've learned that the reason the Philishave HQ6844 SuperReflex (aka Norelco 6844 Reflex Plus) shaver I mentioned in the November 30 posting is not easy to find on the Internet is because it's a promotional or exclusive model which explains the oversized package this shaver came in. The Philips DAP rep informed me that it's similar to the Philishave HQ6843 or Norelco 6843XL which are easily found on the 'net..
November 30--The December Survey Page questions will be the annual questions I give for the holiday gift giving season for those who are either giving or asking for an electric shaver as a gift. For the first time, I will take part in this survey as my nephew gave obvious hints about wanting a new electric shaver as a gift. So I asked him questions about the type of shaver he would like. The info I got made my concur with Jim Elliott at the Electric Razor Rap message board, where he gave his preferences, and I am giving my nephew a Philishave HQ6844 SuperReflex cord/cordless shaver. I got it today at the Wal-Mart store in Sarnia, Ontario, Canada.
November 26--After a couple of enquiries about the Schick 31DB battery operated shaver I first reported about on July 13 which had become hard to find, I contacted Norelco, which marketed this shaver in the USA. They replied that this shaver has been discontinued. So Schick as an electric shaver brand is dead again. Schick as a blade razor brand is doing very well. Maybe Norelco is coming to its senses. I read that they have been directed to emphasize its parent company Philips more to increase awareness of the Philips brand in the USA. You can find it at http://www.newscenter.philips.com by clicking on Mondial under Publications and look for the headline "Branding Initiative" dated October 20, 2003.
November 25--Thanks to Nick Hand who alerted me that Sunbeam of Australia and New Zealand, which is not affiliated with Sunbeam in the USA, still markets electric shavers for Australia and New Zealand. So I added Sunbeam Australia to the list of shaver companies on line and made the appropriate disclaimer in Sunbeam's listing in the Shaver Brands of the Past page.
November 5--I have revised the mini-polls broken down by shaver models because of new models not previously listed. After a final set of mini-poll results, I've wiped the slates clean and started the new mini-polls broken down by shaver models. The minipoll and minipoll data for favourite shaver brands is still intact and still active. I also have shaver industry news to report with Gillette's 3rd quarter results and the following is about their Braun unit:
-- Braun sales of $293 million for the quarter were 11 percent above those of the year before, while profit declined 5 percent to $22 million. Driving the sales growth was strong demand for men's electric shavers in the U.S. and Japan and the favorable impact of exchange, given Braun's significant presence in Europe. In the U.S., the launch of FreeGlider and Flex XP2 increased Braun's market share by 1.8 percentage points to 21.3 percent. The new top-of-the-line Activator shaver gained the number two share position in Japan after only four weeks on the market. Although sales mix continued to improve, a double-digit percentage increase in marketing to launch new products and the impact of currency on European-based manufacturing costs reduced perating profit in the quarter. For the nine months, sales of $792 million increased 16 percent, and profit was down 9 percent to $43 million, due primarily to greater European export costs and higher warranty-related expense.
November 2--A big thank you to Rahman Jones who E-mailed me on October 31 a list of questions and multiple choice answers about users' receptiveness to a new product to aid in the cleaning up of whiskers or beard trimmings. So, with minor changes, I made his questions the Survey Page questions for November.
October 30--I'm still thinking about what to include in the November Survey Page questions, but I'm leaning towards users' receptiveness to new ideas and innovations in electric shavers and shaver accessories. Because the 1st of November falls on a Saturday this year, I'll be a day or two late in getting the new Survey Page questions up and posting the October results.
October 23--I received an E-mail enquiry from Zhoushan Haishan Electrical Appliance Co., Ltd who from the wording of their letter is seeking business from me. Because I do not sell shavers directly (that's where the sponsored links come in), I did the next best thing which is to include that company, based in China, to the list of shaver companies on line.
October 7--Household Appliance Sales and Service Co. in Niles, Illinois, USA asked that I include their Braun parts link at http://www.1-800-sunbeam.com/braun.html to the list of shaver shops on line. So I did.
October 1--The October Survey Page questions are about shaver brand preferences based on the type the whiskers the user has. Also, I've received word that Rayovac has completed its acquisition of Remington Products Company, LLC which was first announced last August 22.
September 18--I thought I would catch up today on shaver industry news about Remington and Philips:
MADISON, Wis., Sept. 15 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- Rayovac Corp. (NYSE: ROV) Chairman and CEO David A. Jones announces the appointment of Neil P. DeFeo, Remington president and CEO, to the Rayovac Corporation Board of Directors. The appointment of DeFeo is contingent upon the successful closing of the Rayovac purchase of Remington. Rayovac announced on August 22, 2003 that it had reached an agreement with Remington to purchase the company. The transaction is expected to close by September 30, 2003.
"Neil will be a great addition to the Rayovac Board of Directors. His expertise and knowledge of Remington and its markets will prove to be invaluable as we merge the Remington operations into ours," said Dave Jones, Rayovac chairman and CEO. "Neil has had a successful track record of building companies and brands and his insight will be critical as Rayovac continues its product line diversifications and global expansion."
DeFeo has served as Remington president and CEO since 1997. Prior to joining Remington, he worked at the Clorox Company where he held the position of group vice president - U.S. Operations. Before that, Neil worked at Procter and Gamble for 25 years. Over those years, he held a series of senior level management positions. Among his many titles, he served as general manager of New Products and vice president and managing director of Laundry and Cleaning Products Strategic Planning.
Rayovac is one of the world's leading battery and lighting device companies. The Company also markets the number one selling rechargeable brand of battery in the U.S. and Europe and is the world leader in hearing aid batteries. Rayovac trades on the New York Stock Exchange under the ROV symbol.
Certain matters discussed in this news release, with the exception of historical matters, are forward-looking statements within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. These statements are subject to a number of risks, uncertainties and other factors that could cause results to differ materially from those anticipated as of the date of this release. Actual results may differ materially from these statements as a result of (1) changes in external competitive market factors, such as introduction of new product features or technological developments, development of new competitors or competitive brands or competitive promotional activity or spending, (2) changes in consumer demand for the various types of products offered by Rayovac or Remington, (3) changes in the general economic conditions where Rayovac and Remington do business, such as stock market prices, interest rates, currency exchange rates, inflation and raw material costs, (4) our ability to successfully implement manufacturing, distribution and other cost efficiencies, (5) our ability to obtain the regulatory approvals and financing necessary to close the Remington transaction and (6) various other factors, including those discussed herein and those set forth in each of Rayovac's and Remington's most recent Form 10- Q's, Annual Reports on Form 10-K and the prospectus supplement for Rayovac's most recent offering of its common stock
Now for Philps:
Philips To Cut 180 Jobs In The Netherlands
Thursday September 18, 6:18 am ET
Edited Press Release
AMSTERDAM -(Dow Jones)- Dutch Philips Electronics NV said Thursday that management of the company's operations in the Dutch town of Drachten has informed the workforce, the Works Council and the trade unions about the plans for 2004. Approximately 180 jobs are to be phased out next year.
Difficult market conditions, increasing competition and an adverse dollar-euro exchange rate have resulted in the decision by the management to take cost- saving measures and also to transfer part of the assembly operations to the sister factory in Zhuhai (China).
Alexius Collette, plant manager at Philips Drachten, explains: 'Drachten's core competencies are in innovation and knowledge-intensive production, such as the Sensotec shaver. Zhuhai's core competency is in low-cost mass production.
The object of the plans is to improve Philips Drachten's cost position and competitiveness. The management expects to achieve the cost reduction by means of innovative product design, internal efficiency, reduced overheads, a reduction in the cost of materials, and the gradual transfer of part of the final assembly operations from Drachten to Zhuhai.
In 2004 approximately 180 jobs will be shed, 110 as a result of efficiency measures and about 60 as a result of the transfer of assembly operations from Drachten to China.
The management has indicated that the reduction in the workforce will largely take the form of temporary contracts not being renewed, natural wastage and the use of flexible duty rosters in production. Unfortunately, compulsory redundancies cannot be ruled out in advance. For these employees Philips will make every effort to provide assistance in finding other employment, additional training and a responsible social compensation plan (CAO-RAP). Alexius Collette: 'We shall communicate the proposed plans at an early stage. In this way we can give our employees optimum support and assistance in finding other employment.'
(end of pasted news stories) The Drachten factory makes high-end Philishave and Norelco shavers. The Zhuhai factory makes low end shavers.
September 1--Most of this month's Survey Page questions were submitted by David Mulhern as he noticed that I did not ask the type of questions like the ones he submitted yet. Thanks, David. The rest of the questions are about the recently introduced minipolls on this web site.
August 26--After the problem with Comcast's web hosting, I decided to activate the free Bravenet web hosting feature and start phasing them in on some of the Electric Shaver Page web pages. Because it is Bravenet's 'free' service I am using, there will be a banner ad which Bravenet inserts on top of the pages which they host. I hope you won't mind them.
August 24--After Comcast restricted access to the web pages they host for me for 24 hours because there was too much traffic, I transferred two web sites they hosted, the current Tell Mr. Steel Beard for this year and the news page, to my main web host, InterActiVision. I apologize for the problem. I also cut down on the older news items so they begin with January 2002.
August 22--Major news story as Remington Products has been sold:
Press Release Source: Rayovac Corp.; Remington Products Company, LLC; Vestar Capital Partners
Rayovac to Acquire Remington Products Company
Friday August 22, 6:00 am ET
MADISON, Wis., Aug. 22 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- (NYSE: ROV) Rayovac Corp. and Remington Products Company, LLC announced today that Rayovac Corp. has entered into an agreement to purchase the Remington Products Company for approximately $322 million, including the assumption of debt. Remington Products Company, headquartered in Bridgeport, Connecticut, is the number one selling brand in the U.S. in the combined dry shaving and personal grooming products categories on a unit basis. The all-cash transaction is expected to close within the next 60 days.
Remington, owned by the Kiam family and Vestar Capital Partners since 1996, designs and distributes battery-powered electric shavers and accessories, grooming products, hair care appliances and other small electrical consumer appliances. The company has had an impressive record of product innovation throughout its history, including the introduction in 1937 of the world's first electric shaver and continuing today with new ergonomic designs and styling features. The Remington brand dates back to 1816, making it one of the oldest consumer brands. For the last twelve months ending June 30, 2003, Remington reported sales of $360.3 million, net income of $20.2 million and earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization (EBITDA) of approximately $47.0 million. See Table 1 for the reconciliation of GAAP net income to EBITDA.
"Remington is a well-known and respected brand with a sound reputation for quality and performance," said David Jones, Rayovac chairman and CEO. "Remington brings to Rayovac a strong record of solid growth and a line of shaving, grooming and personal care products that will provide exciting diversification to our current product offerings," he said.
"Rayovac and Remington share a similar customer base, our products are sold through many of the same distribution channels and we're both firmly committed to technology and product innovation," added Jones.
Rayovac estimates the acquisition will be accretive in fiscal 2004. The transaction is subject to regulatory approval. Rayovac anticipates financing a substantial portion of the transaction with subordinated debt, and the company has secured bridge financing in the event it is necessary.
"We are very pleased to become part of the Rayovac family," said Neil DeFeo, chairman, CEO and president of Remington Products Company. "I believe the combined strengths of our two companies and the complementary nature of our customers, distribution and corporate philosophies will result in a new organization that is even stronger and better poised for future success."
"Remington is one of the world's most storied consumer brands," Vestar Managing Director Norman W. Alpert noted. "Thanks to the company's dedicated employees, skilled management team, seasoned board and supportive investors, Remington is entering a new and exciting chapter in the company's history. We also wish to acknowledge the legacy of Victor Kiam and his family, whose vision and creativity established the basis for this successful investment."
The former Remington CEO and pitchman's son, Tory Kiam, explained that his family had a rewarding 24-year association with the company and is pleased with the decision to transfer ownership to Rayovac. "Remington's management team, board and Vestar displayed tremendous professionalism and leadership over the past seven years," Kiam said. "My father would have been very proud of the successes this company has achieved and the bright future it has secured with today's announcement."
Citigroup Global Markets Inc., acted as advisor to Rayovac on the Remington transaction. Bear, Stearns & Co. Inc. was the financial advisor to Remington.
More About Remington
Remington products are sold in more than 20,000 retail outlets in the United States. More than 70 percent of Remington's sales are in North America. Remington's core North American shaving and grooming products business has grown an average of 18 percent per year from 1998 through 2002. Internationally, Remington products are sold through a network of subsidiaries and distributors in more than 85 countries.
The Remington product line includes electric rotary and foil dry shavers for men and women, beard and mustache trimmers and haircut kits. They also offer personal grooming products for men and women and small electronic appliances such as hair dryers, stylers, hot rollers and lighted mirrors. Remington branded products are sold in the U.S. and internationally through mass merchandisers, catalog showrooms, drug stores, department stores, television direct to consumers, online retailing and through the company's network of service stores.
With close to $1 billion in sales, Rayovac has more than doubled its revenues over the last six years and has evolved from a predominantly North American company into a global organization with approximately 60 percent of its sales generated from outside the U.S.
In 1999, Rayovac acquired ROV Ltd., a Latin American battery company that held the rights to the Rayovac name in Latin America (except Brazil) and certain countries in the Middle East and Africa. This acquisition consolidated Rayovac's rights to the Rayovac brand around the world (except Brazil), gave the Company a powerful market presence in Latin America and opened the doors to new distribution.
In October 2002, Rayovac further expanded its global presence by acquiring the worldwide consumer battery business of VARTA AG, a German company with significant market positions throughout Europe and in Latin America.
Today, Rayovac is one of the world's leading battery and lighting device companies. The Company also markets the number one selling rechargeable brand of battery in the U.S. and Europe and is the world leader in hearing aid batteries. Rayovac trades on the New York Stock Exchange under the ROV symbol.
Vestar Capital Partners is a leading investment firm specializing in management buyouts, recapitalizations and growth capital investments. Vestar's investment strategy is targeted towards middle-market companies with valuations in the $200 million to $2 billion range. Since the firm's founding in 1988, Vestar has completed over thirty-five investments in companies with a total value exceeding $11 billion. These companies have varied in size and geography and span a broad range of industries. Vestar's principals have had meaningful experience with branded and consumer products companies, and have completed investments in leading companies including: Prestone Products, Birdseye Foods, St. John Apparel, Celestial Seasonings, Sun Apparel (Polo Jeans) and Cluett American (Gold Toe Brands). Vestar currently manages a committed equity capital pool of $4 billion and has offices in New York City, Denver, Paris and Milan.
August 1--The August Survey Page questions look inward as the questions are about this web site.
July 13--WARNING! Mr. Steel Beard rant ahead!--WHAT IS NORELCO THINKING ABOUT????? Today I walked into the local Wal-Mart and I naturally looked at the shaver selection when I see a new battery operated shaver model which put me in shock. A SCHICK ELECTRIC SHAVER!!! Yes, Schick is back as an electric shaver brand. It's marketed by Norelco Consumer Products Company which is the Philips DAP unit for the USA. To make things more complicated it's on a two-head Double Action Lift & Cut rotary model, the first time that the Schick brand is used by Philips on a Philishave/Norelco type rotary shaver! The shaver is the model 31DB and is similar to the Philishave HQ30 you can find in the Philishave web site. I've been hoping that Philips DAP would phase in the Philishave name to eventually take the place of Norelco, a brand used by Philips only in the USA. But NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! First they introduce a more contemporary Norelco logo and now they further muddy up the waters by bringing back the Schick name on electric shavers when I thought the purpose of Philips buying the Schick personal care appliance business was to kill off a competitor! Get someone from Amsterdam, most notably Philips President and CEO Gerard Kleisterlee, to go to Stamford, Connecticut, USA to get the Norelco executives to come to their senses! End of rant. On a more personal note, I had a minor catastrophe when I turned on the computer and POP! I looked inside the computer and there was no obvious damage so I returned to the computer store I work at to get a new 300 watt ATX power supply. I installed the new power supply myself. Problem solved. BTW, to give a small correction to the newspaper articles which mention me originating from the Detroit Free Press and the Knight Ridder News Service, I'm not a computer technician, I'm more of a sales and accounting manager. But I've been around dismantled computers long enough to know what to do when I get a major computer problem.
July 7--The Atlanta Journal-Constitution has picked up the electric shaver story mentioning this web site which was originally published in The Detroit Free Press. Of course, I've added the new link to the 'Awards and Notable Mention' page.
July 1--The July Survey Page questions are about least favourite shavers, what influences shaver buying decisions and asks what readers think of the new Norelco logo which was just introduced. Norelco is the brand name used in the USA only instead of Philishave for Philips DAP's men's personal care appliances.
June 25--I hope I didn't need to do this, but after someone used the minipoll 22 times to answer the same question early this morning, I set the minipoll to limit votes to one per day. I also edited the affected minipoll so only one of the 22 votes counted. Sorry.
June 19--I've added Hammacher Schlemmer, world famous for selling unique items and which sold the first electric shavers, as a sponsored link.
June 17--The Lexington (Kentucky) Herald-Leader which, like the Detroit Free Press, is owned by Knight-Ridder has picked up the Free Press story and mentioned this web site. I've added a link to the 'Awards and Notable Mention' page. I've just created a primitive page to bring you the first Mini-Poll results for best and worst shavers. I'll update the results twice a month and I hope to eventually improve this page visually. Click here to see it.
June 2--I've added a link in the 'other' section for KosherShaver which offers to remove the lifters from Philishave/Norelco Lift & Cut cutters to give peace of mind for traditional Jews who feel uneasy about Philishave/Norelco Lift & Cut shavers nicking whiskers before cutting them.
June 1--The June Survey Page questions are again devoted to shavers as either graduation or Father's Day gifts as it's that time of year. Based on popular demand for some kind of shaver ratings report, I decided to launch a series of minipolls which will all be devoted to best and worst shavers broken down by brand and product line for current models. I can have up to 10 polls which show up at random and results for each mini-poll are accessable. But you can only see one mini-poll at a time, but you can refresh the page to get the other mini-polls. I placed the mini-poll on the separate web page linked to the home page. Due to poll limitations, I will only devote the top four brands of shavers--Philishave/Norelco, Braun, Remington and Panasonic/National-- broken down by currently available product lines.
May 26--I've added a new sponsored link in the sponsors link frame, The Sharper Image which is famous for offering high-end products including exclusive high-end electric shavers. I did an Ad Of The Week for a Sharper Image ad awhile back. To make room, I deleted three sponsors links which were not performing. I also added in the Shaving History links a link to a French site called Razorland which, while it is in French, does offer pictures of old shavers which anyone can understand. There is a translator program called Babel Fish which, whilst not perfect, does allow you to translate the web site so you can reasonably understand it.
May 19--I've added links to the Detroit Free Press articles about electric shavers in the "other" section. It mentioned the new high-end Panasonic/National product line known as either the Pro-Curve or Lamdash depending on which country you are in. So I've revised the shaver gallery to include the new ES8092nc in that product line.
May 18--The Detroit Free Press included an article about me in today's issue. So I included the link in the 'Awards and Notable Mention' section. While I was at it, I replaced the dead links on two of the links with my own newspaper clipping scans for articles in The Village Voice and The Flint Journal. The printed article in the Detroit Free Press included a mention of my lecture this Wednesday in the Flint Public Library. I wonder (hopefully) if room 205 in the library will be big enough to hold the audence for my lecture. I know the library has enough chairs.
May 9--Time to catch up on shaver industry news, first Gillette has issued their results for the 1st quarter of 2003. The following report covers only their Braun A.G. unit:
-- Braun sales of $214 million for the quarter grew 15 percent.
The business ran at a $6 million operating loss in the quarter, due to a higher warranty accrual related in part to extended warranties on electronic appliances sold in Europe.
Higher European-based manufacturing costs and expenses related to Functional Excellence also reduced profit. The higher sales reflected strong growth of men's electric shavers in North America and women's hair epilators in developing markets in Asia, Africa and the Middle East. Sales growth was restrained by soft consumer demand in Europe. The Company noted that Braun sales in the first quarter last year benefited from the bankruptcy of a key household small appliance competitor.
(end of pasted report of Gillette) I believe that the unnamed competitor which went bankrupt was Sunbeam (USA). Now for legal news from Germany in which Philips won a legal battle in Germany against Remington:
German Court Confirms Positive Decision on Triple Head Rotary Shavers for Philips
Amsterdam, The Netherlands and Cologne, Germany May 9, 2003 Royal Philips Electronics (AEX:PHI, NYSE:PHG) today announced that the Cologne Court of Appeals ("Oberlandesgericht") in Germany confirmed a preliminary injunction obtained by Philips in August 2002 prohibiting Remington from introducing and selling triple head rotary shavers in Germany.
We are pleased with this decision on one of our most important markets for triple head rotary shavers - it is a positive sign for Philips, said Niels Onkenhout, CEO of the Business Unit Shaving and Beauty of Philips Domestic Appliances and Personal Care. "Since its first introduction about thirty years ago, we have continuously invested in the unique design of one of the icons of Philips, the Philishave triple headed razor. Since then, hundreds of millions of Philishaves have been sold, an average of 700 products per hour everyday, making Philishave the number one in electric razor shaving over its 63 year history. People recognise the shape of our three-headed Philishave as Philips and can be confused by identical products in the market. We shall do everything possible to avoid that confusion so that our customers can continue to buy the quality they expect.
The ruling of the Cologne Court of Appeals in Germany was in favour of Philips after the earlier decision of the European Court of Justice (ECJ) dated 18 June 2002 setting the standards to register shape marks.
May 1--The May Survey Page questions will ask about electric shaver preferences broken down by age groups. On May 21, I will be lecturing on The Art of Collecting at the Flint Public Library in Flint, Michigan's Cultural Center. Details at http://www.flint.lib.mi.us/fpl.html Click on the calendar for the main library and click on May 21 under The Art Of Collecting for details.
April 24--I have a new link to report as they asked that I include it. It's for Cell Pack Solutions Ltd. which offers replacement batteries and offers a refurbishment service. They are at http://www.cellpacksolutions.com and I included it in the 'other' section.
April 7--Shaver industry news:
Dow Jones Business News
Philips To Relocate Part Of Razor Production To China
Monday April 7, 6:04 am ET
AMSTERDAM -(Dow Jones)- Dutch Philips Electronics NV said Monday that it plans to relocate part of its production of electronic razors to China sometime after 2005.
As a result, the company will lower production capacity at a production plant in Drachten, in the north of the Netherlands. A spokesman for Philips said he couldn't rule out exceptional charges to cover for that adjustment.
The spokesman couldn't provide any financial details.
A Dutch local newspaper reported Monday that Philips could cut several hundred jobs at its Drachten plant, which has a workforce of about 2,000.
Last week, Philips said it would increase the production capacity of its semiconductor plant in China.
-By A.J. Hesselink, Dow Jones Newswires
April 3--Thanks to an E-mail tip, I've added the Seiko subsidiary which markets electric shavers at http://www.seiko-syd.co.jp/shaver/index.html to the list of shaver companies on line. This web site is in Japanese.
April 1--The April Survey Page questions will be about pre-shave preparations.
March 27--I have sad shaver industry news to report. Eddie Jaffe, a press agent famous for both his celebrity clients and his wild imagination died Tuesday, March 25 at age 89 after a long illness. In the shaver industry, he is famous for getting one of his clients, American football star Joe Namath, US$10,000 to shave off his Fu Manchu moustache in a TV commercial for Schick electric shavers.
March 11--E-mail tips inspired me to update the list of shaver company web sites to include the home page for Hitachi's appliance division at http://www.hitachi-hl.com and to add a new (well, a century old) appliance store in Santa Rosa, California, Hardisty's Homewares at http://www.hardistys.com to the list of shaver shops on line.
March 3--Shaver industry news as there is a changing of the guard at Philips DAP:
Philips appoints Johan van Splunter to succeed Ad Veenhof as CEO of domestic appliance division
Amsterdam, The Netherlands, March 3, 2003 Royal Philips Electronics (AEX: PHI, NYSE: PHG) today announced that Mr. Ad Veenhof (57), Senior Vice President and member of the Group Management Committee, and CEO of Philips Domestic Appliances and Personal Care (DAP) division since 1996, has expressed a wish to step down from Philips after more than 30 years with the company. He will leave as of May 1, 2003.
Mr. Veenhof will be succeeded by Johan van Splunter (57), currently CEO of Philips in Asia. Mr. van Splunter joined Philips in 1969 in DAP, followed by an international career, including a period of eleven years in senior management positions at Grundig, before returning to Philips in 1997. Mr. Van Splunter will also take up his new role as of May 1, 2003.
Johan A van Splunter (57)
Mr. Johan A Van Splunter was born on 24 March 1945 in Beverwijk, The Netherlands and studied Business Economics at the University of Amsterdam. Mr. Van Splunter started to work for Philips, The Netherlands, in 1969 as Product Manager in the Personal Care Division. In 1976 he became Managing Director, Consumer Division for Philips Mexico. During this time Philips pioneered with the first industrial plants in the Mexican border zone.
In 1985 he moved to Germany where he became Managing Director at Grundig and later Executive Vice President and member of the Board of Management. Mr. van Splunter was instrumental in the change of manufacturing locations from Western to Eastern Europe when the communist bloc opened after the fall of the Berlin Wall.
In 1997 he moved to Johannesburg as Chairman & CEO of Philips for Southern Africa and in 1999 moved to Singapore to become President and Chairman of Philips Electronics Asia Pacific region. In Singapore, he is a member of the Board of the Economic Review Committee and Chairman of the Sub-Committee for Manufacturing.
Johan is married and has two daughters. He is fluent in Dutch, English, French, Spanish and German.
(end of pasted news posting) Congratulations, Mr. Van Splunter and enjoy your retirement, Mr. Veenhof.
March 2--Because I've been getting questions from those concerned with "razor bumps", I decided that the March Survey Page questions will be devoted to shaver preferences based on the type of whiskers they have. March is also the month (unless I get some late 1990s vintage shaver ads quickly) that the cycle of Ads Of The Week in sequence beginning with the 1930s on October 2000 will finally end. After that, I'll finally get around to posting Ad Of The Week submissions I received in which they would otherwise appear out of sequence. After that, I'll start reruns and show new ads in no particular order. So if you have a vintage shaver ad to submit, please E-mail it to me.
February 5--A Tell Mr. Steel Beard submission included a plug for the Electric Shaver Shop of Van Nuys, California, USA so I added that store to the list of electric shaver shops on line.
February 2--The February Survey Page questions are for those who use wet/dry electric shavers designed for use in the shower. Looking back at the old Survey Page questions, I decided that these were the oldest questions which I haven't repeated recently. If you have any suggestions for Survey Page questions for future months, please let me know.
January 21--While this major story is not electric shaver related, it is definitely shaving related as the #2 blade razor company has been sold:
Energizer Holdings, Inc. Acquires Schick-Wilkinson Sword
Tuesday January 21, 2:30 am ET
ST. LOUIS, Jan. 21 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- Energizer Holdings, Inc. (NYSE: ENR - News), today announced that it has reached a definitive agreement to purchase the Schick-Wilkinson Sword business from Pfizer Inc. (NYSE: PFE - News) for $930 million. Banc of America Securities advised Energizer on the transaction.
Schick-Wilkinson Sword is the second largest manufacturer and marketer of men's and women's wet shave products in the world. Its portfolio of products, which currently includes Xtreme 3, Protector, Slim Twin and Silk Effects, has been well-known throughout the world for over 75 years, with a reputation for high quality and innovation in shaving technology. The company operates in over 80 countries and has an estimated 18% market share of the global wet shaving business. Its primary markets are Europe, the United States and Japan. Schick had 2002 sales of approximately $650 million and earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization of over $100 million.
"Schick-Wilkinson Sword is an attractive business in a category with dollar sales growth and stable margins that leverages our core competencies," said Pat Mulcahy, chief executive officer of Energizer. "Energizer and Schick are very compatible, with many common customers, and similar distribution channels, high speed manufacturing and product innovation capabilities, and corporate cultures."
The company estimates the acquisition will be accretive to fiscal 2004 results. Due to purchase accounting requirements, primarily related to inventory valuation, the acquisition will be dilutive to earnings for the first turn of acquired inventory, which will result in a significant reduction in Energizer's reported results in the first full quarter following the closing of the transaction.
The transaction is subject to governmental and regulatory approvals in a number of jurisdictions, as well as other customary conditions. Energizer currently expects the transaction to close in the spring.
The transaction will be financed through cash and a $550 million 364-Day Bridge Loan arranged jointly by Bank One and Bank of America with the remainder provided from existing credit facilities totaling $520 million.
Energizer will conduct a live webcast to discuss the Schick acquisition on Tuesday, January 21 at 11:00 EST. To listen, please visit the Investor Relations section of the company's website or dial 800-374-0674, conference identification 7731464. A replay will be available shortly after the call through January 28. The replay number is 800-642-1687, conference identification 7731464. In addition, the replay can be heard at www.energizer.com .
Energizer Holdings, Inc., headquartered in St. Louis, Missouri, is one of the world's largest manufacturers of primary batteries and flashlights and a global leader in the dynamic business of providing portable power.
Statements in this press release that are not historical, particularly statements regarding shaving category growth and margin stability, the compatibility of the Schick and Energizer businesses, the accretive nature of the acquisition and its impact on earnings dilution, may be forward-looking statements within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. The Company cautions readers not to place undue reliance on any forward-looking statements, which speak only as of the date made.
Energizer advises readers that various risks and uncertainties could affect its financial performance and that of the Schick business and could cause actual results to differ materially from those anticipated or projected. Final results for Schick's 2002 fiscal year have not yet been determined, and could be impacted by financial and other adjustments prior to the final disclosure of year-end results by Pfizer, Inc., the current owner of that business. Continuing dollar sales growth and margin stability in the wet shave category may be impacted by general economic or political conditions, consumer demand, competitive pressure and adverse governmental regulation. The accretive impact of the acquisition on Energizer's fiscal 2004 results may be different from that anticipated, or may be offset by the impact of other significant events or results. Similarly, the dilutive impact on earnings may be impacted by changes in purchase accounting requirements, inventory levels, and inventory valuation levels.
Additional risks and uncertainties include those detailed from time to time in Energizer's publicly filed documents, including Energizer's Registration Statement on Form 10, its Annual Report on Form 10-K for the year ended September 30, 2002, and its Current Report on Form 8-K dated April 25, 2000.
(end of pasted news release from Energizer)
This means I need to revise my web page devoted to Col. Jacob Schick who founded the razor company mentioned above and who invented the electric shaver, creating a now-defunct shaver company to market it.
January 1--First, I want to wish everyone a Happy New Year. I'm happy with the traffic the Electric Shaver Page received, averaging over 1000 hits a day before Christmas. Also, I had over 150 responses to the December Survey Page questions. The January Survey Page questions will be, as last year, about electric shavers received as a gift in December. The new Tell Mr. Steel Beard page for 2003 will be prepared after I receive the first submission for the new year.
December 26--Shaver industry news from China:
Chinese Court Backs Petition By Philips on Razor Patent
BEIJING -- An appeals court in China has upheld a petition from Dutch electronics firm Philips Electronics NV to cancel the patent of a Chinese- designed electric razor.
The court's decision strikes a further blow against piracy and counterfeiting, which remains rampant in China despite the introduction of tougher trademark, patent and copyright laws.
The ruling overturns a previous decision by China's intellectual property rights watchdog that initially dismissed Philips' challenge to the patent of the locally designed razor. A review committee of China's State Intellectual Property Office, or SIPO, previously found that the two electric razors were clearly different in design and shape and wouldn't confuse customers.
Beijing First Intermediate People's Court ruled that the design of the rival Chinese electric shaver did infringe Philips' patent, the official Xinhua News Agency reported Thursday.
Philips has been a major investor in China, producing about $5 billion worth of goods in the country each year from manufacturing facilities set up since the early 1980s. Last year, output at the 23 factories Philips operates in China accounted for 20% of the company's total global output.
Although much of that production is exported, upholding patents from Chinese rivals provides protection for foreign companies such as Philips which have invested heavily in China.
China agreed to improve its protection of intellectual property rights, or IPR, as part of its obligations to the World Trade Organization. China joined the global trade group in December last year, and quickly moved to strengthen local IPR laws.
However, concerns remain that China hasn't committed enough investigative and judicial resources to tackle the high levels of piracy and counterfeiting within the country.
December 19--I've discovered that the Philishave web site at http://www.philishave.com now offers product availability for each country, making the now outdated page I maintained for product availability for the USA, Canada, Europe and Japan unnecessary so I deleted it.
December 15--I have an update to the November 24 posting on the James Bond movie "Die Another Day" which you can see as an addendum of the November 24 posting.
December 5--I'm now getting more E-mail (including Tell Mr. Steel Beard submissions) than I can immediately handle so it's taking longer than a couple of days to reply to them. So please be patient.
December 1--Now that the holiday gift giving season is here, the December Survey Page questions will be about preferences for those who plan to either give or receive an electric shaver as a gift.
November 26--Electric shaver industry news and great news for classic TV commercial fans in the USA:
Norelco Brings Back Sledding Santa
STAMFORD, Conn. (November 26) -- Norelco is slated to bring back its classic Santa advertising campaign, which last aired in 1996. Due to show during the Dec. 2 broadcast of ABCs Monday Night Football, the new series intends to revitalize the campaign Norelco put on the holiday advertising map more than 40 years ago. The Norelco Santa made his debut in December 1961, gliding down snow banks on a sled made of floating shaver heads, and was updated over the years to reflect changes in product, as well as the advance of color television. The new ads primarily target female gift givers and will run through the week of the Christmas holiday, referring viewers to Norelcos Web site, norelco.com.
November 24--I've just seen the new James Bond film "Die Another Day" at the nearby National Amusements Showcase Cinemas Flint West in Flint, Michigan USA. For James Bond fans, it's a great film. My interest in the film is because of the well-publicised product placement of the Philishave Sensotec/Norelco Spectra shaver in this film. Early on in the film, whilst staying in a Hong Kong hotel suite, Bond grooms himself with the aforementioned shaver. Seeing it in the USA, the canister packaging shown in the film bears the Norelco logo. To save me a trip across the Blue Water Bridge to see the same film in Sarnia, Ontario, Canada at the Famous Players Lambton 9 Cinemas, I'm asking those who have seen this film outside the USA to contact me at email@example.com to tell me if the shaver packaging shown in the film outside the USA bears the Philishave logo or not. I believe the packaging would look like that shown at http://www.shavercentre.com/8894packaging.html. By the way, that's not the only product placement of an electric shaver in this film. In an abandoned underground station in London, England where Pierce Brosnan as James Bond and John Cleese as Q see James Bond's new Aston Martin car, there is an old 1950s billboard advertisement for the Philishave two-headed 'egg' shaver, the original two-headed Philishave/Norelco shaver. Philishave/Norelco has been in a James Bond film before. Check out this bonus Ad Of The Week I've placed temporarily at http://mywebpages.comcast.net/steelbeard1/adjamesbond.htm Update dated November 26: I got this report from Ireland: In the movie at least here in Ireland, possible the rest of Europe too, the packaging for the Razor is by Philishave. It's a translucent case with the Philishave logo on the top. Now the casing for the product here in Ireland is not the same as in the movie at all! It's a silver cardboard case with the 007 logo on the side, and a picture of the shaver on the front. The case is in 3d and very very well designed, hard to properly describe. I have only seen it in stores, not yet purchased. I've been hinting at the wife!! My thanks to Howard Shortt for this report. That covers Europe, I believe. I'm still waiting for a report from Canada as well as other parts of the world. Update dated December 15: Because I got no feedback from Canada, I decided to see "Die Another Day" for myself at the Famous Players Lambton 9. The shaver packaging in the Hong Kong scene is the same as described above by Howard Shortt from Ireland and I can ad that the Philishave logo also appears on the translucent canister which shows the base inside the canister that the shaver was mounted in. I also found details I missed the first time I saw it in which two Philishave ads appear in the abandoned subway station. The aforementioned ad is a 1953 Christmas ad and the ad I missed the first time is a 1948 single-head egg shaver. For December 15 through 28 only, I'm showing both ads in the Ad Of The Week.
November 20--I have been informed by the new owner of The Appliance Connection at http://www.TheApplianceConnection.net in Norcross, Georgia, USA, who used to operate georgiaservicecenter.com, that the latter URL is now a dead link so I replaced the Georgia Service Center listing with the listing for The Appliance Connection.
November 11--In response to the news story which I posted on November 8, the Norelco division of Philips issued the following statement:
Announcement From Norelco Consumer Products Company
Thursday November 7, 7:47 pm ET
STAMFORD, Conn.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Nov. 7, 2002--The following is an announcement made today by the Norelco Consumer Products Company:
"The Norelco Consumer Products Company has investigated the recent news reports and can assure consumers and retailers that no Norelco products were involved in the reported incidents. The company also emphasized that its electric shavers are sold in tamper-proof packaging to insure product safety and quality."
November 8--Don't pick up any electric shaver you see left behind and make sure the shaver you buy at the store is factory sealed. This URL tells why: http://www.usatoday.com/news/nation/2002-11-07-exploding-razors_x.htm
November 1--I'm finally caught up on the backlog of E-mail after the computer crash. Some of the software still requires some fine tuning which I'm still waiting for customer support to E-mail me back with how to do it, but everything is back to normal. The November Survey Page questions will be about favourite and least favourite shavers from the top four shaver companies--Philips (Philishave/Norelco), Braun, Remington and Matsushita (Panasonic/National). The choices will be based on product lines currently available and is intended to be a guide for holiday shoppers because the holiday shopping season is fast approaching.
October 24--My apologies as I've fallen behind again in answering E-mail and updating the Electric Shaver Page. I had a minor setback in getting my computer back in shape. I couldn't reinstall my sound card software so I sprung for a new sound card, a Sound Blaster Live this time. I have full multimedia capabilities again but it took me longer than expected. On a future Ad Of The Week, expect to hear an ad as well as see a print ad. And, once again, if I haven't replied to your note yet, please be patient.
October 23--I finally reached the point where I can begin to weed through a week's worth of unanswered E-mail, including Tell Mr. Steel Beard submissions. Because of the huge backlog, it may take awhile before I can get through all of them. So again, please be patient. I got the essential programs restored on the repaired computer. The non-essential programs I will restore when I need to use them. So for now, I can finally concentrate on using the computer instead of fixing it.
October 21--Just a quick note to say I've reinstalled the 1st Page 2000 web publisher I usually use today. I've previously found where AOLpress and the FTP software are on the hard drive so that's how I quickly posted yesterday's note here. I'll keep you posted as to when everything will be back to normal.
October 20--BULLETIN! MAJOR COMPUTER CRASH! Last night, the computer suffered a major crash which requires having to fix the computer big time. Fortunately no data was lost, but because the master hard drive was 3/4 full, I felt it was time to get a new Seagate 40GB hard drive for the new master drive. After transferring the data from the old slave drive to the new master drive, I made the old master drive the new slave drive. Then comes the long process of restoration and reinstalling the programs. Needless to say, I will not be updating the Electric Shaver Page for at least a couple of days until the computer's files are fully restored. So please be patient.
October 7--The long awaited issue of Consumer Reports has arrived! The November 2002 issue has the report on electric shavers on page 49. Canadian editions of Consumer Reports have a centerfold insert showing differences between models sold in the USA and models sold in Canada.
October 6--While the global Philishave web site at http://www.philishave.com has not yet been updated to include the 2002/03 offerings, their new Sensotec line is up as part of a cross-promotion with the new James Bond movie "Die Another Day". The URL is at http://www.philips.com/sensotec/ and the Norelco web site in the USA has a similar page to promote the same movie and their new Spectra shaver line (same as the Sensotec) at http://www.norelco.com/jamesbond/ The Philishave Sensotec/Norelco Spectra shaver model 8894 used by James Bond in that movie. I've also updated the shaver gallery page you can see directly at http://mywebpages.comcast.net/steelbeard1/gallery.htm to include the Philishave Sensotec model HQ8894 as the high-end Philips shaver as well as the Braun Syncro 7680 as Braun's high-end shaver and the Panasonic ES8026nc as Panasonic/National's high-end shaver. I also fixed some dead links I found. If you find any dead links I haven't found yet, please let me know.
October 1--The October Survey Pages are up and the questions are about what influences your choice of electric shavers and, because an upcoming issue of Consumer Reports magazine will have an article on electric shavers, if you plan on reading this article when the issue of the magazine becomes available. By request of one of the Electric Shaver Page's sponsors who is concerned about a dropoff in hits, I've added a link to the sponsors' link banners on the main home page in case a search engine shows only the main home page without the sponsors' link frame included.
September 9--I've added a web site with links to on-line shops which is Mens-eShaving.com. I also have shaver industry news from Germany:
German Court Grants Philips Preliminary Injunction Against Remington
Ruling Prohibits Introduction of Triple Headed Shaver by Remington in Germany
Amsterdam, The Netherlands and Cologne, Germany - September 9, 2002 - Royal Philips Electronics (AEX:PHI, NYSE:PHG) today announced that it has been granted a preliminary injunction from the German court (Landgericht) in Cologne, prohibiting Remington from introducing triple head rotary shavers in Germany, pending a final decision.
The ruling follows an earlier decision of the European Court of Justice in Luxembourg to leave the final ruling on trademark infringement by Remington on Philips' three headed shaver shape to the national European Courts. Philips believes the German court's decision to grant the injunction is an indication of the validity of their complaint against Remington.
"We are pleased with this preliminary injunction, and await the court's final decision on the matter with interest," said Eric Bouts, CEO of the Business Unit Male Shaving and Grooming of Philips Domestic Appliances and Personal Care. Since its first introduction some thirty years ago we have invested continuously in the quality and the design of one of the icons of Philips, the Philishave. Consumers recognize the form of our three headed Philishave as Philips, and we would like to avoid confusion in the market."
September 3--I was alerted to a comic strip which I read and enjoyed. Because it's related to electric shavers, I thought I'd share it with everyone. It's from last Saturday's installment of The Born Loser by Art & Chip Sansom and you can see it at http://www.comics.com/comics/bornloser/archive/bornloser-20020831.html
September 1--The September Survey Page questions are up and the questions are about what shaver features are important to you when buying a shaver. I have a new page up devoted to message boards and there is another message board devoted to electric shavers, the Electric Razor Rap which you can see at http://pub56.ezboard.com/belectricrazorrap. On this holiday weekend, I've been receiving more E-mail, including Tell Mr. Steel Beard submissions, than I can usually handle in a couple of days. So please be patient as I go through all the E-mail I've received.
August 1--The August Survey Page questions are up and, as mentioned earlier, is about buying habits now that the new shaver models are coming out. I've added a link to a message board about beards where endorsements for this web site have been posted. The link is in the 'other' section and is for the Beard Board which you can reach directly at http://pub83.ezboard.com/bjefffsbeardboard
July 1--The July Survey Page questions are now up and is about those who use more than one shaver regularly. I've already decided that the August Survey Page questions will be about new shaver models now that the new Sensotec/Spectra line of Philishave/Norelco shavers are being talked about. About last week's lecture in Clio, I had a good time and we had a small turnout. The hot weather combined with a power failure cut short the lecture, but everyone had fun.
June 27--Here is shaver industry news:
Robert P. Baird, Jr., Named President of Norelco Consumer Products Company
Will Also Lead Philips Domestic Appliances & Personal Care Businesses in North America
STAMFORD, Conn.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--June 27, 2002--Robert P. Baird, Jr., has been named president of the nation's leading manufacturer of men's electric razors, Norelco Consumer Products Company, a division of Philips Electronics North America.
He succeeds Patrick Dinley, a 26-year Norelco veteran who retired earlier in the year.
In his new role, Baird is responsible for leading all aspects of product innovation, sales, marketing and distribution for Norelco's category-leading electric razors, beard and moustache trimmers and hair clippers. Later this year, he will preside over the launch of the company's highly anticipated Norelco Spectra Shaving System, the world's first razor to feature nine comfort settings.
Additionally, Baird will oversee Philips Domestic Appliances & Personal Care (DAP) business lines in North America, including: women's shaving and grooming, kitchen appliances, body & beauty, food & beverage and home environment care products which carry the Philips brand name.
"Norelco and Philips are brands that have led the way by driving innovations that exceed consumer expectations," said Baird. "Our focus is on enhancing our strong leadership position by continuing to surprise people with new technologies that change their lives in great and very personal ways."
Prior his arrival at Norelco, Baird was a consultant at Egon Zehnder International, the world's third largest executive recruitment and consultancy firm. In this role, Baird worked with the consumer marketing industry's premier leaders providing counsel on management assessment, talent management and organizational design.
Baird has also spent 15 years in global management and marketing positions with leading multinational corporations. He served as vice president and general manager at Samsonite, where he drove strong growth and product innovation for the company's largest global business, soft luggage. Baird has also led marketing activity for General Motors' flagship brands, Cadillac Seville and Eldorado, and held management positions with leading consumer goods companies such as Scott Paper, Bristol Myers, Procter & Gamble and General Electric.
Baird holds a master of business administration degree from the J. L. Kellogg School at Northwestern University and a bachelor of arts degree from St. Lawrence University. Born in Michigan, he resides in Old Greenwich with his wife and three children.
Norelco is a leading manufacturer of men's personal grooming products, including electric razors, beard and moustache trimmers and personal groomers. Over the past 50 years, Norelco has achieved many key milestones, including the introduction of the modern electric razors in 1967 with the launch of the Tripleheader® razor. Norelco continues to lead all electric razor manufacturers. Norelco is dedicated to developing ingenious men's grooming solutions through extensive research, leading-edge technology and insightful innovation.
Norelco's parent company, Royal Philips Electronics of the Netherlands, is one of the world's biggest electronics companies and Europe's largest, with sales of $28.8 billion (EUR 32.3 billion) in 2001. It is a global leader in color television sets, lighting, electric shavers, medical diagnostic imaging and patient monitoring, and one-chip TV products. It's 186,000 employees in more than 60 countries are active in the areas of lighting, consumer electronics, domestic appliances, components, semiconductors, and medical systems. Philips is quoted on the NYSE (symbol: PHG), London, Frankfurt, Amsterdam and other stock exchanges. News from Philips is located at www.news.philips.com
June 18--Here is major shaver industry news: The European Union's highest court has ruled against Philips in its trademark battle against Remington over the basic three-head rotary shaver design which the court ruled is not protected by European trademark law. You can read more at http://news.bbc.co.uk/hi/english/business/newsid_2051000/2051572.stm
June 16--I have a new sponsor to report, TheBuyersClub.com, an on-line mail order shop based in Montreal, Quebec, Canada. They helped me in getting their banner to create a pop-up window with their web site, but I haven't yet figured out how to keep from sponsors' link frame intact after clicking on the new banner. Oh, well, there's always the back arrow you can click on with the mouse in the meantime...
June 2--The June Survey Page questions are now up and running. I have a date for shaver enthusiasts in mid-Michigan to put on the calendar. I will be a guest lecturer on Tuesday, June 25 at the Clio Historical Society meeting at the Clio Historical Museum which is located in the former Clio train depot in Clio, Michigan which is north of Flint. Want to know more about Clio? The URL is http://www.cliomi.org/ and the name is pronounced kleye-o, NOT klee-o.
May 31--The Survey Page questions for June will be about giving electric shavers as Father's Day or graduation gifts. Because June 1 falls on a weekend, I may take longer than usual to update the Survey Page questions for June. The May Survey Page response was much better than the April response. Thank you.
May 1--I was disappointed I got only three responses to the April Survey Page questions about women's shavers and epilators. So I guess that it's mainly men who follow these web pages. For the May Survey Page, I'm repeating a set of questions I have not asked in over two years and I hope to get a lot better response this month.
April 23--Here is more electric shaver industry news, pasted from a Gillette news release about their Braun subsidiary:
-- Braun sales of $187 million for the quarter were two percent higher than a year earlier despite the negative impact of currency that reduced sales by four percent. Profit of $3 million was well below that of a year ago due to unfavorable sales mix, significantly higher marketing investment in the dry shaving category and exchange. The unfavorable sales mix was caused by strong sales of lower-margin household products, following the financial difficulties of a major competitor. Increased marketing, particularly in advertising, supported several new products, including the Flex XP men's washable shaver, the Eversoft women's electric hair epilator and several mid-priced electric shavers. Profit was further dampened by unfavorable currency movement in the large Japanese shaver market.
April 21--After the tragic "friendly fire" incident which claimed the lives of four Canadian soldiers in Afghanistan, I felt that I needed new clip art which I found and I replaced the "United we stand" clip art with the "We're with you" clip art, which shows both the Canadian and American flags, on the top of the sponsors' link frame.
April 18--A Tell Mr. Steel Beard tip, an E-mail tip and my own discovery led me to add the following links in the 'other' section: Consumer Search which has readers who give preferences for products--including electric shavers--and whose webmasters like the Electric Shaver Page the best for electric shaver info; and the home page of the Philips Domestic Appliances & Personal Care factory in Drachten, The Netherlands which makes Philishave and Norelco shavers. I've also added the updated note for what is now Savers UK Ltd. which is a British shaver shop in Kingston-upon-Thames in the list of shaver shops on line as well as added a link for http://www.smallappliance.com which sells small appliances and parts for them.
April 10--Here is more electric shaver industry news:
Philips celebrates four hundred millionth Philishave
Amsterdam, The Netherlands, 10 April, 2002: Royal Philips Electronics today announced it has manufactured its 400 millionth Philishave dry razor. Philips has sold an average of 700 Philishaves an hour everyday, since its introduction in 1939, which makes Philishave the number one in electric razor shaving over its 63 years of history.
Ad Veenhof, President and CEO of Domestic Appliances and Personal Care (DAP), commented on today's milestone, "We are proud on this 400 millionth shaver to come off the production line. The pioneering spirit and zest with which Philishave became a success throughout the world serves as a great inspiration now and in the future. To commemorate reaching this milestone, Philips is releasing this month a limited edition of the Cool Skin shaver, combining cutting-edge shaving technology with state-of-the-art graphic finishings; 50,000 of the limited edition shavers will be released worldwide".
Philishave was developed by Professor Alexandre Horowitz (1904 - 1982) and the first product was manufactured on March 9,1939. Only five days later, the first six products in the Philishave family were presented to the general public at a trade fair in Utrecht, the Netherlands. By 1940, 12,000 shavers had been manufactured. The production of the 100 millionth Philishave was celebrated in 1970 while 1984 saw the manufacture of the 200 millionth shaver. Only eleven years later the 300 millionth Philishave was presented to Mr. Frits Philips, former president of Philips (1961 - 1971).
For further information:
Philips Corporate Communications, Andre Manning, tel: +31 20 5977199 or firstname.lastname@example.org
(end of pasted news release)
Congratulations, Philips! Imagine making 400 million shavers since 1939!
April 9--Here is electric shaver industry news:
Philips sells payer shavers to Hui Holdings
Amsterdam, April 9, 2002 - Royal Philips Electronics (NYSE:PHG, AEX:PHI) today announced that it has reached an agreement to sell Payer Elektroprodukte to Hui Holding Sdn. Bhd. of Malaysia. The transaction is expected to close by end of June 2002 and is subject to customary closing conditions. Financial details were not disclosed.
Payer Elektroprodukte is an Austrian based leading original equipment manufacturer (OEM) of electric foil shavers and is currently part of the Philips' Domestic Appliance and Personal Care (DAP) Division. The business has approximately 600 employees with production facilities in Austria and Hungary.
Mr. Erik Bouts, CEO of Shaving and Grooming of Philips DAP, commented: "For Payer Elektroprodukte this is a great opportunity to grow and focus on the OEM electric foil shaver market, while allowing Philips DAP to concentrate on its leadership in rotary shaving. With the new owner the company has better opportunities for long term future growth."
Philips is the global leader in electric shaving. Its focus is on rotary shaving via its Philishave and Norelco product lines. Foil shaving is a non-core activity within Philips, and the decision to divest the business is the best way to secure its future.
Hui Holding Sdn. Bhd. is a privately held company based in Malaysia. Its principal interest is investment holdings in manufacturing operations throughout the world. The company intends to maintain the current business model of Payer Elektroprodukte and continue to supply world's leading brands with foil shavers and other products.
For media inquiries, please contact:
Jeremy Cohen, Philips Corporate Communications, tel: +31 20 59 77 213
KM Chung, Hui Holdings, tel.: +60 4 399 3188
About Hui Holdings
Hui Holdings is a Malaysia based, global financial investment company. Its main investments are in high-precision plastics and metal manufacturing and development and making of toolings with subsidiaries on all continents. Furthermore, it holds investments in the Asian Pacific region, in a high technology equipment distributor for selected products and services in the electronics, biomedical, production, semiconductor and photo industries.
About Royal Philips Electronics
Royal Philips Electronics of the Netherlands is one of the world's biggest electronics companies and Europe's largest, with sales of EUR 32.3 billion in 2001. It is a global leader in color television sets, lighting, electric shavers, medical diagnostic imaging and patient monitoring, and one-chip TV products. Its 189,000 employees in more than 60 countries are active in the areas of lighting, consumer electronics, domestic appliances, components, semiconductors, and medical systems. Philips is quoted on the NYSE (symbol: PHG), London, Frankfurt, Amsterdam and other stock exchanges. News from Philips is located at www.news.philips.com
(end of pasted news release)
Until this news release was issued, I didn't know that Philips owned Payer. You learn something new every day.
April 1--For the April Survey Page questions, I'm repeating the May 2000 questions about women who use electric shavers and/or epilators. An E-mail tip inspired me to update the listing for Brevete's wind-up shaver made in Monaco in the Shaver Brands From The Past page.
March 21--Giantsavings.com is no more. Their URL has been taken over by Kitchen Home Gadgets and they agreed to replace Giantsavings.com as a sponsored link.
March 20--Here is electric shaver industry news: Patrick Dinley, the president and chief executive officer of the Philips DAP unit in the USA, Norelco Consumer Products Company, will retire effective April 1 after more than 20 years at Norelco. Enjoy your retirement, Pat! A successor has not yet been named.
March 10--After being off line for several days, the Bravenet web hosting service is now back up. Unfortunately for the March Survey Page questions, they were lost but there were only 2 replies at the time Bravenet went off line. So I restored the March Survey Page questions and I encourage everyone, even the two who did respond before Bravenet went down, to take part in this survey.
February 28--On the final day that Excite @Home will be in operation, I've got all the web pages transferred to Comcast's 'My Web Pages' web hosting feature. If you have any trouble accessing web pages which Comcast hosts, please let me know and I'll fix it ASAP. I've decided for March to repeat the questions I originally posted on July 2000 about shaver preferences based upon the type of whiskers you have. Again, I will be spending less time on this web site as I concentrate on other things which will result in something big I will talk about this Spring. So again, please bear with me if I'm slow in answering E-mail or updating Tell Mr. Steel Beard and other portions of the Electric Shaver Page.
February 20--For the next month, I will be spending less time on this web site as I will be tied up with other projects. I have a backlog of Ads Of The Weeks so I will continue to post a new one each weekend. I will also be slow in answering my E-mail and posting new Tell Mr. Steel Beard submissions. So please bear with me during the month-long period and I will post big news about myself next month.
February 12--I've got very good news from Comcast! First, my new E-mail address of email@example.com is now operational so that is my new default E-mail address effective immediately. Second, I've figured out how to upload my web pages to Comcast's network so I've begun the process of uploading the web pages @Home has been hosting to Comcast. When I complete that, I'll begin the gradual process of changing the links so that they will go to Comcast instead of @Home. I should be completed before Excite @Home dies at the end of the month.
February 4--I've added St. Louis Shaver & Appliance in St. Louis, Missouri, USA to the list of shaver shops on line. They are at http://www.mrshaver.com
February 1--For the February Survey Page questions, I decided to return to asking questions about the major shaver companies' customer service. I will also ask a new question about the major shaver company web sites. Even though I usually group Philishave and Norelco shavers together as both are the same shavers made by Philips using different names, I decided on the web site question to list them separately as the Philishave and Norelco web sites have major differences.
January 27--Because of lack of interest, I've converted the "In Search Of..." message board into a general interest message board devoted to electric shavers and I encourage anyone with a question or statement regarding shavers to post it to this forum. We may be losing a sponsored link as the Giantsavings.com URL now gives a simple message saying they are not taking orders at this time and that inquires be directed to firstname.lastname@example.org. I hope they will come back as they owe me commission money. As for the February Survey Page questions, I'll look at previous questions to see which ones I'll use again. If anyone has any ideas for future Survey Page questions, please let me know. The transition from Excite @Home to Comcast's own fast Internet network was successful, but is not yet completed. Whilst I am now using Comcast's own network to surf the 'Net, my E-mail address is still with Excite @Home was well as web hosting. I've already inquired with Comcast as to when I will get a new E-mail address and they said they will notify me when I can begin to upload my web pages to the Comcast network.
January 22--Comcast is scheduled to make the transition in my area from the @Home network to Comcast's own network on Saturday, January 26. So if I'm online after that day, I will have a new E-mail address (such as email@example.com to replace firstname.lastname@example.org) to go alongside my email@example.com which will not change. I will also be able to begin transferring the web pages which Excite @Home hosts to the Comcast network. I will continue to receive E-mail at the firstname.lastname@example.org E-mail address until February 28.
January 1, 2002--First I wish everyone a Happy New Year. The new year should be a much better year than the last one which ended. It will definitely be a better year for me, but I'm not at liberty to tell the world about it yet. I'm extremely pleased with the December Survey Page results so I've decided to repeat the Survey Page questions from last January in hopes of getting a bigger response and I added questions I didn't think of last year related to the electric shaver you may have received as a gift last month. I've decided for legal reasons to remove the photo of fire fighters raising the American flag on September 11 at the ruins of the World Trade Center for legal reasons as that photo is copyrighted and, even though the Electric Shaver Page is a hobby web site with sponsored links, the newspaper which owns the copyright for the photo does not allow the photo to be used for commercial purposes which I may be doing indirectly because of the sponsored links. I found out that Philips DAP has a German language web site which lists Philishave models available in Germany so I've updated the Philips DAP shaver availability page, but the German listing was only for men's shavers. To be consistent, I've unfortunately had to delete the women's shavers and epilators listings so I'm concentrating on Philishave/Norelco shaver availability for Canada, Germany, Japan and the USA. This web site is still under construction at http://iavbbs.com/gflinn/phshavrs.htm BTW, in case you are wondering about myself, you can E-mail me. I'll tell the world about it in due time.