Why Microsoft is bullish on Australia's clamp down on media

Hello and welcome to Insider Advertising for February 23. I’m senior advertising reporter Lauren Johnson, and here’s what’s going on:

  • Microsoft sides with publishers
  • How Mattel revamped Barbie.
  • Roark Capital’s bet on nostalgia.

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Tips, comments, suggestions? Drop me a line at [email protected] or on Twitter at @LaurenJohnson.

Pedro Fiúza/NurPhoto via Getty Images

Microsoft’s Brad Smith lays out why the company is taking news publishers’ side in the fight with big tech

  • An Australia law requiring tech companies to pay publishers led Facebook to ban news on the platform.
  • Microsoft’s president Brad Smith said he hoped other countries adopt similar measures.
  • Microsoft is also working with European publishers on an “Australian-style arbitration mechanism.”

Read the story.


Inside Barbie’s comeback: How Mattel repositioned the 60-year-old doll as a woke role model and reversed its sales slump

  • Tanya Dua reports that Barbie sales have soared in the pandemic, its worldwide gross billings up 19% in the fourth quarter.
  • The results reversed a years-long slump in sales.
  • They also followed the brand’s efforts to diversify its product and marketing.

Read the story.

Facebook/Jamba Juice

How Neal Aronson built Roark Capital into a booming business by buying up dying nostalgia brands like Jamba Juice and Arby’s

  • Neal Aronson founded Roark Capital in 2001 after working in the hotel business.
  • Roark has acquired 90 brands that have 63,000 locations and account for $54 billion in system revenues.
  • Roark is best known for its fast-food empire and brands such as Jamba, Arby’s, and Dunkin’.

Read the story.

More stories we’re reading:

  • Clubhouse users should assume they’re being recorded, a data-privacy expert said, following a breach that sent conversations to another website (Business Insider)
  • New data suggests ‘The Office’ gave a boost to NBCUniversal’s Peacock, but losing the show didn’t hurt Netflix (Business Insider)
  • How American Eagle Outfitters outperformed its peers during the pandemic thanks to ‘distribution nodes,’ body positivity, and TikTok (Business Insider)
  • Democrats ask cable and streaming providers about their role in spreading misinformation ahead of Capitol riot (CNBC)
  • Google to lift political ad ban put in place following Capitol siege (Axios)

Thanks for reading and see you tomorrow! You can reach me in the meantime at [email protected] and subscribe to this daily email here.

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