Nestle’s Trust, Innovation at the Edges, and Millennials Dis Capitalism


Nestle’s brand in India goes up in smoke. Photo: Getty Images

Nestle Was a Trusted Brand in India. Then It Wasn’t
 Fortune’s Erika Fry goes deep on a noodle debacle in India that cost Nestle half a billion dollars. After the company’s vastly popular Maggi noodles — one of India’s top brands — were found by state laboratories to include both MSG and lead, Nestle took the product off the market (a step ahead of regulators). But Nestle insisted the product was safe despite government results — and failed to engage with the government in a productive way. Maggi is now back on the market, but the brand is tainted. This is a vivid example of how companies should respect outside concerns even if they think they’ve done nothing wrong — and the tremendous costs when they misstep.

The Innovations at the Edge of NewCoBoston
 NewCo Boston yesterday was outstanding — yet we wrote about innovation along its edges that took place far outside of Boston. Let us introduce you to Design That Matters and MathWorks.

You Won’t Believe What Millennials Say About Capitalism
 They reject it (Washington Post), according to a Harvard study. They don’t seem to like socialism much, either. How to read these results? John Della Volpe, who ran the poll, says “They’re not rejecting the concept. The way in which capitalism is practiced today, in the minds of young people — that’s what they’re rejecting.” More evidence of change coming?

Forget Dan Lyons. This Is What It’s Really Like
 Those wondering what startup life can be like for one young woman are directed to Anna Wiener’s “Uncanny Valley” (n+1), which chronicles a year in the life of someone trying to make it work. Aside from one glaring error (these people have weekends off?), this feels infinitely more real than some other ballyhooed startup exposes published recently. And it’s filled with nod-your-head zingers like “The internet is choked with blindly ambitious and professionally inexperienced men giving each other anecdote-based instruction and bullet-point advice.”

FBI Doesn’t Need Oversight, Says FBI
 The FBI said yesterday that it will not share with Apple the methods it used to open the Sen Bernadino shooter’s iPhone (NYT), nor will it “send the issue to a special White House committee that reviews questions of whether American intelligence agencies have discovered software ‘vulnerabilities’ that should be shared with the software maker.” Various security experts, among them Edward Snowden, are predicting that this refusal will lead to more hacks and soon. It’s yet another example of how lack of transparency is bound to cause trouble.

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