Monday, Jan. 21, 1935
I.B.C. Since the able mossbacks of His Majesty's Government do not choose to allow advertising to be broadcast from any station in Great Britain, their firm stand creates a facile opportunity. Some smart pioneer could sign up a string of small Spanish, French and other European stations, put on attractive programs in English, bombard the Islands with advertisements.
Exactly that has now been done by one Captain Leonard F. Plugge who calls his lively chain International Broadcasting Co., in limpet-like approximation to the name of His Majesty's Government's stuffy British Broadcasting Co.* Fortnight ago President Plugge sent Vice President Frank Lamping to storm Manhattan, and U.S. exporters to Great Britain found themselves signing on dotted lines, fascinated by the prospect of having their U. S. products hawked in England by voices from Paris, Madrid and even Luxembourg.
I.B.C. also spouts advertising in Continental tongues. Now that the French Government has banned all blurbs from its state stations (TIME, Jan. 7), private French stations like Poste Parisien on the I.B.C. chain are cleaning up with such appeals to patriotic Frenchmen as "Hear the temple bells of Saigon, French Indo-China, in your own home with a Philco."
President Plugge's latest addition to I.B.C. is the Yankee Network. Boston station WNAC and Providence station WEAN now bombard the British Isles with short wave advertisements, try to wean His Majesty's subjects from their favorite liver pills to others. The pill now chiefly plugged by President Plugge was announced before the holidays cheerily thus : "You must be ready for Christmas! Begin taking Bile Beans right away."
S.S. Since English Rolls Royce Ltd. became so vexed last year with the Rolls Royce Co. of America that the latter is now Springfield Manufacturing Co., another pioneer opportunity is obvious. But are U.S. citizens ready to pay some $18,000 today for a brand new English Rolls?
Figuring that they are not, Pioneer Richard Taylor, famed English racing driver, has made eight flying trips to the U.S. in the past two years selling the S.S. with phenomenal success in California and Florida. As every swank Briton knows, there are few cars on His Majesty's roads swanker than an S.S. Not to know what these initials mean is as odd in Mayfair as to appear puzzled when someone mentions the P.M. (Prime Minister). S.S. once stood for Standard Swallow, now stands simply for S.S. Ltd. Last week Pioneer Taylor chalked up an amazing record at the close of Manhattan's Motor Show. From an obscure stand on the top floor among the accessories he had sold five S.S. cars per day retail for some $2,400 each, plus several times that number wholesale to eager new U.S. dealers. Before the Show opened there were five S.S. service stations in Florida, one in California. When it closed stations in Manhattan and Chicago had been added and in the U.S. were $50,000 worth of S.S. spare parts and 130 S.S. cars.
of this pioneering boomlet : Every S.S. is guaranteed to do between 85 and
a weak man," says Pioneer Taylor. "I was so shot to pieces
during the War that I really
have no strength at all. Would you believe
that I was able to drive an
S.S. from here to Palm Beach in one full day —
W. S. No pioneer is 75-year-old Baron Dickinson, unless one takes seriously his description of himself as "one of the Originators of the League of Nations.''* A raring pusher into pastures new, however, is his spinster sister, 70-year-old Annie J. Dickinson. Last week she again was on the rampage, this time to supply Yugoslavia with many a W. S. (Wanderer's Shelter), each boasting a w. c.
Spinster Dickinson War-nursed all over what is now Yugoslavia. She shares the enthusiasm of hundreds of Britons, Germans and Americans who have discovered that rustic Yugoslavia, cheap, romantic and wildly beautiful, would be a vacation Eden, if only the food were not so coarse, the sheets so grey, the inside plumbing so rare. Last week indomitable Miss Dickinson had undertaken the flotation of The Wanderer's Shelters Ltd. and was busy designing and ordering hostels and furniture. Said Pioneer Dickinson: "Our small hotels and guest houses will be dotted over the lesser known, completely unspoiled rural districts of Yugoslavia. Of course our buildings and furniture will follow Yugoslav tradition, but they will be modern and kept spotless."
*"If I may say so," observed lean, natty B.B.C. Orchestra Conductor Dr. Adrian Boult in Boston last week, ''the 30 or more directors of the various departments of B. B. C. are quite intelligent people. They have quite splendid university degrees, some of them, and they get around a lot. So we really get most of our ideas from each other. We meet, the 30 of us, every day at tea time.
"The idea that the Government supports us is a most common error, even among Englishmen." continued Dr. Boult, though he carefully did not deny that the Government controls B.B.C. "If anything, we help to subsidize the Government. Our funds are derived from taxes on radio receivers and from subscriptions to our publications. The B.B.C. Radio Times for example has a circulation of 2,000,000. The Post Office Department sells radio licenses for $2.50 a year and the Government takes half. We are providing the Government, in fact, with about $7,500,000 a year."
*An eminent attorney, Lord Dickinson has been President of the International Union of League of Nations Societies (1925), once appeared at Geneva as a substitute British delegate to the League.
From « Time Magazine »