In 1992, two successful CEOs found themselves in a dispute over the use of a slogan that they both thought of, so instead of taking their case to court, they decided to end their dispute by putting on one of the most epic arm wrestling competitions in history.
Southwest Airlines was known for thinking outside of the box and using unique marketing strategies to attract customers. Through the 70s and 80s, Southwest became one of the top airlines in the country, offering lower fares and flights between specific locations. The company changed their catchphrase multiple times over the years, and in 1990, when they decided to go with the “Just Plane Smart,” they weren’t aware that an aviation company out of Greenville, South Carolina had already been using a similar slogan.
15 months into using their new slogan, Southwest Airlines CEO Herb Kelleher got a call from Kurt Herwald, CEO of South Carolina’s Stevens Aviation. Herwald informed the massive airline that they had been using the slogan “Plane Smart” before Southwest thought it up. Herwald wanted to avoid a long, drawn-out legal battle over the rights to use the slogan, so he proposed that the two CEOs meet for a widely publicized arm wrestling competition, and whoever won would get to use the slogan. In addition, the loser of each of the three rounds would have to donate $5,000 to the Muscular Dystrophy Association and the Ronald McDonald House.
So, on March 20, 1992, Kelleher and Herwald went head to head in the “Malice in Dallas” competition. The two CEOs publicized the event and a big crowd turned out to watch the showdown in person. The entire event was theatrical and over the top, and after three rounds, Southwest’s Kelleher wound up losing to Stevens’ Herwald. In the end, however, Herwald decided to let Kelleher still use the slogan in a sign of good faith, and what started out as a way to dispute the use of a slogan turned into one of the greatest publicity stunts in history.
“There's too much litigation in business today and not enough leadership,” said Herwald at the time. “We need more guys like Herb Kelleher who are willing to say we don't need to go to court all the time.”
Both companies benefitted greatly from the arm wrestling competition, with Southwest Airlines saying that it generated around $6 million in publicity.
A small camera-equipped drone crashed onto a Manhattan sidewalk Monday evening, narrowly missing a financial analyst who gutted the drone and submitted the footage to the local news.
The unmanned aircraft was identified as a Phantom Quadcopter, which should not have been flying through congested pedestrian areas, according to Federal Aviation Administration spokesperson Laura Brown.
The video shows the drone taking off from a high rise in Midtown Manhattan, and focuses momentarily on the operator. Then, the drone moves over the city during rush hour, flying 20 to 30 stories above ground.
The drone recorded some of the city’s most iconic buildings, including the Chrysler, MetLife and Grand Central.
The driver, who is clearly inexperienced, slams the drone into several buildings until it finally falls to the ground only feet away from the businessman.
“Someone’s done something very reckless,” the anonymous financial analyst said, “choosing something for their personal enjoyment over any of the consequences.”
When the businessman reported the drone to police, they did nothing.
“I got the sense that they knew that it was something out of the ordinary,” he said, “but didn’t know how to handle it.”
The NYPD is now investigating the incident to see whether reckless endangerment was involved.
California aviation firm, Aeros, has been working for years on breakthrough technology for a new airship. Now the revolutionary prototype -- which looks like a giant blimp -- is ready for its first test flight.
It may look like something out of a SciFi movie but the 250 foot prototype is only half the size of the final craft. According to the Daily Mail, the finished version is expected to carry 66 tons of cargo, three times as much as any military cargo plane, and use only 1/3 of the fuel.
Previously, airships have been limited because of the difficulty managing ballast while they were unloaded. The Aeroscraft ship is able to control the buoyancy in their new craft by compressing helium, making the craft heavier for unloading and lighter for flight. The ships vertical takeoff means it doesn't even require a runway or landing strip.
'The advantage is you don’t need ground infrastructure. You can fly anywhere, you can land anywhere, you don’t need any ballast, you don’t need any ground crew.' Explained Igor Pasternak, Aeros's founder and CEO.
This ability means the craft is ideal for delivering supplies to areas not equipped with standard landing facilities. It could be a much needed tool for battlefields and disaster relief efforts. The breakthrough research was made possible with funding by the Pentagon and NASA, who contributed a sum of $36 million to the project.
Dubbed the 'Dream Machine' the finished Aeroscraft is expected to be completed in three years. It will reach a speed of 120 knots and cover over 3000 nautical miles.