Tag Archives: CBS

Saab History Interviews Joel Manby About Undercover Boss

Posted on 24. Mar, 2010 by .


Saab History has had the great chance once again to interview Joel Manby, Saab Cars USA’s former President (1996-2000). This interview is about about his recently mentioned experience on the CBS television series “Undercover Boss”.

A sincere thank you to Joel for his input about this series prior to the air date this Sunday night, March 28th at 9pm EST. I particularly like his last response pertaining to Saab Automobile.

Enjoy the interview below:

1) How did you initially get involved in CBS “Undercover Boss”?

The producers contacted us. They were looking for an entertainment company and theme parks provide a good visual background. Because we are independently owned, not associated with a media conglomerate, and have a variety of properties—-theme parks, aquariums, sightseeing operations— we were a good option for them.

2) What were some of the areas of the program that interested you most?

At first we were very skeptical. Anytime someone proactively approaches us and wants to produce a television show on our property, then healthy skepticism follows. But as we engaged in serious dialogue with them, we realized that they were really searching for companies who would embrace the concept and be willing to hold the mirror up to see what we could learn about ourselves. This wasn’t a scripted television program but rather an honest look at our employees and their roles within our organization. I know that when I visit our properties that I get special treatment, even though I don’t want it or ask for it. This was a unique opportunity to work the front lines in a way that I would never be able
to do currently. I know we have terrific employees—and I wanted to witness first-hand how dedicated and passionate our employees are as they interact with our guests to ‘create memories worth repeating’. I didn’t just want to observe, I wanted to participate and feel their passion. So, highlighting the good people of Herschend Family Entertainment was important to me.

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Joel Manby, Fmr Saab USA CEO On CBS "Undercover Boss"

Posted on 15. Mar, 2010 by .


Saab History has learned that Joel Manby, Saab Cars USA, Inc’s former President & CEO (1996-2000) that I interviewed back in December of 2008, will be on an episode of the new CBS series “Undercover Boss” here in the United States on Sunday, March 28th.

The program should be available online at CBS and perhaps other sites as well for those unable to watch the program in the United States.

Here is the press release below:

Hi friends and family,

Some of you know this, and some of you don’t know, until now…

Joel, as CEO of Herschend Family Entertainment, is a “boss” who goes undercover on an episode of Undercover Boss.  His episode will air Sunday, March 28th at 9pm.  CBS filmed Joel last October and we’ve been waiting for his episode to air.  We haven’t seen it and won’t until it airs.  🙂


Press Release:


CBS announced today the four remaining companies who are participating in the first season of UNDERCOVER BOSS. The series airs Sundays (9:00-10:00 PM, ET/PT) on the CBS Television Network.

The remaining Season One companies are:

* Roto-Rooter (Rick L. Arquilla, President and COO): The largest plumbing provider in North America

* 1-800-Flowers (Chris McCann, President): One of the world’s largest florists

* GSI Commerce (Michael G. Rubin, Chairman, President and CEO): The e-commerce giant behind numerous top U.S. retailers

* Herschend Family Entertainment (Joel Manby, President and CEO): A leader in the world of family theme parks and attractions

The air schedule for upcoming episodes of UNDERCOVER BOSS follows:

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The Saab 9-4x BioPower Concept World Premiere

Posted on 14. Jan, 2008 by .


Film Credit: Saab History

Today, I finally got the chance to film and see for my own eyes, the much anticipated 2008 Saab 9-4x BioPower Concept. This vehicle was introduced by Saab Automobile’s premiered at the GM Press Conference today at 11:20am, January 13th, 2008.

This milestone for the Saab Automobile brand signifies two significant systems that will be deployed in this new “crossover” segment. These systems include the recently premiered Swedish designed and engineered XWD Cross-Wheel Drive system, recently premiered in the 2008 Saab 9-3 Turbo-X. Secondly, the BioPower system, also Swedish designed and engineered which takes into consideration the use of enthanol (E-85).

The Saab 9-4x BioPower once in production form, will be the halo car for E-85 for the Saab Automobile brand in North America and will be available in 1 years time in about 85-90% of the execution we see in the concept car.

This segment in the crossover also signifies the direct application to specific Saab signature design cues inspired by the Aero-X Concept car.

A thank you of course goes to Saab Automobile & General Motors, CBS News for allowing me to hook my 1/8″ mini-pin connector (need to get an 1/8″ mini pin to PRO XLR adapter) to hook into audio line, BBC news for giving me prime real-estate on the press stage, and Saab Colorado, Inc. for covering the cost of renting the professional camcorder equipment.

This was truly an important historical landmark for the Saab Automobile brand today and all of the journalists, writers and bloggers that I have spoken to have nothing but praise for this new product launch.

A great day, especially for the future of Saab.

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Saab Embraces Aircraft Heritage in new “Born From Jets” Ad Campaign

Posted on 21. Oct, 2005 by .



Saab Embraces Aircraft Heritage in new “Born From Jets” Ad Campaign

Detroit — Saab Cars USA reaches back to its unique aircraft roots as the foundation for a new advertising campaign created with Lowe New York. The all-new “Born From Jets” campaign launches this month and supports the most aggressive product portfolio expansion in Saab’s 58-year history as an automaker.

The fully integrated campaign comprises national broadcast and cable, national and regional print ads, regional radio, outdoor boards, point of sale, interactive, direct mail and nationwide promotional activities.

The objective of the “Born From Jets” campaign is to raise awareness of the storied Swedish carmaker as a premium brand that offers aircraft-inspired design and performance. To that end, it will launch with a 30-hour “burst” of media activity beginning on Oct. 23, 2005 that promises to deliver 75 million impressions in the all-important 25-54 age group.

Saab Cars USA general manager Jay Spenchian says Saab has genuine performance credentials, but that too few people are aware of this premium European brand. On top of that, Saab must set itself apart from other car makers that claim “performance” as their brand promise. Spenchian says by reaching into Saab’s history, his team arrived at a solution that addresses both issues.

“Saab is an acronym for ‘Svenska Aeroplan Aktiebolaget,’ or Swedish Aircraft Company,” he said. “The company began to build airplanes in 1937, and when it turned to cars ten years later, the spirit of the jets that Saab built at the time carried over in the vehicles’ design, performance, safety features and ergonomics.

“Jets are inherently cool — they represent speed, control, safety, quality and reliability. Saab is the only car company that can claim such a heritage. Nobody else can say ‘what our founding engineers knew about thrust and power inspired us to build a more exciting vehicle’ or ‘what they knew about keeping pilots alive inspired us to build a safer vehicle.’ This is unique to Saab and it really resonates with potential customers.”

All versions of the “Born From Jets” campaign will contain two lines of copy that recall the aircraft link: “Saab was founded by 16 aircraft engineers, and their spirit lives on” and “When you used to build jets, you don’t just build another vehicle.” The copy also contains proof points — for example, the fuel-efficient 250-hp V6 turbo in 9-3 Aero models or Displacement on Demand which increases the fuel efficiency of the V8-powered 9-7X SUV.

The TV spots are a high-energy combination of actual photography and the latest technology computer-generated imagery.

The first spot to air, “Delta Formation,” shows a fleet of Saab Gripen jet fighters performing aerobatic maneuvers over a desert. As the shot cuts to the ground, we see a speeding Saab 9-3, while back in the sky the jets make a delta formation. With highly orchestrated precision they fly over the Saab until, seen from high above, the 9-3 leads the tip of the formation.

The voiceover says, “Saab was founded by 16 aircraft engineers. Their spirit lives on.” As the 9-3 storms through a cloud of dust, two attendants flag it in with air crew paddles and the car pulls into a driveway. The voiceover continues, “When you used to build jets, you don’t build just another car.”

The tagline reads, “Saab. Born From Jets.” Different versions of this spot will feature each car in the 9-3 range — Convertible, Sport Sedan and SportCombi, an all-new 5-door version arriving in November 2005.

The second TV spot, titled “Transformer,” features the new 9-7X, Saab’s first SUV. Additional spots are planned for early 2006 to launch new versions of Saab’s flagship vehicles, the 9-5 Sedan and SportCombi.

“We are all proud of the ‘Born From Jets’ campaign,” said Mark Wnek, chairman and chief creative officer of Lowe New York. “It draws on a unique aspect of Saab’s heritage to tell a compelling story and to increase people’s awareness of this exciting premium brand.”

* * * * * * * * * * *

Born from Jets Media Plan (30-hour “burst”)

Sunday, Oct. 23

* 7:00 p.m. NBC Dateline
* 8:00 p.m. ABC Extreme Home Makeover
* 9:00 p.m. CBS Sunday Night Movie
* 10:00 p.m. NBC Crossing Jordan

Monday, Oct. 24

* 8:00 p.m. NBC Surface
* 9:00 p.m. ABC Monday Night Football
* NBC Las Vegas
* FOX Prison Break
* 10:00 p.m. NBC Medium
* Late CBS David Letterman
* NBC Tonight Show with Jay Leno
* ABC Jimmy Kimmel
* NBC Conan O’Brien

Cable Networks
A&E, BBC, Biography, Bravo, Comedy Central, E!, Fine Living, Food Network, Fox News, MSNBC, National Geographic, TLC, Travel Channel

Conde Nast Traveler, Automobile, Autoweek, Car and Driver, Bon Appetit, Food and Wine, The New Yorker, Coastal Living, Elle Décor, Golf Digest, Golf for Women, National Geographic Adventure, Runner’s World, Ski

National Newspapers
New York Times , USA Today, Wall Street Journal

Lowe Worldwide was founded in London in 1981, with a handful of people and the ambition to build a top global agency through producing effective, high quality creative advertising. Today, the group has earned an enviable reputation for building powerful brands for an outstanding roster of global clients which includes Unilever, Electrolux, Johnson & Johnson and Nestle. The agency has positioned itself as the “next generation growth network” and capitalizes on the strength of individual “lighthouses,” empowering them to be the expert or leader in their market. www.loweworldwide.com

Saab is a division of General Motors Corp. Saab Cars USA is the importer and/or distributor of Saab 9-2X, 9-3, 9-5 and 9-7X automobiles for Saab Automobile AB, Sweden. For more information, please visit www.saabusa.com

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Production Concept