As summer comes to a close and Blue Bell brings its products to store shelves, some consumers are lining up for their long-awaited gallon of Homemade Vanilla while others are still standing in the freezer section evaluating other options. Blue Bell is facing what could be the company’s largest hurdle yet – regaining trust and proving to everyone that product safety is now exceeding standards. In a recent feature by the Austin American-Statesman, Pierpont’s crisis expert Terry Hemeyer commented on the ice cream legend’s return.
Snapshots from the article: Terry Hemeyer, who teaches crisis management at Rice University and the University of Texas, said Blue Bell also got some crucial help when Fort Worth billionaire businessman Sid Bass agreed to invest in the company. The company hasn’t said how much Bass invested, but The Wall Street Journal reported Bass loaned Blue Bell as much as $125 million for up to a one-third stake in the company. That gave the company a badly needed lifeline, experts say.
Hemeyer – who said Blue Bell should “go very careful, be very diligent” with its relaunch – said that “if they didn’t have Mr. Bass, they would have had a bigger problem and not be able to go forward. He solved their uncertainty. And it took the threat of a takeover away.”