Thursday, 12 March 2009

JC Decaux and media-rich pissoirs

One of the guilty pleasures I don't often own up to is buying the FT as a treat when I'm travelling. Today as well as reading their "future of capitalism" essay (they think capitalism has a future?) and news about the devaluation of the Swiss Franc, I was particularly intrigued to find a fun article about JC Decaux a name you see on almost every street corner in France - and also in Brazil and Berlin and many other places. It's a company that makes and maintains bus stops, public toilets, metro entrances and other street furniture.
Until we moved to France I'd never really known of this company, but we began to wonder who this person was who signed all of the bus stops. Finding work in Poland or Lebannon signed by the same person made me feel quite at home. I suppose I should have realised that it was one of the world leaders in the field of street furniture - but street furniture had never really been much my thing - though I love the German Litfaßsäulen.
Anyway as I read about JC Decaux's falling advertising revenue I took pleasure in this splendid sentence:
"But it is expensive to kit out cities with media-rich pissoirs and graffiti-resistant benches."
I'm sure that's true. You can read more here.