Swedish H&M Apologizes for Being Fricking Clueless!!
Hennes & Mauritz AB has started 2018 at the center of an embarrassing controversy after the Swedish clothes retailer published an ad showing a black child modeling a hoodie with the text “coolest monkey in the jungle.”
The company has pulled the garment in question from its stores and apologized. H&M also said it agreed with those who were upset by the image, which appeared in its online store. The image caused a social-media storm and prompted the Canadian artist, The Weeknd, to end his collaboration with the Stockholm-based company.
The Weeknd Tweeted:
woke up this morning shocked and embarrassed by this photo. i’m deeply offended and will not be working with @hm anymore…
“We are deeply sorry that the picture was taken and we also regret the actual print,” H&M said. “Therefore, we have not only removed the image from our channels, but also the garment from our product offering globally.”
The controversy comes at a sensitive time for H&M. Its shares slumped more than 30 percent last year amid a disappointing sales development in its physical stores, and analysts slashed their ratings in response. Some 51 percent of analysts now advise clients to sell the shares, the biggest proportion of negative ratings since at least early 2003, according to Bloomberg data.
In a note on Tuesday, Danske Bank cut its price target on H&M, citing pressure on sales. Danske sees H&M shares trading at 152 kronor 12 months from now, compared with its previous estimate of 167 kronor. It’s advising clients to sell the shares.
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