IKEA to pull 'sexist' advert in China following backlash

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By Alice Cuddy
IKEA to pull 'sexist' advert in China following backlash

Swedish furniture giant IKEA has said it will pull a television advert in China amid complaints from viewers of sexism.

The 30-second commercial showed a Chinese mother telling her daughter: “don’t call me your mum if you can’t bring back a boyfriend.”

When the daughter returned with a boyfriend, the family prepared a banquet, as a caption across the screen stated: “celebrate every day easily.”

The advert was met with criticism on Chinese social media platform Weibo, with users describing it as “sexist”, “disappointing” and “twisted”.

In a statement posted on its official Weibo account on Tuesday (October 24), IKEA said it understood concern over the advert and apologised “for giving the wrong perception”.

“This TV ad tried to show how IKEA can help customers easily and affordably convert a typical living room into a place for celebration. The purpose was to help customers to celebrate moments in everyday life.

“IKEA encourages people to live different lifestyles, and this belief is reflected in our product design and home furnishing solutions,” the statement said.

The company added that it was thankful for the “candid feedback”, which had provided “a good opportunity… to learn and do better in the future”.