An ad agency reveals the “fundamental reason” why the domino of reviewing Johnny’s’s commercials has not stopped. | FRIDAY DIGITAL

An ad agency reveals the “fundamental reason” why the domino of reviewing Johnny’s’s commercials has not stopped.

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Nissan Motor, where Takuya Kimura is a commercial character, has also begun talks about a future contract

Johnny’s is in a tight spot.

On September 7, the company held a press conference regarding the sex assault issue of its founder, Janie Kitagawa, and announced the resignation of Keiko Fujishima Julie as president and the appointment of Noriyuki Higashiyama of “Shonen-tai” as the new president. Although he promised “compensation beyond the law” for the sexual assault victims, the headwinds have not abated but have intensified.

One of the reasons for this is that the “Johnny’s” office has been retained.

At a press conference, the new president, Mr. Higashiyama, said, “There are opinions that a dismantling review is necessary.

We are aware that many people have been affected by the situation, based on the opinion that a dismantling review is necessary. Perhaps it would be better to change the name and make a fresh start. But from now on, I think we need to work hard enough to get rid of our image.”

However, “Janie Kitagawa” was a clear perpetrator of sexual assault, and a company name bearing the deceased’s name is unthinkable in common sense. Furthermore, although Mr. Julie resigned as president, he is not the representative director and still owns 100% of the company’s stock. Despite the “Special Recurrence Prevention Team’s” call for a “dismantling review,” Mr. Julie remains the owner of the company.

The client companies that use Japanese celebrities reacted to this situation.

On the 7th, the day of the press conference, Tokio Marine & Nichido Fire Insurance, which features Masaki Aiba, announced that it was considering canceling its advertising contract. Japan Airlines also announced that it would not use Aiba in its advertisements.

On the 8th, two major beverage manufacturers, Asahi Group Holdings and Kirin Holdings, announced that they would not develop new advertisements or sales promotions. The former used Kazunari Ninomiya, Ryosuke Yamada, and four others for Asahi Beer’s Clear Asahi product, and Junichi Okada and Toma Ikuta for Super Dry Nama Jokkikan.

The latter company uses Ren Meguro for Kirin Beverage’s “Afternoon Tea,” and Daiki Shigeoka for its members-only draft beer service, Home Tap.

The “review domino” continues unabated. Nippon Life Insurance has announced that it will “not” use any new Japanese celebrities in its commercials in the future. Nissan Motor Co., for which Takuya Kimura is a commercial character, has also begun discussions regarding future contracts.

There are more than 100 clients, large and small, that use Japanese celebrities. First of all, the national client, which everyone knows, has taken a tough stance.

What does that mean? It means that the “reform plan” of the Johnny’s office is insufficient. I think the domino of reviewing commercials will continue in the future.

From the perspective of the media, it will be extremely difficult for Japanese talents to obtain new commercials in the future.

For example, suppose a Japanese celebrity becomes the image character of a new product. Naturally, the company would want to hold a PR event with the mass media. However, the media would surely ask the Japanese celebrity what he or she thought about the series of sexual assaults.

If the PR firms do not want them to do so and inform them that they are not allowed to ask questions that have nothing to do with the event, they will write about it. Some media outlets will write, ‘We avoided commenting on sexual assault.

As a client, you are at an event for a new product, but you are being hijacked by the topic of sexual assault. This is not PR, but rather a negative. In other words, we can’t hit the event.”

A reporter in charge of entertainment at a sports newspaper predicted as much. Sexual assault of minors is one of the most internationally despised crimes. The new president, Higashiyama, has said that he will do his utmost to erase the image of the company, but there is no chance of restoring Mr. Janney’s honor.

He is a “tremendous negative legacy. The talent is blameless, but since the series of sex-abuse problems, the commercial fees of Johnny’s talents have plummeted. I think the longer the turmoil drags on, the more damage will accumulate.

The press conference was supposed to end the fuss, but it unexpectedly turned out to be a fuel dump. It may not be long before the Johnny’s’s office holds another press conference.

  • PHOTO Ippei Hara

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