Nivea Sorry for Ad Urging Black Guy to 'Re-Civilize'

Parent company says ad inappropriate, offensive
By Kevin Spak,  Newser Staff
Posted Aug 19, 2011 12:10 PM CDT
NIVEA found itself in hot water.   (PRNewsFoto/NIVEA)

(Newser) – Hey African-American men, does your afro make you feel ... like a savage? Because Nivea for Men seems to be betting that it does. The company is under fire for a new ad bearing the slogan “Re-Civilize Yourself” over an image of a black man holding the head of his old, less-civilized self by the afro. The brand’s parent company, Beiersdorf USA, apologized immediately when asked for comment by AdWeek, promising it would never run again.

“We are deeply sorry,” the company said in an email. "This ad was inappropriate and offensive. Diversity and equal opportunity are crucial values at Beiersdorf and we do not tolerate insensitivity." A source also noted that the ad had only run once—it appeared in an issue of Esquire. Of course, AdWeek managed to grab a shot of it. Click to see it.

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