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The Perfume Shop hits out at BBC’s digital radio adverts

A senior director at The Perfume Shop has today criticised the new digital radio advertising campaign being broadcast by the BBC. The Perfume Shop, which has over 160 stores and is the UK’s largest fragrance-only retailer, is angered that the BBC’s new ad campaign is encouraging the public to avoid purchasing traditional Christmas gifts like bottles of aftershave. Instead, the BBC is running regular radio ads suggesting Christmas shoppers buy digital radios so that they can listen to future BBC broadcasting output.

The Perfume Shop is today to lodging an official complaint with the BBC’s regulator, the BBC Trust. The Perfume Shop will request that an investigation takes place in order to determine whether BBC guidelines have been broken. They will also be writing to Director General of the BBC, Mark Thompson. The Perfume Shop believes other high street retailers and product manufacturers may also choose to complain.

Jeremy Seigal, Managing Director of The Perfume Shop, said:

“The BBC should not be trying to influence what people buy at Christmas solely to promote and protect its own broadcasting future. Their message that aftershave is not a ‘good’ present is wrong. Each Christmas we sell over one million bottles of aftershave but sadly, our advertising budgets will never be able to match the massive impact of the thousands of ‘free’ adverts so far run by the BBC.

“If the BBC must advertise, then possibly it should stick to promoting its own programmes rather than broadcasting negative messages about products which are bought in the High Street?”

As well as bottles of aftershave, the BBC is also encouraging the public to avoid buying products such as Christmas jumpers and socks. The adverts are running on the BBC’s main terrestrial channels, radio stations and also online.

John Ayres, Chairman of The Fragrance Foundation UK said,
"This is irresponsible advertising by the BBC. With all the economic forecasters pointing to a poor Christmas and this holiday season being the most important trading time for retailers and fragrances in particular, the BBC should be promoting their own services rather than attempting to deprive other companies of Christmas sales. If the BBC was a more commercial operation and accepted advertising on its stations, it might be a little more careful whom it chose to offend!"

The BBC has recently come under criticism for its overt promotion of Robinsons as the sponsor of the Sporting Personality of the Year.

For further press information/images please contact:
Julia Bolsom, Head of PR at The Perfume Shop 01494 894054
Jonathan Kirkby e: t: 020 7395 0500
Or Nick Fulford e: t: 0207 395 0500

Notes for editors
The Perfume Shop, is the UK’s largest specialist fragrance retailer with 160 shops across the length and breadth of the UK.

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