ANA Pulls Television Commercial on New Flights After Complaints

ANA Holdings Inc. (9202), Japan’s biggest airline, pulled a television commercial advertising new flights after receiving comments that it was inappropriate.

The carrier stopped airing the spot on national television yesterday and will make a new commercial after receiving “various comments,” Etsuya Uchiyama, a spokesman at the Tokyo-based company, said by phone today.

The commercial shows two Japanese men talking in English about the start of new ANA flights from Tokyo’s Haneda airport, and one of them dons a blond wig and fake nose after the other suggests changing Japanese people’s image. ANA’s official Facebook page received postings saying the advertisement was offensive when it started running on national TV on Jan. 18.

“The commercial was intended to be a humorous way of highlighting the increased number of international services ANA is operating from Haneda Airport,” the company said in a statement. “It was not our intention to cause offense and we apologize to anyone who was upset by the advertisement.”

ANA is starting new flights to London, Paris, Vancouver, Hanoi and other cities starting March 30 after receiving more international daytime slots at Haneda airport.

To contact the reporters on this story: Chris Cooper in Tokyo at ccooper1@bloomberg.net; Kiyotaka Matsuda in Tokyo at kmatsuda@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Kiyotaka Matsuda at kmatsuda@bloomberg.net

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