P&G Stock: How Much Damage will the Gillette Ad Do?

P&G Stock

How is Procter & Gamble (NYSE:PG) doing since the company released the rather controversial Gillette ‘We Believe’ ad? For all the likes and dislikes the ad is receiving, how has it actually affected P&G stock?

Is it better to be talked about than not talked about? Let’s find out!

P&G Stock: Gillette Ad

For those not in the know, the ‘We Believe’ ad is a two-minute video that effectively comments on the contentious ‘toxic masculinity’ topic. Encouraging men to disavow expectations of manhood, such as burying emotion or being aggressive, the ad—in effect—calls for men to ‘be better.’ If you haven’t already seen it, here it is:

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Since the Gillette ad was released on Tuesday, the internet has blown up. There have been calls to boycott the brand and an all-too-palpable outpouring of anger. The clip has been attacked by men’s rights activists, media commentators, and celebrities.

Here’s show-host Pierce Morgan’s opinion, for example:

“I’ve used Gillette razors my entire adult life but this absurd virtue-signaling PC guff may drive me away to a company less eager to fuel the current pathetic global assault on masculinity. Let boys be damn boys. Let men be damn men.”

Such is the outrage, the ad is now in line to become the most ‘disliked’ video on YouTube.

So the dust has been kicked up, but is Gillette’s parent company P&G’s stock suffering?

The Verdict

Well, yes… but not as much as you may have thought considering the media circus. The morning of January 15th (ad release date) saw the stock shoot up from $91.15 to $92.52 USD in the first 1.5 hours of trade. So it actually appeared investors favored the bold new campaign—perhaps they weren’t to foresee the upset it would cause.

From then on, however, the stock has been steadily declining. Two days on, and it is valued at $90.61, down -0.76% at the time of writing.

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The current price is only $1.46 less than its value before the ad was released and surely the frenzy will soon die down. Considering the backlash from the ad, investors don’t appear to be that phased. After all, a mass boycott of Gillette products wouldn’t actually happen, would it? (How would we shave?)

Talked About

P&G stock is more than capable of licking its wounds here. And if Nike (NYSE:NKE) is anything to go by, then it is better to be talked about. Ironically, the sportswear giant saw its sales surge 31% amidst the mania surrounding its Colin Kaepernick ad campaign. The footwear giant unveiled Kaepernick as the face of its brand after he was the first NFL player to take a knee during the national anthem two years prior.

Controversy ensued, but Nike came out as victor none-the-less, with a 17% comparable increase on 2017.

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