Stefan Heidenreich, who joined as the head of the executive board at Beiersdorf in January 2012, after replacing out-going CEO Thomas Quaas, has told German media that the star is a not appropriate for the Nivea brand and the type of image the company wants for it.
“The advert starring Rihanna was a no go. I do not understand how Nivea can be brought into association with Rihanna,” said Heidenreich.
Nivea family values clash with Rihanna's cutting edge image
Nivea is a global brand which has been marketed by the company with a traditional family image, which has been built up over the years to be one of the best recognized and trusted across Europe and beyond.
In the television advertisement for the Nivea skin care products, a family is shown using a range of Nivea skin care products, while the Rihanna track ‘California King Bed’ plays in the background.
The official video for the song features the Barbadian star in scant clothing and is considered to be sexually suggestive, in line with her cutting edge and provocative image.
Nivea bought Rihanna in for its 100th anniversary
Last year the Nivea brand saw a significant transformation, with the streamlining of the product range and the exit from the make-up business, followed by a driven marketing campaign for the brand’s 100th anniversary that bought Rihanna on board.
The campaign has been two years in the making, is designed to utilise the digital space, and was timed to cash in on the brand ambassador, Rihanna’s 2011 tour.
This included getting fan access to Rihanna's tour, virtual photo-taking with the star and Nivea is also leveraging its endorsement with an interactive video and augmented reality app on its US Facebook page.