A fintech startup is under fire for a Valentine’s Day advertisement. The said ad has been slammed for mocking single people and is now facing a possible probe from the financial watchdog of the United Kingdom.
The Tube advert of Revolut resulted in complaints online after the ad addressed people who had apparently ordered a takeaway that is good for one last Valentine’s Day.
The ad read: “To the 12,750 people who ordered a single takeaway on Valentine’s Day. You okay, hun?”
Various complaints have been received by the Advertising Standards Authority after a financial journalist criticised the advertisement on Twitter.
The founder of the Young Money Blog, Iona Bain, accused the ad of being “crass, cringe, uncool and creepy.”
She also disputed the data, by saying: “Is this even true? Your banking data doesn’t show exactly what’s being bought, only where you’re buying from and the total amount, so either they know exactly what a takeaway for 1 costs from every possible outlet that’s selling them…or they are completely making it up.”
A spokesperson for the ASA, stated: “We received a small number of complaints in connection with the Revolut ads. Where these make claims about the product or service it falls within the remit of the FCA, and we have passed on complaints that deal with these for their consideration.”
The FCA did not comment regarding the matter.
Revolut has since said that it is “sad” that a “small number of people” were offended by the ad.
Reportedly, the challenger bank has admitted that it made up the figures in the campaign, which also said that 11,867 people had bought a Greggs vegan sausage roll this February, adding: “Piers is fuming.”
A statement that was sent by Revolut to the Independent read: “The purpose of this ad was not to take the mickey out of anyone, but to show solidarity with our fellow singles – with a dash of humour. However, with the current copy, I can appreciate that a small number of people have interpreted it differently, but that was not our intention.”
It added: “Fortunately, going by the original BBC article with over 400 comments, the overwhelming majority of people are clearly not offended by the ad, and that’s encouraging. Nonetheless, we’ll take a deep look at this and learn from this as we go forward.”
The campaign of Revolut has been compared to the 2016 campaign of Spotify, which mocked a user who had listened to a “Forever Alone” playlist on Valentine’s Day.
That advert was also criticised as being “creepy, voyeuristic and a little bit mean.”