Friday, April 1, 2011

Rotte Group Withdraws 'Take Our Place in Japan' Competition

In the wake of the tsunami which devastated Japan, Rotte Department Store, a Korean subsidiary of the Tokyo-based Rotte Group, have canceled a 'Take Our Place in Japan' competition after complaints from the public.

Rotte Group's founder and his family reportedly left Japan for Korea earlier this month at a time when many of Japan's fair-weather foreign residents decided to abandon their so-called Japanese friends to their fates and run away.

In an attempt to portray the move from Japan as unrelated to the threat of radioactivity bearing down on their Shinjuku headquarters, the competition was framed as a form of house swap, where competition winners would exchange their place in Korea for the places the company's management were vacating in Japan. Officially, the unlucky winners were to be sent to see 'cherry blossoms', but critics said that the company was sending its customers to a disaster-stricken country that even its own family members didn't want to stay in.

The bungled competition was doubly bad for the conglomerate, which likes to portray itself as an entirely South Korean company due to the fierce nationalism here. It was feared that the incident would also serve to highlight the group's Japanese base at a time when Koreans are particularly angry with Japan after the infamy of the Dokdo Betrayal.

Related Links
Lotte draws ire for bungled Japan trip promotion
Wikipedia: Lotte (conglomerate)

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