When tensions are rising in the LGBTQIA+ community ahead of June’s Pride Month, Target’s pride page encourages customers to “celebrate all year long.”
But fears of a public relations hit on par with what was experienced by Bud Light have spooked Target.
Their participation in initiatives to profit off of LGBTQ advertising and items has proven to be a risk.
Even though CEO Brian Cornell praised DEI (diversity, equality, and inclusion) as having benefited the business, the retailer’s stock price has fallen 10.24% in the previous month and about 10% since its March 17 peak.
TheStreet stated that for more than a week, people have been calling for a boycott of Target on Twitter because of the store’s pride branding and LGBTQ-inclusive children’s and babywear.
On March 17, Target’s CEO Brian Cornell began praising the retailer for its LGBTQ-welcoming merchandise. That was the day of Target’s stock price peak.
Cornell said that s most Americans frequent Target; he felt a responsibility to help American families. Cornell said those are just intelligent business moves that benefit society and our company’s reputation.
DEI efforts were praised as a moneymaker by Cornell.
Target hit a high of $162.43 at 11 a.m. ET on March 17 before closing at $160.96, and hasn’t recovered, closing at $147.16 on Tuesday.
Target’s Twitter account has been mostly dormant since October 2022, just days after Elon Musk took over as CEO, suggesting the retailer participates in a self-imposed political boycott.
After using transgender social media star and President Joe Biden supporter Dylan Mulvaney to promote its beer in early April, Anheuser-Busch has been facing outrage and a seemingly unending firestorm.
Shares of Anheuser-Busch had dropped $7.99, or almost 12%, to $58.74 on Tuesday from their close on March 31, the Friday before Mulvaney made a Twitter appearance to boast about the personalized Bud Light cans and collaboration.
About $16 billion in market value has been erased as a result of the decline.
Target has obviously taken notice.