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Samsonite asked to drop “Bullfight” ad
20 October 2010

Luggage company Samsonite has been urged to drop a new “Bullfight” advertisement which shows a matador baiting a bull with a red suitcase. ICABS has expressed disappointment to the company over the ad which features a real matador.

"It is very regrettable that Samsonite finds it appropriate to associate its brand name with the world's most cruel and barbaric blood sport," we stated in an email today. "Many would surely agree that using a bullfighting theme in a marketing campaign is in very poor taste indeed."

We pointed out that matadors, similar to the one depicted in the ad, are responsible for the slow torture to death of thousands of bulls every year. Each bullfight event sees the merciless killing of six or more bulls. Horseback riders firstly weaken the bull by stabbing its body with sharp lances. To force it to drop its head, spears are then driven into its neck muscles. The cruelty culminates with a stabbing through the heart with a sword.

On its website, the design company which produced the ad refers to a "dreamlike environment" being presented to viewers. In reality, ICABS told Samsonite, bullrings and their associated torture represent a nightmare environment filled with cut up flesh, impaled muscle, severe pain, blood loss, terror and death. Describing the presentation as "a dramatic face-off between graceful Matador and majestic bull", they go on to reveal that a real matador (Christian Aparicio) was cast for "authenticity, passion and movement".

See a photo of matador, Christian Aparicio, holding a sword and cape in front of a bleeding, injured bull in a bullring
Samsonite is displaying the matador and bull image on their homepage: See it Here

This offensive image is on display on the Samsonite website's homepage.


Please join us in our appeal to Samsonite to drop the offensive "Bullfight" advert. If the ad would make you avoid purchasing Samsonite products, please point this out in your correspondence.

Samsonite UK
Tel +44 20 8561 4043

Samsonite USA
Tim Parker
Executive Chairman
Samsonite Corporation
575 West Street
Suite 110,
Mansfield, MA 02048

Phone: 800-765 2247 (USA)
Phone: +1 508 841 1400
Fax: +1 508 851 8715

Dear Samsonite,

I am one of the majority of people opposed to bullfighting. This shameful activity causes unimaginable suffering to bulls - they are tortured and persecuted in bullrings, stabbed with lances and spears and killed with a sword through the heart.

I am disgusted that Samsonite has chosen to use a bullfighting theme in its latest advert for the Spinners suitcase. Matadors like the one depicted in the ad are responsible for the slow torture to death of thousands of bulls every year.

Please recognise how inappropriate it is to associate your product with bullfighting and drop this offensive advert immediately.

Thank you. I look forward to your reply.

Yours sincerely,



We understand from a report on that the Samsonite "Bullfight" ad is due to be screened on CNN Airport Network which comprises 2,000 screens across 46 American airports. Please join us in our appeal to CNN to reject the ad on the grounds that it is likely to cause offense to the majority who oppose bullfighting.

or via

Dear CNN Airport Network,

I am one of the majority opposed to bullfighting. I appeal to you not to screen the Samsonite 'Bullfight' commercial which uses a bullfighting theme to promote a suitcase. I find this commercial highly offensive in that it presents a distorted, sanitised view of an activity which is one of the world's worst acts of cruelty to animals. I fear that it may encourage holidaymakers to consider visiting a bullring when they arrive in a bullfighting country. Many unsuspecting tourists who visit bullrings leave shocked and upset at witnessing merciless violence and scenes of animal torture.

I hope CNN Airport Network will consider these points and reject the Samsonite commercial.

Thank you. I look forward to your reply.

Yours sincerely,


Video and Photos: The Cruelty of Bullfighting

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Bullfighting: More information

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