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Sunny Oils files complaint with ASCI for plagiarism by Aashirvaad Atta

The edible oil brand has accused that Aashirvaad Atta’s new ad, released in August 2016 has many similarities with the oil brand’s ads released in 2014 and earlier in 2016

BestMediaInfo Bureau | Mumbai | September 23, 2016

Sunny-Oils-Power-of-5-Campaign Click on the image to watch the TVC.

International edible oil brand, Sunny Lite, has recently filed a complaint with The Advertising Standards Council of India (ASCI) against Aashirvaad Atta brand over a TVC released in August 2016 that bears striking similarity to that of Sunny Oil’s advertisement that went on air in March 2016. According to the ASCI standards, this amounts to plagiarism as per clause 4.3.

Shweta Shrivastava, GM and Marketing Head of Sunny fortified oils, India, says, “It’s interesting that brands take inspiration from us to conceptualise TVCs but copying frame to frame is crossing the line of advertising norms. Such a striking resemblance to not just one but two campaigns cannot just be a coincidence and further strengthens our case. We have escalated this matter to the ASCI and are waiting for necessary action against Aashirvaad Atta brand. The advertising agency and production house/art directors should be held responsible for this act of plagiarism since the originality of ideas and creative is what they get paid for. While we can’t put a stop to plagiarism entirely but we can definitely rise against it so that brands take notice and join us in this fight.”

The Sunny Oils TVC focuses on the Power of five benefits of the oil and brand proposition – Promise of a Healthy Future. In February 2016, various edits of the film were shot and the campaign featuring Sonali Bendre has been on air since March 2016 over TV, print, outdoor and electronic media.

Aashirvaad Atta’s TVC was uploaded on YouTube in August ‘16 by Venus Productions and the advertising agency is McCann, Bangalore. Sunny Oils has claimed that the ad was similar to the Sunny Oils ads not just in concept, but also in many creative elements to both the launch campaign and the recent ‘Power of 5’ campaign of Sunny. The oil brand further accuses that some of the creative elements are copied exactly without any adaptation - the dress worn by the mother shown in the ad is exactly what Sonali Bendre was wearing in the Sunny launch campaign that went on air in 2014.

The oil brand has pointed out striking similarities between the Sunny Oil launch ad released in 2014 and ‘Power of 5’ campaign to the Ashirvaad Atta ad released in August 2016.

In response to Sunny Oils complaint, ASCI representative wrote back saying that they have called for comments from the advertiser of Aashirvaad Atta, and upon receiving their response, the complaint will be further considered for discussion by a panel set by the Consumer Complaints Council (CCC).

Sunny ‘Power of 5’ campaign was conceptualised by Bates CHI & Partners and the production house is Working I Films.

Asheesh Malhotra Asheesh Malhotra

“When we create any piece of communication, a lot of hard work goes not only in terms of production, but also the strategy which is a result of thinking and research. And try to create certain codes which are unique to that brand. Whether coincidental or not, the new TVC for Aashirvaad Atta, has too many similarities to Sunny refined oil TVC created by us, early this year, whether it is the key creative device or even the brand codes. Both, the agency and clients should be responsible and keep in mind that the communication they are developing for any brand does not have any such obvious similarities within or outside the category,” said Asheesh Malhotra, President, Head, Mumbai and Delhi, Bates CHI & Partners, the advertising agency who has conceptualized the Sunny ‘Power of 5’ campaign.

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