Nivea has responded after allegations of a homophobic comment were made on a call with their former advertising agency FCB.
According to trade publication Ad Age, which first reported about the alleged homophobic remarks, a person on the client team reportedly remarked, "we don't do gay at Nivea" while on a call with FCB creatives.
The comment is said to have come in response to a proposal from the agency’s creative team to produce a skincare advert featuring two men touching hands, but the campaign never ran.
The agency has since reportedly resigned its creative business with the Beiersdorf brand.
Yahoo UK has contacted Beiersdorf for comment, but a spokesperson for Beiersdorf AG told Campaign US this is "the right time for a new beginning in Nivea’s brand management and creative work."
Though the allegations were not directly addressed, Nivea did point out such behaviour would not be tolerated.
"We understand that emotions and news interest are intensified when a longtime business relationship comes to an end,” the spokesperson continued.
“However, we ask for understanding that we don’t comment on unsubstantiated speculations around this matter.
"Nonetheless we wish to express our concern on the reported allegations as they do not reflect the values of Beiersdorf, Nivea and our employees worldwide. No form of discrimination, direct and indirect, is or will be tolerated. We are strongly committed to diversity, mutual respect, equal opportunity and tolerance - this stance and belief is shared and lived throughout Beiersdorf.”
The statement went on to point out that the company is proud of it’s diversity.
"We are an international company with more than 20,000 employees with very different genders, ethnicities, orientations, backgrounds and personalities worldwide. Through our products, we touch millions of consumers around the globe every day. We know and cherish that individuality and diversity in all regards brings inspiration and creativity to our society and to us as a company."
Yahoo UK has also contacted FCB for comment and will update the article if we receive a response.
Another homophobic row was kick-started earlier this year after a vegan restaurant fired an employee who secretly filmed customers and used homophobic and racial slurs to describe them.
And back in May dental care brand Listerine was criticised for releasing a “gay pride” themed mouthwash bottle design.