Ann Summers S&M push gets M&S in a lather

Apr 20, 2011

Business digest: Department store takes legal advice over cheeky sex-shop promotion

Up-market sex shop chain Ann Summers could be in very hot water with venerable high-street institution Marks & Spencer thanks to it's latest promotion - the S&M Squeal Deal.

The idea, which is loosely based on the M&S meal deal, offers customers a selection of a "starter, main course and dessert" from its range of lingerie and sex toys for a fixed price.

The chain's chief executive Jacqueline Gold said the offer, which runs from April 21 to May 2 was nothing more than "a respectful nod" to M&S, although the packaging and campaign materials also bear a striking resemblance to the department store's.

The promotion's slogan - It's not just sex, it's Ann Summers sex - also has a familiar ring to it.

M&S appears far from amused by the ploy and has announced it is taking legal advice. A spokesman told Retail Week: "Marks & Spencer has built up a great reputation for quality and trust in the hearts and minds of the British public. When we believe these values are being infringed, we do whatever we can to protect our brand."

Read a full report at Retail Week.

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