Yesterday morning, 30 April, a 45-second video was uploaded on Twitter. The somewhat wholesome clip, first posted on TikTok by a Bonia employee, showed some of the perks of working with Bonia.
The video opens with the point of view of the said employee sharing her first month of experience at Bonia, a Malaysia-based international luxury fashion retailer known for its handbags and shoes.
The 45-second video showed scenes such as a "comfortable workspace, unlimited snack supplies, free Inside Scoop, free lunch once a month, field trips, and gifts", among other benefits for the employees.
While originally uploaded on TikTok, a check by SAYS showed that the video is no longer available on the said employee's personal account. However, due to another individual reposting it on Twitter, the video continues to remain available for viewing and has gone viral on the micro-blogging platform.
The same individual who reposted the video on Twitter also included screenshots of the comments posted under the original TikTok upload
The screenshots of the comments showed that the video gave the impression that only those of Chinese ethnicity work in Bonia. This led to people alleging that the company was not racially diverse in its hiring.
Following which, some remarked that they are no longer interested in buying Bonia products.
On Twitter, too, many called to boycott Bonia for its alleged discriminatory hiring practices.
SAYS is choosing to not link/embed the tweet or the video in this story.
Amidst the growing calls for its boycott on Twitter, Bonia released an official statement on Saturday night to address and clear any misconceptions the viral video gave about it as a company
In the statement, the company said that it has always taken pride in nurturing an inclusive work culture.
"Diversity in a workplace is important not only for personal career development but integral for us as a progressive lifestyle brand. We are, and have always been, a company that prides itself on nurturing inclusive work culture," Bonia said, adding, "From our board of directors to our managerial and office staff and frontliners, we are proud to have talents who come from various backgrounds."
According to Bonia, the video portrays only a part of the company and does not reflect it in its entirety.
"Please rest assured that we are actively nurturing diversity from our internal hiring policies and protocols to our training for staff. We highly value our loyal customers' views and will always continue to make their brand experience with is better. We hope for your kind understanding," the statement read.
In March, a clip of the founder and designer behind Singapore-based womenswear Ong Shunmugam went viral on Instagram. In it, Priscilla Shunmugam made racist remarks against Malay and Indian women: