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What will become of the Trump brand after he leaves office?

Hugo Martín, Los Angeles Times on

Published in Business News

For Donald Trump, the cost of an incendiary presidential career started adding up on Day One: Macy's department stores stopped selling his menswear collection after he called Mexican immigrants "rapists" during his first campaign event.

A few months later, after Trump called for a "total and complete shutdown" of Muslims entering the United States, he lost another partner, a Dubai company that had a license to sell Trump furniture in the Middle East, Africa and India.

Since then, his outrageous comments and controversial presidential actions have lost his business empire a slate of lucrative partners and investors.

In the wake of the Washington deadly riots by Trump supporters that led to a second impeachment, a fresh wave of businesses have canceled partnerships and contracts with Trump, tarnishing a once-lucrative brand so badly that hospitality experts and brand reputation consultants say it may never recover.

"That dumpster fire he created is one of the single worst moves for his brand ever," said Eric Schiffer, chairman of Reputation Management Consultants.

Alan X. Reay, president of Atlas Hospitality Group, agreed.

 

"What happened last week [during the riots] is a huge tarnishing of the brand, and I don't see how it recovers," he said.

Since the Jan. 6 riots, the list of businesses and governments distancing themselves from Trump has grown to include Deutsche Bank, Signature Bank, the PGA, the city of New York, commercial property brokerage firm Cushman & Wakefield and JLL, the firm working to sell Trump International Hotel in Washington.

"What you are going to see is the unwillingness of corporate America to stay at some of his branded facilities or to play golf in Trump golf courses or to engage in any business activities with the Trump brand," said Eric Rose, a partner at the lobbying and communication crisis firm EKA.

Many other businesses have vowed to stop contributing to the campaigns of politicians who refused to accept that Trump lost his reelection bid, including Marriott International, Blue Cross Blue Shield Assn., Dow Chemical, Hallmark and Verizon Communications.

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