Target Loses $9 Billion in Market Value After Boycott
BY MATT MARGOLIS
Republished below in full unedited for informational, educational, & research purposes.
Target has faced enormous criticism for its recent efforts to cater to the transgender community in recent weeks after the national retailer introduced a “Pride collection” across its stores, featuring merchandise, clothing, and books promoting transgender-friendly messages and leftist gender ideology. What made this particularly troubling was that the products were not just for adults but also for young children and babies. Target also ensured that these products were prominently displayed at the front of its stores, forcing everyone who entered to be exposed to its rainbow-colored propaganda.
In response to the mounting backlash, Target held an emergency meeting and instructed certain store locations, mainly in rural Southern areas, to relocate and reduce the size of their Pride sections to avoid a situation similar to the Bud Light controversy.
“I think given the current situation with Bud Light, the company is terrified of a Bud Light situation,” a Target insider said.
Well, it looks like they couldn’t contain the damage. Just a week ago, Target’s stock closed at $160.96 per share, resulting in a market capitalization of $74.3 billion. However, early trading on Thursday showed a 1% decrease, with shares trading at $141.76. As a result, the market value has fallen to $65.3 billion — a 12% drop and a staggering loss of $9 billion in market capitalization.
Boycotts are generally seen as ineffective for various reasons. However, the boycott of Anheuser-Busch and Bud Light, prompted by their controversial partnership with Dylan Mulvaney, a TikTok influencer who pretends to be a girl, defied precedent. The boycott resulted in a significant decrease in demand for Bud Light, with sales down more than 28%. Anheuser-Busch has lost a reported $16 billion in market value since the boycott began. Now, the Target boycott appears to have had a similar impact on its business as the Bud Light boycott.
Anheuser-Busch is desperately trying to repair the damage done to its brand, and so far, those efforts have been unsuccessful. Will Target have a similar mea culpa in light of its stock tanking?
At the moment, the answer is no. The CEO of Target, Brian Cornell, recently expressed that he thinks going woke is good for the company.
“I think those are just good business decisions, and it’s the right thing for society, and it’s the great thing for our brand,” Cornell said. “The things we’ve done from a DE&I [diversity, equity, and inclusion] standpoint, it’s adding value.”
He added, “It’s helping us drive sales, it’s building greater engagement with both our teams and our guests, and those are just the right things for our business today.”
Will Cornell think differently after what’s happening to Target’s stock?
Related: We Haven’t Won Against Target Yet
Not yet. According to an internal company email, Target is still woke as ever, transitioning (see what I did there?) from its sadness over the backlash to its pride collection to acknowledging the three-year anniversary of George Floyd’s death and offering resources to employees who might need some emotional support.
“Yesterday was a very hard day for Target, and as CEO Brian Cornell said, thank you for the care you’ve shown each other, our frontline teams, and the LGBTQIA+ community,” the email began. “Today brings more reflection, pain, and the need for continued care as our team, hometown, and world remember the anniversary of the murder of George Floyd. As you make space to take care of yourself and each other, know that you can always tap into these tools from Team Member Life Resources, and as Mental Health Awareness Month continues, turn to the Take Five to Take Care hub for more well-being support.”
Unlike Anheuser-Busch, Target clearly hasn’t realized it made a mistake. The company fully endorses wokeism and believes it’s the company’s future. It’s going to take a lot more to change the culture of Target.