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Good news from France. Recently, several large French companies have decided to distance themselves from the bloody bullfights. These are very important steps in our struggle, because the bullfighting sector is more and more dependent on subsidies and sponsoring from companies in order to survive. Due to years of declining interest from the public, the sector is no longer lucrative.
The famous French hotel chain Novotel has decided to no longer associate itself with the bullfighting sector. Novotel has more than 400 hotels and resorts in 60 countries with a 4-star classification.
In mid-September, a meeting of the bullfighting association Antonio Ordòñez - Nîmes was held in Nîmes at the Novotel Atria Nîmes Centre. The meeting was about the future of the novillada, a kind of bullfight with young bulls. An important novillada would also take place in the French city, on 16 September. The Novotel logo was seen on the advertising poster.
Our French colleagues contacted the Novotel head office. They informed them that no partnership had been established with the bullfighting association and that the logo had been used without their knowledge. Novotel explicitly requested the removal of their logo and the images in which it appears. This has not yet been done by the association. But it is a very positive step that a renowned hotel such as Novotel has distanced itself so clearly from this cruel industry.
Bullring Nîmes © Pixabay
Banque de Suez
Our French colleagues also contacted the international bank Banque de Suez. This bank used to be a partner of the bullring of the French city of Béziers, which is used for bullfights and novilladas. Banque de Suez recently informed our colleagues that they will no longer sponsor the bullfights. Great news!
In the meantime Banque de Suez has demanded the removal of its logo from the bullring.
And also the central bank Crédit Agricole has distanced itself from bullfighting. Another great victory for the bulls! Our French colleagues contacted the bank about bullfighting. Crédit Agricole is the largest French financial company and the second largest financial company in Europe.
Our French colleagues tell us that the people of Crédit Agricole with whom they spoke were very sympathetic and responded very quickly to their request.
"It is with great honour that they informed us that they distance themselves from Spanish bullfighting and the cruelty inflicted on the animals during these spectacles."
This is not the first time that bullfighting organisers announce past sponsorships that are no longer current. With this, they try to encourage other companies to become sponsors too. The bullfighting industry is desperately looking for new partners, because more and more companies no longer want to be associated with animal abuse. Bullfighting gives a bad image to companies, because the aversion from society is growing steadily.
Our French colleagues received a letter from Crédit Agricole. We share part of the content of the letter, because it illustrates the working method of the bullfighting sector: overriding companies by using their logos - without permission.
"In response to your e-mail of 20/08/2021, in which you mention the presence of our logo on the websites of Toros en Garlin and Pentecôtavic, we would like to inform you that this surprises us, because we no longer sponsor the two mentioned associations.
It is difficult for us to keep a close eye on all the event organisers in our region regarding the use of our logo. Therefore, as soon as we became aware of this information, we immediately demanded that the parties concerned remove us from their list of partners.
This withdrawal has been in effect since 03/09/2021 and we assure you that we will remain vigilant to ensure that these failures are not repeated."
In August, our French colleagues achieved another important success. The insurance company Groupama no longer wants to be associated with bullfighting.
One or more members of two local agencies in the south of France had taken the liberty of sponsoring the bullfight. But even worse, without permission they had organised a novillada bearing the name of the insurance company: the trophy of the chaquetilla d'or Groupama.
During the novillada, several young bulls would be killed. Our French colleagues contacted Groupama, who informed them in writing that they rejected any support for the bullfight.
This confirms that the bullfighting industry can no longer benefit from Groupama to finance or organise these bloody spectacles.
Insurance company MMA has also distanced itself from bullfighting. Their name too was unsolicited linked to bullfighting. Our French colleagues received this letter from MMA:
"Dear Madam, Sir,
Thank you for informing us of this sponsorship of which we were unaware. This initiative comes from one of our agencies that had not asked us for advice before.
We would like to state that MMA does not support these types of events, which in no way reflect the values of our brand and our network of agents.
MMA does not support events that cause animal suffering (bullfighting, novilladas, etc.) or the teaching of bullfighting to young children and adolescents.
As soon as you reported this, we contacted our agent, who immediately ended this sponsorship. Our agent has also agreed not to renew his support for this event.
Founder Ecocirque is against bullfighting
Not only the above-mentioned companies have recently spoken out against bullfighting, celebrities have done so as well. André-Joseph Bouglione signed the manifesto of the organisation FLAC against bullfighting. He is the founder of a 100 per cent humane Ecocirque - a circus where no animals are used and everything is ecologically sound.
André-Joseph Bouglione and his wife, Sandrine © No Corrida
The start of the Ecocirque received a lot of publicity a few years ago, when Bouglione announced that he would no longer use wild or other animals. This announcement was supported by the publication of a book entitled "Contre l'exploitation animale" in which he shares his memoirs and describes his approach. This is a work he wrote together with our colleague Roger Lahana, secretary in the board of FLAC. It describes his extraordinary and inspiring journey: from former tiger tamer to founder of the first French circus without animals.
During the preparation of this book, he had already confided to Roger Lahana that he deeply disliked the cruelty of bullfighting. All that remained was to find an opportunity to sign FLAC's manifesto. This finally happened at the premiere of the Ecocirque on 11 September in Montpellier. The premiere was a great success and attracted a lot of media attention in France.
81% of French people against bullfighting
It is scandalous how the bullfighting industry works, using the logos of renowned companies, unsolicited, to attract new sponsors. Fortunately, these companies distanced themselves from the bloody bullfights after our French colleagues contacted them about it. Opposition to the killing of animals for entertainment is growing in all layers of French society.
According to the French organisation Alliance Anticorrida, 81% of French people are against bullfighting in which a bull is put to death. 76% think that there should be an alternative without blood. In addition, four out of every five French people think that bullfighting is not an appropriate spectacle for minors. And of every 10 French people, 8 disapprove bullfighting because it causes animal suffering.
We would like to thank our French colleagues for their efforts to make French companies aware of the animal suffering during bullfights. In particular, we thank Sabrina Djordjievska (Cazarrata), Dominique Arizmendi (No Corrida) and Philippe Bricault. They are our colleagues in the International Network Against Bullfighting.