20 companies pull ads from O'Reilly's show

They joined Mercedes Benz, which said Monday it was backing away from O'Reilly's show.

Major auto brands have chose to pull advertising from a popular Fox News program following reports of sexual harassment involving host Bill O'Reilly. O'Reilly generates more than $100 million in annual advertising revenue, according to independent studies.

The advertiser boycotts, however, are likely manageable for Fox, said Pivotal Research Group analyst Brian Wieser in a note Tuesday.

A dozen major advertisers, ranging from automakers Hyundai and BMW, to financial firm T. Rowe Price, insurer Allstate and drugmaker GlaxoSmithKline, have pulled their ads from "The O'Reilly Factor".

Removing O'Reilly could prove hard and costly, though.

"The O'Reilly Factor" is Fox News' top rated show and its viewership has continued to climb in the past year, reported The Associated Press. It is also a tent-pole show upon which the rest of the conservative-leaning network depends. The network hasn't addressed whether O'Reilly has faced discipline. "But if there's one thing that puts any talent at risk it's advertisers".

A spokesperson for Chevrolet told BuzzFeed News the company had not purchased national advertising on Fox News since the last quarter of 2016, but it is likely a dealer bought an ad.

Fox News recently extended O'Reilly's contact for an indefinite period time at $18 million a year.

"In light of the recent New York Times investigation, BMW of North America has suspended its advertising with 'The O'Reilly Factor, '" a BMW spokesperson said in a statement on Tuesday. The network's No. 1 star, Bill O'Reilly, has been accused of crude and vindictive behavior toward women. "The allegations are disturbing and, given the importance of women in every aspect of our business, we don't feel this is a good environment in which to advertise our products right now".

And weight loss and nutrition company Jenny Craig told BuzzFeed News it condemns all forms of sexual assault, but refused to publicly comment on its advertising strategy.

Wieser noted some advertisers had already made a decision to stay way following the sexual harassment scandals of the network's departed head, Roger Ailes, and newly concerned companies will wind up on other Fox News programs.

"The worst part of my job is being a target for those who would harm me and my employer, the Fox News Channel". It's watched more than any other cable network, including the entertainment ones, and O'Reilly leads the way.

In September, Fox News settled with former on-air host Gretchen Carlson for a reported $20m after she alleged she had also been sexually harassed by Mr Ailes. Ailes, who has denied the allegations, received US$40m in severance.

But Fox has struggled to put the issue behind it. In a complaint filed in NY state Supreme Court on Monday, April 3, 2017, Roginsky said she was pressured to defend Ailes when Gretchen Carlson filed the initial harassment complaint against him but that she refused.

Expedia Inc., the online travel company, said it was still deciding what to do.

Roginsky said in her suit that Shine was at fault for "failing to take reasonable measures to protect Roginsky from the unlawful conduct". "I don't think they connect the two of them at all". "They need to make a clean break", even by taking the painful step of suspending or firing O'Reilly. In the past, both have been quick to defend him.

Hyundai said it would remove forthcoming ads from The O'Reilly Factor because of the "recent and disturbing allegations". "At this time, the ad buys of those clients have been re-expressed into other FNC programs". In a statement over the weekend, Fox News' parent company 21st Century Fox said it "takes matters of workplace behavior very seriously" but stood by O'Reilly.

In a statement, O'Reilly says he is "vulnerable to lawsuits" from those who want him to pay to avoid negative publicity.

"But most importantly, I'm a father who cares deeply for my children and who would do anything to avoid hurting them in any way".

  • Arturo Norris