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Swisse drops Fan Bingbing from advertising following Chinese star's disappearance

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By Danielle Long, Acting APAC Editor

September 18, 2018 | 3 min read

Australian vitamin brand Swisse has suspended using images of its brand ambassador Chinese actress Fan Bingbing following the actress’ disappearance.

Swisse Fan Bingbing

Vitamin brand Swisse is removing advertising featuring Chinese star Fan Bingbing

Fan Bingbing, who is China’s highest-paid actress and has appeared in the X-Men and Iron Man franchises, has not be seen or posted on social media in three months, according to media reports.

Reports suggest the actress’ disappearance may be linked to a government investigation into tax evasion in the film business, however, this has not been confirmed. Media reports have also suggested the star is suspected of participating in illegal lending and other forms of corruption.

It comes as China’s government increasingly cracks down on the high salaries and lavish lifestyle of China’s celebrities which it claims corrupts young people. China’s State Administration of Radio and Television states that lead actors cannot earn more than 70% of the total cost of an entire cast.

Swisse signed the actress as a brand ambassador for Greater China and Australia last September in a bid to accelerate its growth in the two core markets. The move paid off with the brand experiencing a surge in sales from young Chinese women.

However, the company has now dropped the star from its promotional materials and facing uncertainty about its important Singles Day activity.

"We have suspended using her image alongside our brand. As such we are unsure on her involvement in our Singles Day activity. We are continuing to monitor the situation and hope that it is resolved in the near future," a Swisse spokesperson told Fairfax Media.

Fan Bingbing has also appeared in advertising for Guerlain, Montblanc and De Beers, among a host of others.

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