Anheuser-Busch CEO breaks silence and apologizes after controversy over hiring trans influencer Dylan Mulvaney

Since the marketing campaign came out, the company has lost about $5 billion of its market value.

This Friday, beer producer Anheuser-Busch apologized after sparking controversy over a marketing campaign that featured Bud Light with transgender influencer Dylan Mulvaney.

The company's chief executive officer, Brendan Whitworth, said in a press release that the intention was not to spark an argument that would divide people.

"We are in the business of bringing people together over a beer," he said after two weeks of silence. Whitworth added that he spends a lot of time traveling around the country listening and learning from customers and promised to continue working on behalf of the brand. However, he stopped short of specifically addressing Mulvaney, the reports of boycotts against the company or the loss of sales.

The fall of its shares

Since April 1, when Bud Light launched its campaign with the transgender influencer, the beer company's value has dropped more than $5 billion, representing about 4%.

Investment experts and analysts said that, although it was unlikely that Anheuser-Busch would go under because of this, the Bud Light brand could suffer significant consequences. "I simply don’t understand why they hired the person who was doing the marketing. I mean, if your target customer is Kid Rock, and then all of a sudden you decide to go to RuPaul, that just doesn’t make any sense at all," opined Ted Jenkin, CEO of Oxygen Financial.

Boycott against Nike

Recently Dylan Mulvaney's participation in a Nike campaign also sparked an outcry against the sportswear brand. Olympic swimmer Sharron Davies was the one who decided to suggest a boycott against the brand, after Nike partnered with the transgender influencer to promote its range of women's clothing that included a sports bra.

"The ad feels like a parody of what women are. In the past it was always seen as an insult to say, 'run like a girl' and here we've got someone behaving in a way that's very un-sporty and very unathletic," she said.