International cosmetic brand Lancôme has asked shops at Po Hing Fong, Sheung Wan, to return collaboration deposits after they controversially cancelled a concert in the area, Apple Daily has reported. The event scheduled for Sunday, which was to feature pro-democracy Canto-pop singer Denise Ho Wan-see, was axed in  to “safety reasons” on June 5.

Prior to the controversial cancellation, state-backed Global Times linked Ho with Hong Kong and Tibetan independence movements on Weibo. The post led to netizens in the mainland calling for a boycott of the French brand. After the concert was scrapped, Lancôme faced protests and boycotts in Hong Kong.

Po Hing Fong
Po Hing Fong in Sheung Wan. Photo: Wikicommons.

The manager of La Glaise Pottery – surnamed Chan – told the newspaper that Lancôme had invited shops to participate in the event, asking them to place a sticker associated with the brand on shop windows. It paid a deposit for the collaboration prior to the concert, and Chan said she had also ordered 30 cups for a workshop related to the event.

She said that Lancôme called the shop to request a refund of the deposit but she refused because she found it unreasonable.

Alice, store owner of coffee shop 3rd Space also said she had already ordered a lot of food.

denise ho
Denise Ho. File Photo: Wikicommons.

Pro-democracy Canto-pop singer Denise Ho Wan-see announced on Wednesday that she will hold a concert at the same location and on the same day.

In her announcement, Ho said that the concert “will be very ‘safe’: without politics, slogans, banners, no catchphrases, organisations, nor big companies” and asked Hongkongers to “use [their] own hands to open a path for themselves.”

chantal yuen

Chantal Yuen

Chantal Yuen is a Hong Kong journalist interested in issues dealing with religion and immigration. She majored in German and minored in Middle Eastern studies at Princeton University.