Danish HiFi companies including B&O, Jamo and Media Centre company, KISS, are expecting a massive backlash from Muslims around the world following the publication of contentious drawings of Islam’s Prophet, Muhammad, in a Danish newspaper.
Denmark’s main industry organisation, fearing a loss of business in the Muslim world, sought to distance itself from a newspaper that published the offending cartoons.
A B&O executive has admitted that the ban on Danish products will have an impact on the company both in the Middle East and in Muslim Countries such as Indonesia, and Malaysia. B&O has stores in Bahrain, Saudi Arabia, Quatar, Omar, and Lebanon.
Hans Skov Christensen, head of the Danish Trade Organisation said Danish companies such as B&O, Kiss and Jamo along with many others in the HiFi market faced repercussions from customers in the Middle East, including product boycotts, dropped orders, and canceled business meetings. The confederation claims the Middle East accounts for annual sales of at least $816 million for Danish companies.
Danish-based Arla Foods, Europe’s largest dairy group, said it had noted sales dropping in Saudi Arabia because of protests over the drawings.
“We are sorry if Muslims have been offended in their faith. It was not the intention,” Carsten Juste, Jyllands-Posten‘s editor in chief, told The Associated Press. “What we did, we did within the constitution, the Danish penal code and international conventions.” The paper says it invited illustrators to depict the prophet to challenge what it perceived was a tendency of self-censorship among artists dealing with issues related to Islam.
One drawing showed Muhammad wearing a turban shaped as a bomb; another portrayed him with a bushy gray beard and holding a sword; and a third pictured a middle-aged prophet standing in the desert with a walking stick in front of a donkey.
Denmark’s government has repeatedly rejected calls to intervene in the matter, saying the government has no say over media.