Marketing Featured Southeast Asia

Who ‘stole’ SM MOA’s Globe? IKEA PH or Netflix PH?

Manila, Philippines – The Philippines was inundated with reports that the well-famed ‘Globe’ located at the SM Mall of Asia (MOA) has been ‘stolen’, to which the management has responded with a statement that it has been ‘working’ with authorities regarding the incident.

Adding to the saga fuel was a video uploaded by netizen Chester Allan Tangonan on Facebook, in which his dashboard attached to his motorcycle captured the ‘moment’ that the Globe had been taken away by a helicopter.

The MOA Globe has been a well-known landmark in Metro Manila that has greeted SM MOA customers since its opening in 2006. In 2009, the ‘Globe’ was equipped with LED lights, and therefore called ‘Globamaze’. The Globe is Asia’s first and only fully global video display installation.

SM MOA Globe
The SM MOA Globe. Photo Courtesy of Charles Gaisano/Flickr

The ‘accidental’ blame on IKEA Philippines

Netizens have speculated at first that the latest ‘stolen MOA Globe’ saga was a marketing stunt by the Philippine arm of multinational furniture giant IKEA. It should be noted that IKEA Philippines, known to be the largest IKEA store globally, is set to open in November 25 this year after delays.

As the ‘stolen MOA Globe’ saga continued, IKEA Philippines recently posted a statement across their social media channels that clarified that their local brand mascot, Tito Ball, was not to be blamed for the incident. They also added that while their mascot was last seen at the vicinity during November 11 this year, they ‘asked’ the public to await ‘investigation’ results.

It was Netflix’s ‘Red Notice’ stunt after all

Hours after the ‘incident’ was made public, Netflix Philippines announced across their social media platforms that the Globe is ‘back’, and it was all part of a marketing ploy to promote the platform’s newest film ‘Red Notice’.

The film follows the story of an FBI agent John Hartley, played by Dwayne Johnson, who reluctantly teams up with an international art thief Nolan Booth (played by Ryan Reynolds) to capture Sarah Black, played by Gal Gadot.

Industry insiders have estimated that the film has made US$1.25m to US$1.5m from 750 theaters in the United States before its streaming debut on 12 November.

So, who stole the ‘stunt’? Netizens react

Netizens were quick to assume in the first few hours of the ‘stolen MOA Globe’ incident that IKEA Philippines was the brand behind the stunt due to the nearing opening date of IKEA’s first-ever store in the country. Furthermore, netizens also joked that the Globe might be stolen, only to be replaced by Tito Ball, which takes the personification of a meatball, a known food staple served across IKEA franchises globally.

After the revelation of the marketing stunt by Netflix Philippines, netizens were disappointed with the execution, with many saying that the stunt lacked a ‘surprise element’, a huge contrast to Netflix Philippines’ widespread stunt for the Filipino occult series ‘Trese’, which ranged from ‘slashed’ billboards to taking over the facade of media conglomerate ABS-CBN.

Netizens were also quick to point out that IKEA Philippines got free publicity out of this ‘saga’, due to the lack of information prior to the true nature of the marketing stunt.

Apart from the brand stunts, the ‘incident’ made it to the top trending topics in Twitter Philippines. According to aggregate results from BrandMentions, the hashtag ‘#MOA_GLOBE’ has been shared 26.5k times, with a total reach of 209.5k across the platform.