BMW has terminated its ambassadorial deal with Nigerian-New Zealand martial artist, Israel Adesanya over his recent rape comment.
Adesanya was due to be unveiled as the new face of the BMW New Zealand on Monday, the same day as the launch of the new BMW M3 and M4 models.
However, the offensive comments he made earlier this week on social media -threatening to rape a fellow UFC fighter, Kevin Holland has made him lose out on the deal.
A BMW statement released to sports magazine, Herald, read: “Due to the comments made by an athlete online, we have reviewed our pending association with said athlete and we have decided not to push forward with a specific ambassador for the brand at this time in New Zealand.”
Adesanya is the current Ultimate Champion in the UFC middleweight and also the former challenger of the Glory Middleweight Championship competition of kick boxing.
Nicknamed Style Bender, Adesanya won 15 of his bouts by knockouts and lost one by the decision of the judges.
The Deputy Prime Minister and Sports Minister of New Zealand, Grant Robertson, was the first official to condemn Style Bender for his Instagram comment threatening to rape Kevin Holland, a colleague at UFC.
The cynical rape comments made by Adesanya was later described by him as a “fall-off of fight talk” between him and Armann, whom he once lost a professional fight to.
Style Bender in an Instagram post, admitted to his flop when he apologized for making the rape threat comment and stated that he has learnt his lessons on public engagement from it.
He concluded by stating that he was not intentional about the rape threat statement but was rather being sensational and unknowingly “crossed the line”.