Advertisers Drop Bill O'Reilly's Show Due To A Sexual Harassment Scandal

Photo: Richard Drew/AP/REX/Shutterstock.
Update: More than 35 advertisers have dropped Bill O'Reilly's show following the allegations of sexual harassment and improper conduct against him, Forbes reports. Some of the companies that are pulling their ads from The O'Reilly Factor include Bayer, Esurance, Subaru, H&R Block, and Jenny Craig.
"We value our partners and are working with them to address their current concerns about The O'Reilly Factor," Paul Rittenberg, Fox News' EVP of advertising sales, told Forbes. "At this time, the ad buys of those clients have been re-expressed into other FNC programs."
Earlier on Wednesday, President Trump spoke in defense of the TV host, whom he considers a friend. POTUS said he didn't "think Bill did anything wrong."
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This story was originally published on April 4, 2017.
At least 11 advertisers have pulled out from Fox News' The O'Reilly Factor, due to a sexual harassment scandal surrounding host Bill O'Reilly, NBC News reported.
On Saturday, The New York Times published an explosive report detailing how five women accused O’Reilly of sexual harassment or inappropriate conduct and ended up receiving settlements that add up to about $13 million. As a result, companies such as Mercedes-Benz and Hyundai yanked out their ads on Monday night. Donna Boland, a Mercedes-Benz spokeswoman, called the sexual harassment accusations "disturbing" in a statement to CNN, who first reported the company's decision.
“The allegations are disturbing and, given the importance of women in every aspect of our business, we don’t feel this is a good environment in which to advertise our products right now,” she said.
According to NBC News, in the next 24 hours, the automakers' decision was followed by several other companies: BMW, Mitsubishi, GlaxoSmithKline, Sanofi Consumer Care, Allstate, T. Rowe Price, Untuckit, Constant Contact, and Ainsworth Pet Nutrition.
"Inclusivity and support for women are important Allstate values. We are concerned about the issues surrounding the program and we have suspended our advertising," Allstate Insurance Company spokesman Justin Herndon told NBC News on Tuesday.
It's unclear how much financial damage The O'Reilly Factor, which is the most popular show on cable television, and Fox News will undergo as a consequence of the scandal.
According to The New York Times, advocacy groups such as Color of Change have a campaign targeting the show's advertisers.
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“Their money and support is keeping him on the air,” Rashad Robinson, executive director of the organization, told the Times. “It is rewarding his actions. It is rewarding the damage he has done to people in their lives and their careers.”
O'Reilly has denied he did anything wrong. After the Times' investigation was published, the host responded with a statement posted on his website.
"Just like other prominent and controversial people, I'm vulnerable to lawsuits from individuals who want me to pay them to avoid negative publicity," he wrote. "In my more than 20 years at Fox News Channel, no one has ever filed a complaint about me with the Human Resources Department, even on the anonymous hotline."
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