Conservative investment fund gives Target the boot amid Pride collection backlash

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Conservative investment fund gives Target the boot amid Pride collection backlash

A conservative investment fund has sold its shares in Target and given the retailer a 'refuse to buy' label after a major backlash to its controversia

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A conservative investment fund has sold its shares in Target and given the retailer a ‘refuse to buy’ label after a major backlash to its controversial Pride collection.

The American Conservative Values ETF (ACVF), which pitches itself to ‘ideologically Conservative investors’, announced it would divest in Target Corp. over its ‘increasing pandering to the Woke LGBT agenda’.

The ACVF added Target to a list of boycotted companies which also includes Apple, Walmart, Starbucks, Nike and Netflix.

Target’s value has plunged by $9 billion after an angry backlash to its 2023 Pride collection, which includes ‘tuck friendly’ women’s swimwear. The company has pulled the products from some of its stores.

ACVF founder and CEO William Flaig said: ‘Not only weren’t they smart enough to stay apolitical, they picked the wrong side.’

The American Conservative Values Fund has sold its holdings in Target and put a 'refuse to buy' label on the company. The retailer has lost $9billion in value after a backlash to its Pride collection

The American Conservative Values Fund has sold its holdings in Target and put a 'refuse to buy' label on the company. The retailer has lost $9billion in value after a backlash to its Pride collection

The American Conservative Values Fund has sold its holdings in Target and put a ‘refuse to buy’ label on the company. The retailer has lost $9billion in value after a backlash to its Pride collection

The Pride collection includes 'tuck friendly' women's swimwear. The ACVF said Target's 'pandering to the Woke LGBT agenda has backfired'

The Pride collection includes 'tuck friendly' women's swimwear. The ACVF said Target's 'pandering to the Woke LGBT agenda has backfired'

The Pride collection includes ‘tuck friendly’ women’s swimwear. The ACVF said Target’s ‘pandering to the Woke LGBT agenda has backfired’

Target's share price has dipped ten percent in a month over the Pride collection controversy

Target's share price has dipped ten percent in a month over the Pride collection controversy

Target’s share price has dipped ten percent in a month over the Pride collection controversy

American Conservative Values Fund boycott list

Some of the other companies the fund refuses to invest in include:

  • Apple 
  • Amazon
  • Disney
  • Alphabet (Google’s owner)
  • Netflix
  • Nike
  • New York Times
  • Starbucks
  • Walmart
  • Pfizer
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Flaig added: ‘Hopefully the examples of Target and Bud Light reinforce the need for liberal corporate managers to focus on maximizing shareholder returns and stop playing politics.’

The criticism of Target comes amid the ongoing crisis at Bud Light over its partnership with trans influencer Dylan Mulvaney. Anheuser-Busch, which owns the beer brand, has lost $15.7 billion in value over the tie-up.

The ACVF’s semi-annual report published in January showed it held 717 shares in Target. The shares would be worth $100,917 at today’s price.

The report listed the combined value of the fund’s investments at nearly $38 million.

Other firms boycotted by the fund include Pfizer, Disney and the New York Times.

A statement issued by the fund on Thursday said: ‘Target Corp.’s ever increasing pandering to the Woke LGBT agenda has backfired and its management team’s inept response to a crisis of their own making has significantly damaged their brand across the political spectrum. We believe their stocks’ long-term performance will suffer because of it.

‘Their actions have also removed any doubt about the company’s hostility to conservative values.’

Tom Carter, the fund’s co-founder, added: ‘Target has shown their true colors.

ACVF founder and CEO William Flaig said: 'Not only weren't they smart enough to stay apolitical, they picked the wrong side'

ACVF founder and CEO William Flaig said: 'Not only weren't they smart enough to stay apolitical, they picked the wrong side'

ACVF founder and CEO William Flaig said: ‘Not only weren’t they smart enough to stay apolitical, they picked the wrong side’

‘We have been keeping an eye on Target’s behavior for some time. Although we have historically perceived Target as trending towards ‘The Woke’ liberal agenda, we felt their behavior wasn’t the worst of the worst among general merchandising companies.’

Target said earlier this week it had pulled some of the items that have ‘been at the center of the most confrontational behavior.’

‘Since introducing this year’s collection, we’ve experienced threats impacting our team members’ sense of safety and wellbeing while at work,’ Target said in a statement.

‘Given these volatile circumstances, we are making adjustments to our plans, including removing items that have been at the center of the most significant confrontational behavior,’ crisis communications manager Kayla Castaneda said.

North Face's Summer of Pride ad has also drawn ire from conservative consumers

North Face's Summer of Pride ad has also drawn ire from conservative consumers

North Face's Summer of Pride ad has also drawn ire from conservative consumers

North Face's Summer of Pride ad has also drawn ire from conservative consumers

The controversy at Target comes amid conservative anger at other brands who’ve launched Pride campaigns. North Face’s Summer of Pride included drag act Pattie Gonia

The company has also got a partnership with K-12 education group GLSEN, which pressures school boards to allow children to secretly transition without their parents’ consent and make sexually explicit books available in classrooms. 

It also provides instructions for teachers on how they can alter classes such as math and science to be ‘more inclusive of trans and non-binary identities’, including using ‘they/ them’ pronouns in lesson plans, reports Fox News

The controversies at Target and Bud Light follow conservative anger at Nike, Adidas and North Face over similar campaigns.

Nike recruited Mulvaney to promote its women’s sportswear, including sports bras, while Adidas used a biological male to promote a women’s swimwear collection that was released as part of its Pride campaign.

Earlier this week, North Face released a ‘Summer of Pride’ ad that features drag queen ‘Pattie Gonia’ telling consumers to ‘come out… in nature with us!’ and declaring themselves a ‘real life homosexual!’

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