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Maharis Azman - Press Statement 13 April 2017

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This press statement is being released to address Maharis Azman’s position in relation to the controversy involving Mutha Puaka and TBWA Kuala Lumpur (“TBWA KL”).

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Maharis Azman - Press Statement 13 April 2017

  1. 1. PRESS STATEMENT DEFAMATION STATEMENT IN THE ARTICLE ‘CHANGING OF THE GUARD AT TBWA KL CREATIVE LEADERSHIP’ DATED 29 MARCH 2017 AGAINST MR. MAHARIS AZMAN This press statement is being released to address Maharis Azman’s position in relation to the controversy involving Mutha Puaka and TBWA Kuala Lumpur (“TBWA KL”). As many are aware, there was a recent controversial issue and legal row between TEALIVE and MUTHA PUAKA regarding the use of Mutha Puaka’s slogan by Tealive. Mutha Puaka, a local custom motorcycle lifestyle brand has claimed that TEALIVE, a Malaysian-owned bubble tea franchise used Mutha Puaka’s motto, ‘Never Bully The Weak, Never Fear The Strong’ in their recent advertisement and teacups as part of their rebranding exercise. It is also Mutha Puaka’s claim that they have been using the slogan on their branding and merchandise since 2014. It is without doubt that this issue and controversy has drawn public’s attention, particularly from those who are involved in the creative industry, including but not limited to, a well-known media and marketing website, Mumbrella Asia. On 29th March 2017, 8.30 am, Mumbrella Asia has published an article titled ‘CHANGING OF THE GUARD AT TBWA KL CREATIVE’. The article which contains defamatory statements against me has precisely indicated in their natural and ordinary meaning as follows:- a) It was claimed that I was directly involved in the legal row between TEALIVE and MUTHA PUAKA regarding the use of Mutha Puaka’s slogan by Tealive; b) It was claimed that I left TBWA KL because I was directly involved in the legal row between TEALIVE and MUTHA PUAKA regarding the use of Mutha Puaka’s slogan by Tealive; !1
  2. 2. c) It was claimed that I was the person in charge from TBWA KL with regards to the copied slogan and as well as the legal row between TEALIVE and MUTHA PUAKA regarding the use of Mutha Puaka’s slogan by Tealive; and d) It was also claimed that the announcement of the new appointment of Ng He Xiang as the Creative Group Head was intended to replace my position in TBWA KL due to the legal row between TEALIVE and MUTHA PUAKA regarding the use of Mutha Puaka’s slogan by Tealive. All these defamatory statements have tarnished my reputation in the media and creative industry. My actual reason for departing from TBWA KL is due to an opportunity which I have received from a different agency. I strongly believe that it serves no purpose to have my name in the article published by Mumbrella Asia. It is my understanding that their original purpose of publishing the said article was to announce the new appointment of the Creative Group Head. Therefore, my name should never have been in the said article. Further, Mumbrella Asia only made amendment to the current and existing article by including the statement "Azman himself was not involved with the Tealive account", after I had contacted them for further clarification. From observation, I have found that the article has been shared and circulated all over the internet prior to the amended article being re-published on Mumbrella Asia’s website. All the falsehood and untruths contained in the article has seriously defamed me and my reputation in the creative industry. By releasing this press statement, I hope that my name will no longer be related to this controversy as I am not involved and was never involved with the legal row between TEALIVE and MUTHA PUAKA regarding the use of Mutha Puaka’s slogan by Tealive. !2

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