JWT India has sacked its employees over a series of controversial advertisements, including one that features a cartoon of former Italian PM Silvio Berlusconi with a group of bound women in a car trunk.
The firm’s managing partner, Bobby Pawar, has been asked to leave, the BBC reported.
According to reports, the creative director of Blue Hive, a WPP unit dedicated to managing the Ford business, Vijay Simha Vellanki, has also been asked to resign from his post.
The posters were never used commercially but appeared on a website.
JWT, a unit of the world’s biggest advertising group WPP, said that the posters were “distasteful and contrary to standards” followed at the firm.
JWT said in a statement that they deeply regretted the publishing of posters, adding that after a thorough internal review, they took appropriate disciplinary action with those involved, which included the exit of employees.
One of the advertisements showed Berlusconi in the driver’s seat with three bound women in the boot and a slogan: “Leave your worries behind with Figo’s extra-large boot."
The controversial ad made Ford Motor Company’s Indian unit issuing an apology earlier this week.