12 January 2021, Budapest – The Hungarian Competition Authority (GVH) has initiated a competition supervision proceeding against the distributors of the BrightWhite home teeth whitening system due to the fact that their advertising practices may mislead consumers for multiple reasons.
The distributors of the BrightWhite home teeth whitening product line, two Hungarian and one Slovakian undertakings, were promoting the product via influencers with varying numbers of followers among other methods, thus the advertisements were able to reach a wide scope of consumers. However, the Facebook and Instagram advertisements failed to specify the commercial relationship between the influencers recommending the product and the undertakings in many cases. In addition, the records of the National Center for Public Health show the product to have been banned from the market; therefore, the GVH suspects that the advertisements are creating a false impression about the legality of distributing the product.
Furthermore, the advertisements allegedly create the impression that the product is recommended by a healthcare organisation. The advertisements are also suspected to contain unsupported statements about the ingredients of the product, for example its peroxide content, natural origin, the quick and spectacular results expected from its use, its health effects, and market-leading status. The GVH alleges that the undertakings are unilaterally filtering out negative consumer reviews on the website of the product as well, only allowing positive feedback to be displayed.
The initiation of the competition supervision proceeding does not mean that the undertakings have in fact committed the infringement. The proceeding is aimed at clarifying the facts and thereby proving the alleged infringement. The time limit for the completion of the proceeding is three months which, where justified, may be extended on two occasions by a maximum of two months each.
The official registration number of the case is: VJ/45/2020.
GVH Press Office