ASA Adjudication on The London Mint Office Ltd
The London Mint Office Ltd
13–15 Bouverie Street
13 June 2012
Number of complaints:
A TV ad for a collection of Olympic themed ingots, viewed on 20 March 2012, included a voice-over which stated, "There now follows an announcement from the London Mint Office. Official licensee of London 2012. It will be a proud moment this year when London becomes the only city ever to have hosted the modern Olympic games three times. Now you can own a collection of three ingots to celebrate London's Olympic games. The three ingots feature the official Olympic games logos from 1908, 1948 and 2012. Limited to just 50,000 each ingot is fully layered with pure 24 carat gold. And the design includes the logo of the Olympic museum which incorporates the Olympic rings. The first in this collection celebrates the austerity games held is 1948 and it can be yours for just £9.95 plus £2.95 post and packing. No pre-payment is needed so call now on 0800 437 0007. Successful applicants will qualify to view the two further ingots celebrating the 1908 and 2012 London Olympic games." On-screen text stated "Layered with pure 24 carat gold".
The complainant challenged whether the ad was misleading because they understood that ingots were made from solid cast metal but believed that the product was only gold plated.
The London Mint Office Ltd (London Mint) stated that the voice-over and on-screen text clearly stated that the ingots were layered in pure 24 carat gold and that at no point was it stated or implied that the ingots were solid gold.
Clearcast said it shared London Mint's view and that although 'ingot' was metal cast into a shape, they believed the ad made clear that the gold was layered on top. They stated that the term "layered" was used in the graphic as well as the voice-over and that the ad adequately qualified that the product was a gold plated ingot and not a solid gold ingot.
The ASA noted the ad made repeated references to the product as an "ingot" and understood that this word was normally used to describe blocks made from solid metal which had been cast from a mould. However, we also noted the ad did not specifically refer to the product as a "gold ingot" and that the voice-over and on-screen text clearly stated that the ingots being offered were "fully layered with pure 24 carat gold" and considered that most viewers would therefore understand from the ad that the ingots were gold-plated and therefore not made from solid gold. We considered that the additional information in the ad made clear to viewers what they would receive if they ordered the product and therefore concluded that the ad was not misleading.
We investigated the ad under BCAP Code rules 3.1 and 3.2 (Misleading advertising) but did not find it in breach.
No further action required.