• Sweden's news in English
 
app_header_v3

Björn Borg drops undies in North Korea

The Local · 19 Nov 2013, 16:47

Published: 19 Nov 2013 16:47 GMT+01:00

The focal point of Björn Borg’s autumn campaign ‘Björn Borg says JA! to Weapons of Mass Seducton’ was The Drop, a scheme to “love bomb” underwear onto the city voted most in need of some love and seduction.

"We couldn’t even imagine a place like North Korea would win,” Lina Söderqvist, marketing director at Björn Borg, told The Local. "We had planned how we would pursue an airdrop, and we could have done it almost anywhere in the world – except North Korea."

Just over a week into the campaign, The Drop's website experienced a traffic surge from South Korea. The North Korean capital sky-rocketed in the poll, gaining more than 25,000 votes overnight. By the poll’s end on October 31st, more than 53,000 people around the world had taken part in the vote, and 60 percent went to Pyongyang.

"It was impossible to do an airdrop in North Korea," Söderqvist told The Local. "Someone would get hurt. But we had promised to deliver our underwear to the winner, and the world voted for North Korea. And we thought, who are we to say no? We’ve been given this mission, by the world. So let’s do it."

The solution? Sending in an undercover journalist. Björn Borg hired a journalist, whose name is withheld for security reasons, to give out the underwear by hand in Pyongyang.

“We also sent a package of underwear to the embassy, but it didn’t arrive and we don’t know why,” Söderqvist said, adding that the seductive undies might have been seized by the state.

The Swedish infiltrator was only allowed to bring one suitcase, which he stuffed with 150 pairs of bright pink camo-print underwear. He went to Pyongyang on a tourist visa and was accompanied at all times by two North Korean “guides”, to whom he also gave underwear.

“Conditions for performing this task are… not ideal,” the journalist wrote on his anonymous blog documenting the experience. “The only time when I was left alone today was for one minute down in the Pyongyang Metro, but I felt that taking out pink underwear and taking photos down there could have serious consequences, so I decided not to do it.”

While he did manage to give out all of the underwear from his suitcase, not a single recipient dared to get their picture taken with the underwear, the journalist reported on the blog. In a desperate attempt to spread more seduction he resorted to dropping underwear in the hotel corridor – and even throwing it out the window of his room on the 41st floor.

“I wish I could be there when someone finds the gifts I put out on the street,” he signed off on his blog. “In any case, I’m sure the recipients of our gifts will have use for them, and that their new Weapons of Mass Seduction will do more good than the thousands of actual weapons in circulation here.”

In the meantime, Björn Borg’s website keeps getting hit by South Korean visitors, and the company has decided to give back the love. “We’re planning on translating some of our site into South Korean,” Söderqvist told The Local. “We’re not planning on doing distribution there in the near future, but who knows? It may come.”

Story continues below…

After South Korea, the country with the most votes for needing more love and seduction was Sweden, with Chalmers University of Technology in Gothenburg in second place, and the Swedish Left Party in third.

Solveig Rundquist

Follow Solveig on Twitter

The Local (news@thelocal.se)

Your comments about this article

Today's headlines
Sweden's Spotify hits 39 million subscribers
Spotify is gaining listeners. Photo: Erik Mårtensson/TT

Spotify has grown by nine million paying subscribers in five months, fending off competition from rivals.

Prosecutor wants asylum stabber convicted of murder
Prosecutor Linda Wiking. Photo: Adam Ihse/TT

The man was convicted of aggravated manslaughter for stabbing a worker to death at a home for young refugees in Sweden.

Old Swedish cash worth billions still in circulation
Old Swedish money. Photo: Micke Larsson/TT

Hand in your invalid Swedish bills to the bank by the end of the month.

Sweden moves to battle high rate of drug deaths
Sweden has among Europe's highest drug-induced mortality rates. Photo: Stian Lysberg Solum/NTB/TT

Sweden has among the highest number of drug-related deaths in the EU despite its zero-tolerance policy. The government wants to find out why.

Human skeleton found on abandoned farm in Sweden
Police at the farm in Hörby. Photo: Johan Nilsson/TT

Police suspect human remains found in a well on an abandoned farm in rural Sweden belonged to a man who was murdered.

The Local List
You'll never really be Swedish without trying this weird food
Kebab pizza. It exists. Photo: Maja Suslin/TT

The Local's intern Saina Behnejad on her love-hate relationship with Swedish cuisine.

Sweden's Stenson pulls out of Barclays with injured knee
Henrik Stenson at the Olympics this summer. Photo: AP Photo/Alastair Grant

Henrik Stenson's injury throws doubt on Europe's chances at next month's Ryder Cup.

The Local Recipes
How to make this delicious Swedish crayfish pasta
Swedish crayfish pasta. Photo: John Duxbury/Swedish Food

Combine the Swedish favourite of crayfish with pasta to impress with this simple yet tasty dish.

Drunken Christmas goat burner risks four years in jail
The Christmas goat looks at the fireworks and contemplates its future. Photo: Mats Åstrand/TT

His singed eyebrows were a dead giveaway.

Joe Biden: 'Sweden has shown great leadership'
Joe Biden, left, and Stefan Löfven. Photo: Anders Wiklund/TT

US Vice President Joe Biden praised Sweden for "punching way above its weight" in the global refugee crisis.

Sponsored Article
Malmö to host global skateboard championship
Travel
What are Sherpas doing on Sweden's highest mountain?
Sponsored Article
Life in Jordan: 'Undiscovered treasure'
Gallery
People-watching: August 24th
The Local Voices
'I want to be a businesswoman but I don’t care about money'
Blog updates

23 August

A Summer in Sweden (The Diplomatic Dispatch) »

"For our first year here in Sweden we decided to have all our holidays in Sweden.…" READ »

 

22 July

After the horror, carry on regardless (Globally Local) »

"This time last week, we were just digesting the horror of the Nice killings, in which…" READ »

 
 
 
Sponsored Article
The mystique of Asia - in the middle of Stockholm
National
Experts: Gothenburg grenade blast is 'part of a cycle of violence'
Sponsored Article
Why you should learn to trade (and just how easy it is)
Gallery
Property of the week: Karlsborg
National
Why Sweden could change its criticised detention laws
National
Watch this dog's reaction when she tries Swedish fermented herring
Sponsored Article
6 reasons expats use TransferWise to send money
Gallery
People-watching: August 19th-21st
Sponsored Article
'Sweden's Lauryn Hill' touches the country's musical soul
National
How to find student housing in Sweden
National
VIDEO: Swede films first Northern Lights of the season
Sponsored Article
6 simple travel hacks that will make your life easier
Gallery
People-watching: August 17th
Sponsored Article
Why expats choose international health insurance
Society
Swedish population nears ten million
The Local Voices
This Syrian artist found love in a Swedish library
Sponsored Article
Five easy ways to travel more often
National
Sex pigs halt traffic after laser attack on Pokémon teens. Only in Sweden.
Sponsored Article
Why you should attend an international job fair
Gallery
Property of the week: Hammarby Sjöstad, Stockholm
Sponsored Article
Five things Americans should know about voting abroad
Society
Drunk knight detained in Stockholm
National
Can you solve this Swede's strange Star Wars mystery?
Sponsored Article
Jordan: where history meets adventure
Gallery
People-watching: August 12th-14th
Sponsored Article
Life in Jordan: 'Undiscovered treasure'
National
Swedes cheer first snow of the season
Sponsored Article
Jordan Pass: your ticket to the experience of a lifetime
Gallery
People-watching: August 10th
Sponsored Article
Why Jordan is the ‘Different’ East
The Local Voices
Syrian presenter: Swedish media should make more shows in Arabic
Sponsored Article
6 simple travel hacks that will make your life easier
Travel
Watch the meteor shower in Sweden
Lifestyle
How to survive a crayfish party
The Local Voices
Gabriel mastered Swedish and got accepted onto a medicine degree in just 7 months
3,375
jobs available