NEW YORK (CNN/Money) -
PepsiCo has bowed to public decorum and, citing the recent tsunamis in South Asia, put on hold a splashy new advertising campaign featuring giant waves.
A spokesman for PepsiCo International, a unit of PepsiCo (up $0.31 to $51.88, Research) that sells snacks and beverages outside of North America, confirmed Wednesday that the company will not be airing anytime soon a new television ad featuring soccer star David Beckham and several other athletes standing on a beach with a massive wave crashing in the background.
The new ad was supposed to be unveiled at a promotional event Jan. 17 in Madrid. Beckham, who is said to be hugely popular in Asia, plays for Spanish soccer team Real Madrid.
"In light of the tragedy in South Asia, we elected to put on hold a surf-themed soccer advertising campaign," said PepsiCo International spokesman Dick Detwiler. The campaign was set to run in Europe, Asia and other countries outside of the U.S. and Canada.
But the Dec. 26 earthquake in southeastern Asia and the tsunamis that followed prompted PepsiCo International to suspend the ads. The official death toll from the disaster now tops more than 155,000 people, including thousands of European vacationers.
Detwiler declined to say if, or when, the ad campaign would run or how much money the company budgeted for it. The ads were created by BBDO, Pepsi's primary ad agency and a unit of Omnicom Group (Research).
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Separately, PepsiCo International and the PepsiCo Foundation plan to donate $1 million toward tsunami relief and recovery efforts. The company is also donating bottled water sold under the Aquafina name and other PepsiCo products.
Other U.S. companies that have announced tsunami-related donations include Starbucks, Johnson & Johnson, Altria Group, Coca-Cola, Pfizer and Northwest Airlines.