The “curse” of Jackie Chan may have struck again, after the demise of well-known gym chain California Fitness, which once used Chan as a brand ambassador.
The parent company of the fitness centre chain is now facing a winding up order sought by one of its former board members and its branches have suspended operations. It may also face legal action from landlords for unpaid rent.
Chan was appointed brand ambassador between 2005 and 2012. In that time, four California Fitness branches were named “California Fitness – Jackie Chan Sport Clubs in Asia.”
The gym chain announced that its branches would temporarily suspend operation until further notice after closing on Monday due to a freeze on its operating capital.
Jackie Chan has been associated with a number of brands which fell upon bad luck, including BaWang, a herbal shampoo, which successfully sued Next Magazine for HK$3m in compensation after the publication claimed that its product contained a carcinogen.
Others include Fen Huang Cola, which ultimately closed in 2001 after falling sales.
The Volkswagen Caddy also suffered from poor sales despite an action-packed ad campaign with the star.
Ai-duo VCD electronics was plagued by lawsuits before its demise and its boss was sent to jail.
In 2011, Beijing authorities found golden staph bacteria in products from food company Synear, which used Chan to endorse its frozen dumplings.
The news led to shops pulling the product from shelves and caused a sharp fall in sales.