Fynn Kliemann reacts to Böhmermann’s ‘mask fraud’ research

Fynn Kliemann has made a name for himself as a Youtuber, influencer and entrepreneur. His mask business during the corona crisis was more than questionable. Jan Böhmermann discovered this in his latest episode of ZDF Magazin Royale. Now Kliemann is responding to the allegations.

Masks effectively protect us from the corona virus, and the demand increased accordingly from the start of the pandemic. Influencer and entrepreneur Fynn Kliemann probably knew that too. In the spring of 2020, together with his business partner Tom Illbruck, he announced on Instagram that he would convert his own textile production in Europe to the manufacture of masks.

“We have changed our production and now produce reusable mouth covers made fairly in Europe, in 100% polypropylene, to reduce the risk of infection,” the 34-year-old explains on Instagram. An update will be posted there a week later. In it, Kliemann says they are “one of the largest mask producers in Europe.” In Portugal, production has been increased to 40,000 masks per day. Agreements have also been reached with the Serbian Ministry of Economic Affairs and additional workers have been hired to produce masks.

Moreover, they would be sold at cost, as Kliemann explained to the Weser Kurier in April 2020. The crisis “is not about making money, but about helping as many people as possible who are in urgent need of ‘help,’ he reportedly said.

But mouth and nose protection does not have to be “just” and “from Europe”, as TV presenter and journalist Jan Böhmermann reported in his ZDF Magazin Royale program. On a specially created website, Böhmermann and his team of investigators refer to Kliemann’s activity as “mask fraud”. According to this, the entrepreneur would not have given any correct information about the place of production – and the information about the cost price is also questionable.

Masks from Bangladesh and Vietnam?

On the contrary, according to Böhmermann, Kliemann and his business partner Illbruck, managing director of Global Tactics, have had masks produced “on a large scale” in Bangladesh and Vietnam. Especially in Bangladesh, seamstresses often have to work in inhumane and unhealthy working conditions – for foreign companies.

According to its own statements, the ZDF Magazin Royale evaluated internal chats, voicemails, e-mails, delivery notes, order confirmations, photos, video recordings and call lists for its research. Kliemann was therefore personally involved in “important decisions and details concerning the production, delivery and sale of the fraudulent goods”. As a result, he is said to have personally initiated production in Asia, as the WhatsApp messages clearly show. Including a message from the textile manufacturer, which according to research produces exclusively in Asia: “In Bangladesh, I can now have 1,000,000 per week if the demand increases. This is where the story of helping the poor might fit better,” he says. Kliemann then accepts, as ZDF Royale magazine reports.

Kliemann responded to Böhmermann’s allegations in his own video, in which he posted a questionnaire from the research team. However, he left the ZDF Magazin Royale reporters’ question unanswered.

In his Instagram video from May 1, the influencer says he was exclusively a “customer” of Global Tactics with his online store Oderso until he took a 20% stake in the company in 2021. According to the research team, the managing director of Illbruck confirms this in his statement.

“Expected a profit in the millions”

Illbruck admits that masks have also been produced in Bangladesh “via a German business partner”. According to Böhmermann, when asked about the production conditions in Bangladesh, he refers to common industrial seals: “The German supplier presented us with a BSCI and Oekotex certification of its production facilities. […].”

ZDF Magazin Royale says it spoke to a manager at one of the factories in Bangladesh where Global Tactics had masks produced. He explains that the average monthly salary of his employees is $130. Although higher than the minimum wage in Bangladesh, it is only about half of the subsistence level.

Böhmermann’s team writes of the alleged cost price of the masks: “Research by ZDF Magazin Royale now suggests that Ilbruck and Kliemann had planned to make a multi-million profit from the masks. When asked, neither Kliemann nor Illbruck n wanted to respond to the real importance of this benefit.

Kliemann: “I exaggerated”

After the show aired on Friday, Kliemann spoke again. In a public statement, the YouTube star apologizes “to all people, organizations and institutions who are disappointed and shocked at first sight.” Kliemann also took a stand in an interview with Der Spiegel: “Bangladesh production was only for large customers. While I knew it, these masks were never sold through my website or released to the outside by me, “he says. The entrepreneur admits that he made money with the masks. He made a profit of around 415,000 euros before taxes. The statement of earning nothing from this business was ‘false.'”I overdid it and I’ll have to get used to it in the future,” Kliemann said.

Utopia advises: The global textile industry still relies mainly on Bangladesh and other Asian countries, where people often have to make clothes in poor working conditions and on a piece-by-piece basis. Although there are initiatives and programs to change this, there is a high risk that Western companies will support the prevailing conditions with their activities there in the absence of controls. Some also quite consciously take advantage of it. While politicians must follow suit with completely fair and sustainable supply chain laws, you can already do your part by drastically or completely reducing your consumption of fast fashion. Here you will find an overview of sustainable fashion: Fair Fashion: The most important brands, the best shops for fair fashion

** marked with a ** or orange underlined Some links to sources of supply are affiliate links: if you buy here, you are actively supporting Utopia.de, because we then receive a small part of the sales proceeds. More information.

Do you like this post?

Thank you for your vote!

Tags: Coronavirus Health & Society News

Leave a Comment