VaynerMedia CEO 'stunned and angry' about 'attractive women only' Cannes party invitation

VaynerMedia CEO Gary Vaynerchuk has said he is "stunned and angry" about an invitation to an event at Cannes co-hosted by the agency, that said only "attractive" women and models could attend, blaming it on a third party.

Earlier today, advertising consultant Cindy Gallop tweeted an image of an invitation to the 'Wednesday Party' at Cannes for VaynerMedia in partnership with men's title Thrillist, set to take place tonight.

It said the event was for "attractive females and models only".

The invitation asked for "recent untouched photos" or Instagram/Facebook links from female guests who wanted to attend. "Once we have reviewed we will send you specific entry details," it continued.

The post was met with an angry response on social media:

In a series of tweets, Vaynerchuk initially said he did not know about the incident, and later attributed it to an external "third party production company".

Vaynerchuk has been been commended for his swift and sincere response - including by Gallop.

A VaynerMedia spokeswoman told PRWeek: "As Gary's Tweets illustrate, we at VaynerMedia were caught off guard and horrified to learn Wednesday morning that a production company hired to help with our Cannes event hired another company, which hired a promoter that - without our knowledge - put out the offensive email.

"As you can imagine, we at VaynerMedia are gut-wrenched that this happened, since it is the opposite of who we are and how we operate. 
"We're actively working to get all of the details on how this occured to ensure we prevent it from ever happening again."

In a statement, a Thrillist spokesperson said: "A third party promotions company sent this email without us knowing. We apologise to anyone who was spammed with this but it didn't come from Thrillist or Vayner. The guest list for the party has been closed for some time and will not include anyone who replies to that email."

This article was updated on Thursday morning with a comment from VaynerMedia.

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