Brody Longo trains on his Peloton exercise bike in Brick, New Jersey on April 16, 2021.
Michael Loccisano | Getty Images
The company posted a response to a plot in “Sex and the City,” on its Twitter account on Sunday sent shares in the company into a tailspin last week, piled on a recent sell-off. The stock is down about 75% since the start of the year, hitting a 52-week low of $ 37.67 on Friday.
(The next part of this story contains a spoiler for the first episode of “And just like that …”.)
In the widespread “Sex and the City” scene, one of the main characters in “And Just Like That …”, Mr. Big, died of a heart attack after attending a 45-minute peloton class.
In Peloton’s spoof commercial, Jess King – the Peloton instructor portrayed on the HBO show – sits down with Mr. Big, played by Sex and the City actor Chris Noth, after getting up from a fall and asks him if he would like to take another class on the bike.
“I feel great,” said Noth in Peloton’s video. “Shall we take another ride? Life is too short to not do it.”
Then, in a voice-over from actor and director Ryan Reynolds, it was said, “This is how the world has been reminded that regular cycling stimulates and improves your heart, lungs and circulation. … Cycling strengthens your heart muscles, lowers your resting heart rate and reduces the blood flow and fat values. Experienced.”
The whole thing came together in less than 48 hours and was filmed in New York City, according to a peloton spokesman.
Reynolds also shared the video online on Sunday in a tweet with the words: “Unspoiler alert.”
Peloton Chief Executive Officer John Foley also tweeted on Sunday, “He’s alive.”
The “Sex and the City” scene comes after Peloton cut out in the past few weeks his annual forecast and frozen attitude, amid declining demand for its products. Peloton faces increased competition from other home fitness companies as well as gym chains that are attracting back previous users.
Peloton was a big beneficiary of the pandemic as people got stuck at home looking for ways to maintain healthy habits. The stock also benefited, rising more than 440% in 2020.
However, investors now fear that future growth will be much harder to come by and that it will cost more.
Peloton has faced other issues over the past few months, including regulatory scrutiny. The enterprise announced a voluntary recall of its treadmills in May, after reports of one death and dozens of injuries. It also reduced the price of his original bike by hundreds of dollars, in the hope of reaching more people with a discount.
While Peloton said it coordinated with HBO in placing one of its bikes on “And Just Like That …”, the network said the network did not announce the plot in advance for “confidentiality reasons”.
An HBO spokesperson did not immediately respond to CNBC’s request for comment.
BMO Capital Markets analyst Simeon Siegel, who issued a note to clients last week saying the “Sex and the City” portrayal could indicate potential problems with the brand, said it was a wise move Hire Reynolds to help with a video response. (Reynolds previously snapped the actress in the infamous “Peloton Wife” commercial starring in an ad for his Aviation Gin brand.)
“One who doesn’t love Reynolds,” said Siegel. “It’s better to have Ryan on the Peloton than against.”
However, Siegel said he wondered how much the company spent to bring production together so quickly.
“In any case, it is worth understanding how much a Reynolds-Chris Noth deal costs,” he said.