In what may seem like an obvious decision, the Czech National Bank (CNB) has declared placing ads on banknotes “unlawful.”
The statement stems from what was supposed to be a one-off gift of sorts from a Czech company called Vedici to its employees. As a unique way of congratulating its employees upon the completion of a project, Vedici paid them in cash – each banknote containing the company logo.
“We wanted to make their first salary something they would never forget,” says Martin Vilimek, one of Vedici’s owners.
The logo was not embedded in the banknote in any way; rather it simply took the form of a sticker placed on each bill.
Before embarking on the mission, however,Vedici sought the permission of CNB to make sure their plan was both legit and legal.
Permission was granted in the form of a letter with the assumption that the event was to transpire only once and that, once paid, the employees would promptly remove the stickers from the banknotes.
Given the success of the stickers, however, Vedici is now offering the service on their website calling it “a unique way to promote your company” and is using the letter from the CNB as justification.
Marek Petruš, a spokesman for the CNB, says Vedici is violating not only its initial agreement, but also existing Czech laws.
“[The company] was arguing that the sticker would be removed, which would mean that according to the letter from the CNB, no law would be broken,” said Petruš. “This letter from the CNB was misused by the company. The CNB has a strong and clear position, which is that it is not possible to use Czech banknotes for advertisements.”
Vedici says if the CNB tries to thwart their new venture, they will seek advice from their lawyers.