Naomi Osaka’s new media company with LeBron James mocked the ‘vulgar’ name

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Four-time tennis champion Naomi Osaka has been hit with backlash for inadvertently — or unknowingly — the offensive name of her new media company, Hana Kuma, depending on who you ask.

The Japanese-born sports star told the New York Times on Tuesday that prevent and It means “bear flower” in Japanese – but Twitter users soon noticed that it has a more explicit meaning in Swahili, where it translates to “woman without a vagina.”

Controversy over the translation loss is beginning to surface on Twitter in several African countries, with dozens of users urging Osaka, 24, to change the name of the company, which she founded in partnership with NBA legend LeBron James, 37.

“Naomi Osaka partnered with LeBron James to found a media company called Hana Kuma. Well, that name “Hana Kuma” means something different in Swahili. I wouldn’t say that,” Ugandan journalist Daniel Kibet tweeted.

“Have they done global research on the meaning of the name?” asked another. She should have been wise [that] It has a vulgar meaning in Swahili spoken by many people.”

Osaka excitedly announced its new business earlier this week.  The company will produce TV shows, documentaries, and branded content.
The tennis star excitedly announced her new business earlier this week. The company will produce TV shows, documentaries, and branded content.
AFP via Getty Images

a The third explosion: “Amazing lack of research. Lots of money but this brand will not fly in Africa. Let it remain in America and Japan. It is offensive. Do you even have an idea of ​​what it means? Get rid of your ego and change the name. May God forgive your ignorance.”

Another also urged Osaka to consider changing the name, saying: “If you keep the name #hanakuma, the name will override the news and stories you want to share. The brand name is already news! I’m suggesting a change and also being a little respectful of global culture. It’s not overthinking here, it protects the brand!”

Others have always described the name as “Unethical” And the “sincere”.

The number of Swahili speakers is estimated to be around 200 million worldwide, with the majority of speakers concentrated in East Africa. Osaka has not yet responded to the controversy but it was Share a mysterious tweet on Wednesday nightwriting: “Prayers to all thinkers. We are going through it.”

Osaka told The Times that she hopes Hana Kuma will become a leading Hollywood media company producing TV shows, documentaries and branded content. The company was founded in partnership with SpringHill – a marketing firm co-founded by James.

Osaka and James photographed together in 2019. The couple - who collaborated on the new project - are some of the most influential athletes in the world.
Osaka and James photographed together in 2019. The couple – who collaborated on the new project – are some of the most influential athletes in the world.
NBAE via Getty Images

Osaka – who was born to a Japanese mother and Haitian father – said the company will focus on telling diverse stories.

“What excites me is my ability to inspire people and tell new stories, especially the ones I wanted to see as a child,” she stated. “I’ve always wanted to see someone kind of like me.”

The tennis ace is currently the highest-paid female athlete in the world, earning $57 million last year.

A large portion of Osaka’s earnings come from endorsement deals, as the superstar has struck lucrative partnerships with brands such as Nike and Louis Vuitton.

Earlier this week, the former world number one announced that she will be withdrawing from the upcoming Wimbledon Championships due to an Achilles tendon injury.

Osaka - who was born to a Japanese mother and a Haitian father - says the company will focus on diverse storytelling.
Osaka – who was born to a Japanese mother and Haitian father – said the company will focus on telling diverse stories.
Ed Jones/AFP via Getty Images

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