Red Bull and Rip Curl have been accused of hijacking Mick Fanning's near-death encounter with a shark.

The companies' logos featured prominently in a media conference Fanning and fellow surfer Julian Wilson held after the shark attack.

Photo / Business Insider
Photo / Business Insider

Both sponsor the Surf League J-Bay Open competition, during which the attack occurred, and both contribute to the bank accounts of Fanning and Wilson, both of whom earn more than $2 million through corporate sponsorships.

Wilson, who swam to save Fanning from the shark, and Fanning himself held Red Bull cans and sipped from them during the half-hour-long interview.


Wilson wore a cap with the Red Bull logo and Fanning one with Rip Curl's front and centre. Behind them were two surf boards emblazoned with the companies' logos.

You could be forgiven they were doing an advert for the companies - and the point wasn't lost on social media: