Latest figures released over the weekend by the International Olympic Committee point to a major lift in the amount of sponsorship income being delivered by the TOP Top Olympic Partner Programme.
The figures for 2017 show a deficit for the 12 months of €80 million but that is to be expected in a Non Olympic Games yeare.
The underlying trend though indicates the financial power of the IOC.
Money attributed to sponsorship climed to €402 million from a figure of €335 million in 2016 and from only €115 million at the same stage of the four year Olympic cycle in 2013.
That level of growth in the willingness of major global brands to associate with the Olympic movement suggests strongly that the cut through of association to such major global events far outweighs the negative publicity that has surrounded the IOC in terms of governance and the actions of member states on anti-doping.
Part of the major uplift may be down to an accounting change which sees more of the cash element of sponsorship deals assigned earlier in the term of the contract but there has still been a major lift in the overall money that partners are wiling to spend.
The introduction to the IOC’s TOP programme states that “the Olympic Games are one of the most effective international marketing platforms in the world, reaching billions of people in over 200 countries and territories throughout the world.”
“Support from the business community is crucial to the staging of the Games and the operations of every organisation within the Olympic Movement.”
“Revenue generated by commercial partnerships accounts for more than 40% of Olympic revenues and partners provide vital technical services and product support to the whole of the Olympic Family.”
There are currently 13 members of the Programme. They are Coca-Cola, Alibaba Group, Atos, Bridgestone, Dow, General Electric, Intel, Omega, Panasonic, Procter and Gamble, Samsung, Toyota and Visa.
All are active at the Winter Games currently underway in Pyeongchang, doubtless recouping a serious instalment on the major investment they have made in the Olympic movement.
All in all the figures hint at the potential uplift which is there to be tapped into by the Olympic Council of Ireland with its new CEO now named and due to be in place by May of this year.
Toyota as one of the main partners of the Olympic and Paralympic Games on a global basis have already signed up to a major long-term deal supporting Paralympics Ireland at local level and perhaps there is more to be gained from a rebooted OCI as well.