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SBD Global/September 24, 2013/Olympics

International Olympic Committee Ready To Raise Price Of Joining Its TOP Program

The IOC "plans to increase the price of sponsoring The Olympic Partner program, ending a decade-long period where official Olympic sponsorships averaged $25 million a year," according to Tripp Mickle of the SPORTSBUSINESS JOURNAL. IOC TV and Marketing Services Managing Dir Timo Lumme said that the price increases "would kick in for the 2022 and 2024 Olympics." Lumme said, "Pricing of TOP has to reflect market conditions. Once we start getting into the sales cycle post-2020, there will certainly be a price revision." The plan to increase pricing "comes as the IOC completes its third review of TOP." The program "has become one of the pre-eminent global sponsorship packages in sports," raising more than $3B since its inception and increasing in value by nearly 50% in the last decade, from $663M for the '01-04 quadrennium to $1B for the '13-16 quadrennium. However, the price TOP sponsors pay, which is pegged at $100M a quadrennium in just rights fees, "has been scrutinized in recent years" as the value of local organizing committee sponsorships for the Beijing, London, Sochi and Rio Games "have soared." Lumme said that the rising prices that local organizing committee sponsors pay "is one of the reasons the IOC is looking at its pricing of TOP." Lumme "did not say how much the IOC would increase the fee." Ultimately, that "will be a decision made by the organization’s new president, Thomas Bach." 21 Marketing founder Rob Prazmark, who helped create TOP in the '80s and was hired by the IOC to evaluate the program in '09, believes that "the IOC could charge TOP sponsors" $200M per quadrennium -- "double the current fee." Prazmark said, "The cost of TOP is a bargain for these global partners compared to if you had to go out and buy these rights individually" (SPORTSBUSINESS JOURNAL, 9/23 issue).
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