SBJ/June 4 - 10, 2001/No Topic Name

Kodak in NBC’s picture for Olympic coverage

Eastman Kodak, an International Olympic Committee TOP sponsor, has signed a deal with NBC to buy advertising time on the network's coverage of the 2002 Winter Olympics in Salt Lake City.

The network also has struck a major Salt Lake City Games ad deal with an undisclosed pharmaceutical company, industry sources said. Together, the two deals are worth about $50 million, according to the sources.

Lisa Kowitt, media director at Eastman Kodak Co., would not divulge the dollar value of Kodak's Olympics ad buy. Neither would NBC.

Under terms of its agreement with NBC, Kodak has secured category exclusivity on the network's broadcasts of the Salt Lake City Games, meaning it will be the only company in the imaging category advertising on the telecasts. The 2002 Winter Games are set for Feb. 8-24.

"The Olympics are truly one of the [few] global events that offer a marketer mass reach," Kowitt said. "People are so passionate about the Games that it's something we want to be a part of. ... It's something that we have had a long-term association with and will continue to have a long-term association with."

Kodak has been an Olympic sponsor since 1896 and a TOP sponsor since 1988.

Kodak has not yet decided what the content of its Olympic Games ads will be, nor has the company determined whether it will use the broadcasts as a platform to introduce new products. "We're in strategy sessions right now for 2002," Kowitt said, adding that the mass appeal of the Games provides an ideal environment in which to market new brands.

The fact that the 2002 Games are U.S.-based is a bonus for U.S. marketers, Kowitt said. "The fact that viewers will be able to see the Games live, that means a lot," she said.

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