GM MAKES IT OFFICIAL: SIGNS ON AS AUTO SPONSOR OF '96 GAMES
ACOG announced that GM would become the domestic car and
truck sponsor of the '96 Games. Terms were not disclosed, but
the cost was estimated at $10M. GM had previously negotiated an
agreement with NBC to be the exclusive car and truck advertising
on the network's '96 coverage for an estimated $50M. GM can use
the Olympic rings "in its advertising and on special editions of
cars and trucks sold by Chevrolet, Pontiac, Buick, Oldsmobile and
Cadillac." GMC Truck and Saturn will not participate in the
program. Philip Guarascio, GM's VP/Marketing & Advertising, said
the company "will orchestrate each division's promotions in a way
to maximize the outreach" (Greg Gardiner, DETROIT FREE PRESS,
3/10). GM may be "a bit tardy entering the Olympics arena,"
according to Bruce Horowitz of the USA TODAY. He notes that 26
Olympic sponsors have already begun their marketing efforts.
Horowitz cites industry execs who say GM will pay up to $20M for
the sponsorship rights (USA TODAY, 3/10). Multiple reports say
that GM will share the auto category with Mercedes-Benz, which
will be the '96 Games' official imported car.