Disney TOP Sponsorship Could Be Part Of ESPN's Olympic TV Rights Bid
In an attempt to "sweeten its Olympic bid next month, ESPN is tossing around the idea of supplementing its TV rights offer with a marketing deal from its parent company," according to Ourand & Mickle of SPORTSBUSINESS JOURNAL. A deal "being considered would make Disney a member of The Olympic Partner (TOP) program," the IOC's "marquee sponsorship group, and grant the entertainment company licensing and intellectual property rights." Disney and ESPN execs "haven’t made a final decision about how such a deal would be structured, and it’s unlikely the company would pay the $100 million over four years that other TOP partners pay." But sources "believe a Disney sponsorship would distinguish it from its broadcast competitors during rights negotiations by marrying the Olympic rings with Disney’s immense global entertainment assets and familiar content popular with youth across the globe" (SPORTSBUSINESS JOURNAL, 5/16 issue).
WORKING TOGETHER: SPORTSBUSINESS JOURNAL's Tripp Mickle reports in a move that "could affect bidding for future Olympic TV rights," the USOC "has expanded its sales partnership with NBC Sports beyond the financial services sector to also include the home improvement category." The organization and network "will collaborate to sell a home improvement sponsorship and advertising package the same way they sold the online brokerage and banking categories to TD Ameritrade and Citi, respectively." The move "underscores the USOC’s belief that a joint advertising-sponsorship package appeals to potential sponsors and increases the likelihood that the USOC will partner with a network on sponsorship and advertising sales for the 2014 and 2016 Olympics." The approach is "welcome news to the major networks, as such a decision could affect how much networks are willing to pay for Olympic rights by making future advertising packages more lucrative for a network and easier to sell" (SPORTSBUSINESS JOURNAL, 5/16 issue).