Panasonic Extends IOC TOP Sponsorship Through '24; Tokyo Games A Likely Reason
Panasonic extended its global Olympic sponsorship through '24, making it the first of the IOC's TOP sponsors to sign a deal beyond '20. Financial terms of the deal were not available. TOP deals are typically valued at more than $100M over four years, which would make Panasonic’s deal worth more than $200M. Panasonic on Thursday held an official signing ceremony for the extension in Sochi. The agreement comes six months after Tokyo was awarded the '20 Games. Panasonic, which is headquartered in Osaka, Japan, was interested in supporting the Olympics in its home country, and the IOC was able to leverage that interest to secure a long-term deal. “As a Japanese company with a long, global Olympic experience, I’m sure [the sponsorship] will be of great assistance, in particular for the organization of the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games,” IOC Marketing Committee Chair Gerhard Heiberg said in a statement. The deal is the first the IOC has signed beyond the '17-20 quadrennium. The organization’s other TOP sponsors are signed up through '20. The IOC remains in renewal conversations with Samsung, which has a deal through '16. Until signing with Panasonic, the IOC had capped its sponsorship extensions until '20. It did so in order to allow it to negotiate a new revenue sharing agreement with the USOC. The IOC and USOC signed a new revenue sharing agreement in '12, curtailing the amount of new sponsorship revenue the USOC receives. The IOC also had planned to reevaluate its TOP program after '20, as it was considering changing the way the program is structured and increasing the price of sponsorships. Heiberg, who will step down from the Marketing Commission after Sochi, said last week that his successor would make those decisions and suggested changes could be introduced as soon as '21. But the deal with Panasonic appears to push potential changes back until '25. Panasonic is providing the SOCOG with LED displays, TVs and the largest supply of security cameras in the history of the Olympics. Unlike the '10 Vancouver and '12 London Games, it does not have a showcase pavilion in Sochi’s Olympic Park.