IOC Marketing Report – Beijing 200839 SponsorshipChapter Four " Our partners share the brand values that the IOC safeguards, trusts, and respects, and in doing so the partners become part of the Olympic Family. We work hard to pursue their interests and they work hard to pursue ours, and that is what every successful partnership has in common. It's all a vital part of a virtuous circle." Timo Lumme, Director, IOC Television and Marketing Services Founded in 1985 and currently in its sixth generation, the TOP Programme is now stronger than it has ever been. TOP VI ( 2005- 2008) sponsors are headquartered in seven countries across three continents – demonstrating global participation that mirrors the worldwide nature of the Olympic Movement. For the IOC, the importance of corporate partnerships for the maintenance and growth of the Olympic Movement cannot be overstated. The financial and operational support these partners provide is irreplaceable. For example, National Olympic Committees receive financial support from the TOP Programme that is vital to developing Olympic teams and sending athletes to participate in the Games. A modern Olympic Games is a massively challenging organisational and managerial exercise. It demands precision, speed of thought and communication, effective handling and distribution of information, sound decision making and the ability to adapt seamlessly to changing circumstances. TOP Partners provide the resources, products and expertise to stage the biggest sporting event in the world. At Games time, partner technology and operational support – without which the Games could not take place – includes timing and scoring systems, IT infrastructure, sustenance for the athletes, workforce and spectators, audiovisual infrastructure, security equipment, and venue infrastructure, to name but a few.
Many of these key aspects have been developed over time by partners who have participated in the TOP Programme since its inception, creating a matchless operational resource for the successful staging of the Games. These operational advantages also ensure that each Games is more efficient than the last. In addition to the direct investment of funding and goods and services, Olympic commercial partners also allocate significant budget and expertise towards helping to promote the Games and the Olympic values around the world. TOP Partners typically spend up to three times the value of their sponsorship fees to promote their association with the Olympic Movement. This level of commitment gives the Olympic Movement a reach that the IOC simply could not achieve alone, and is also essential in cultivating support for the Olympic Movement's educational, cultural, environmental and youth initiatives. " Without our sponsors, the Olympic Games would not be what they are today. The partners' support allows more athletes from more countries to compete in the Games, and they deliver the services and resources that are the driving force of the Olympic Movement." Gerhard Heiberg, Chairman, IOC Marketing Commission 40IOC Marketing Report – Beijing 2008 Chapter FourSponsorship " The sheer variety and creativity of the initiatives employed by our partners is staggering. You can't be an Olympic sponsor by being passive. It is always a dynamic process and that dynamism has kept the Games on the leading edge of marketing." Timo Lumme, Director, IOC Television and Marketing Services