The International Olympic Committee (IOC), The Coca-Cola Company and China Mengniu Dairy Company Ltd have today announced that they have signed the first-ever Joint TOP Partnership Agreement. The partnership combines the non-alcoholic beverage and the dairy categories into a new joint category, and brings Chinese dairy company Mengniu into the family of Worldwide TOP Partners.
According to some media reports the $ 3 billion (₹ 21,000 crore) is among the biggest ever corporate sponsorship in sports. The deal is unique in more than one ways, confirmed the IOC President Thomas Bach.
The new joint agreement has a 12-year term running through to the Olympic Games 2032. The agreement includes unprecedented investment in traditional and digital media to promote the Olympic values globally.
This agreement extends The Coca-Cola Company’s association with the Olympic Movement to a historic 104-year-long relationship. The Coca-Cola Company is the longest continuous Partner of the Olympic Games, IOC has announced in a statement.
The deal was announced at a Press conference in Lausanne, Switzerland, and broadcast live by the IOC.
Mengniu becomes the first Chinese fast-moving consumer goods company to become a TOP Partner. The Joint TOP partnership supports Mengniu’s ambitious international growth plans, with the company aiming to become one of the top dairy producers in the world by 2025.
Also Read: Hockey celebrates Olympic Day worldwide
IOC President Thomas Bach said: “This long-term agreement is another demonstration of the relevance and stability of the Olympic Games in these times of uncertainty. Having our longest-standing partner, Coca-Cola, an iconic American brand, together with a young Chinese company, Mengniu, joining hands under the roof of our Worldwide TOP Programme is a great example of the unifying power of the Olympic spirit. This partnership will give another dimension to the promotion of the Olympic values around the world.”
James Quincey, Chairman and CEO of The Coca-Cola Company, said: “We are honoured and privileged to be a part of the Olympic Movement that makes it possible for athletes from all over the world to come together to represent their nations, pursue their dreams and be a part of history. A lot has changed since we sold the first Coca-Cola at an Olympic event in 1928. With a fresh approach to our business and to our sponsorship, we are proud to join with Mengniu to promote and celebrate future Olympic Games.”
Jeffrey Lu, CEO and Executive Director of Mengniu, said: “Membership of the TOP Programme will act as a catalyst for Mengniu to grow around the world. This is a vital step in our international strategy, and we are honoured to have the opportunity to build the positive reputation of Chinese food and beverage brands among consumers globally. As a Worldwide TOP Partner, we look forward to using the unrivalled platform of the Olympic Games to promote health and joy to Olympians and fans alike.”
Worldwide Olympic Partners support every National Olympic Committee and their teams, and every Organiser of the Olympic Games, as well as providing support for athletes’ training and development. In addition, they promote the ideals and values of the Olympic Movement and help create memorable experiences for spectators and fans around the world.
The Coca-Cola Company has had a presence at the Olympic Games since the 1928 Games in Amsterdam. With its current agreement with the IOC ending in 2020.
The Coca-Cola Company will now continue its partnership with this new Joint TOP agreement through to the Olympic Winter Games 2022 in Beijing, the Olympic Games 2024 in Paris, the Olympic Winter Games 2026, the Olympic Games 2028 in Los Angeles, and the Olympic Games 2030 and 2032. The host city for the Olympic Winter Games 2026 will be named later today.
The Joint TOP agreement also includes marketing rights for the International Paralympic Committee (IPC) and the Paralympic Games through the IOC-IPC long-term collaboration agreement, as well as for the Youth Olympic Games.
Olympic marketing programmes are based on the fundamental principle of exclusivity within a specific product category and territory. The current Beijing 2022 domestic partner’s exclusive rights in its designated category in the Chinese market will not be affected.
Jiri Kejval, IOC Marketing Commission Chair, said: “We are very excited to continue our relationship with our long-standing Partner Coca-Cola for many years to come, and to begin working with Mengniu. The agreement represents an unprecedented commitment to support the IOC to engage young people and promote the Olympic values around the world. We are also delighted to bring another Chinese company to the Worldwide Olympic Partner family as part of this collaboration.”
Bea Perez, Chief Public Affairs, Communications, Sustainability and Marketing Assets Officer for The Coca-Cola Company, said: “We’ve been a part of bringing so many incredible moments to Olympic Games fans over the years – moments that have been inspired by the pursuit of excellence, the possibility of opportunities, the spirit of competition, and a vision for a better world. With the past 90 years as our foundation, we can’t help but be excited for what the future holds.”
Yong Zhang, Vice-President of Strategy at Mengniu, added: “The Olympic Movement and Mengniu are naturally aligned. We both aim to bring health and joy to people, and Mengniu’s brand advocates ‘Born for Greatness’ – another natural fit with the Olympic values. Mengniu reaches hundreds of millions of consumers worldwide and will encourage more people to follow and participate in the Olympic Movement, while also contributing ‘China’s strength’ to the global development of the Olympic cause and successful hosting of future Olympic Games.”