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Samsung Tells Athletes to Cover Up Competitors' Logos as Brands Balk at Rule 40

Posted by Mark J. Miller on February 6, 2014 05:44 PM

Samsung has no doubt shelled out some serious cash to be an official Olympic sponsor in Sochi, and now it's exercising some of that weight it paid for.

As part of their Olympic goodie bags, athletes will be receiving Samsung Galaxy Note 3 smartphones. That's a pretty nice gesture from Samsung, but it is asking (demanding?) something in return. If athletes are using anything other than a Samsung device during the games, they must cover up the logo. So athletes are expected to put a piece of tape or other kind of cover over the Apple logos on their iPhones, among other brands. 

According to CultofMac, Samsung made the same request at the 2012 London Summer Olympics, though it remains unclear what happens to those who don't bother covering up their competitors' logo.Continue reading...

olympic effort

On Eve of Sochi Olympics, AT&T Leads Brands Protesting Russia's LGBT Stance

Posted by Mark J. Miller on February 4, 2014 07:17 PM

With the Super Bowl over, it's time for the US and the rest of the world to move on to the Winter Olympics, which are set to begin this Friday in Sochi, Russia. Amid the controversy over Russia's anti-gay laws, brands are doing their best to keep spirits high and tread carefully in what has become a very sensitive situation for sponsors, athletes and fans alike.

AT&T is the latest Team USA Olympic sponsor to debut its campaign, but it's doing so in a way that makes its views clear beyond cheering athletes. For the It's Our Time campaign (hashtag: #ItsOurTime) the telecom giant is rolling out an app, a website and video booths around the US to encourage fans to send "USA!" chants over to Sochi to show their support for their home team.

That's not the only messaging attached to the campaign. While it was Coca-Cola that recently took a stance by running the first ever Super Bowl ad featuring a gay couple, it's AT&T that's leading the way on the Olympic LGBT front by publicly speaking out in favor of equality and condemning homophobia, specifically Russia's ban on gay "propaganda."Continue reading...

sporting brands

FIFA Investigating Slavery Allegations in World Cup Host Nation, Qatar

Posted by Mark J. Miller on September 26, 2013 05:45 PM

When soccer’s international governing body, FIFA, awarded Qatar with the 2022 World Cup, there was some concern about the country's summer heat that reaches well above 100 degrees Fahrenheit. But it turns out that Qatar's brutal heat will be the least of FIFA's problems.

The Guardian reports that 44 Nepalese migrant workers died between June 4 and August 8 due to "modern-day slavery" conditions they were forced to endure. Fellow laborers told the paper that they're working extremely long hours without food and money, living in squalor and have been prevented from leaving the country. 

"We were working on an empty stomach for 24 hours; 12 hours' work and then no food all night," Ram Kumar Mahara told the paper. "When I complained, my manager assaulted me, kicked me out of the labor camp I lived in and refused to pay me anything. I had to beg for food from other workers."Continue reading...

sporting brands

Adidas Loses Big UK Athletic Sponsorship to Rival Nike

Posted by Mark J. Miller on September 5, 2013 07:14 PM

Adidas has been the sponsor of the United Kingdom’s athletic teams since 2005, but no longer. The long-time sponsor lost its contract to who else but its arch rival, Nike, which inked a sever-year deal reportedly worth upwards of $23 million, rumored to be double what Adidas bid. 

So while the UK's track and field athletes will be wearing Nike gear when the world championships are held in London in 2017, the teams will still don Adidas-branded apparel for the 2016 Rio Olympics, which has its own sponsorship deal with the company. 

Adidas knows all too well how crucial sponsorships are to its business. After it outfitted Olympic runner Jesse Owens in the 1936 Olympics, where he went on to win four medals, the brand took off. The deal however does make life a bit easier and less confusing for a handful of British athletes such as distance runner Mo Farah, who has donned Nike shoes but an Adidas singlet in his races, according to Runner's World.Continue reading...

sporting brands

IOC Praises South Korea's Olympic Progress as Logo, Master Plan is Complete

Posted by Mark J. Miller on June 19, 2013 06:02 PM

There will be two more Olympiads—first in Sochi, Russia next year, and then in Brazil in 2016—before the Olympic and Paralympic torches roll into PyeongChang, South Korea and light the cauldron to kick off the 2018 Winter Games. Before then, whole arenas and hotels need to be built, new sports need to be considered, and complete teams need to be constructed.

According to the IOC, which made its second visit to the country to check-in on how much progress has been made in preparation for the Games, things are well underway, and the committee is impressed

“We’ve once again seen good progress from PyeongChang 2018,” IOC member Gunilla Lindberg said, accordng to NBC. “And an excellent team effort from the Organizing Committee, all levels of government, and the Korean Olympic Committee."Continue reading...

London 2012

London 2012: To the Paralympics and Beyond!

Posted by Mark J. Miller on August 13, 2012 12:17 PM

As the world (and London's Heathrow airport) bids adieu to the Summer Olympians and gets ready for the Paralympic Games, a few thoughts to leave you with:

IOC Chief Rogge Celebrates His Last Games            

International Olympic Committee chief Jacques Rogge is getting ready to pass on the leadership torch and he is ending his long reign a happy man. Rogge toasted London’s Games Sunday, saying that these Olympics were “absolutely fabulous.” What bigger compliment can there be?

London 2012 Will Be Paid Off in Nine Years

The Summer Olympics may have cost billions for London to throw, including all the lost revenue from tourists who were scared away and residents who worked at home during the Games. But the Centre for Economics and Business Research estimates that the whole extravagant shebang will pay for itself by 2021. The big jump will come in 2015, the think tank estimates, when the country will start generating an extra £1.8billion ($2.8 billion) a year due to the Games.Continue reading...

London 2012

P&G Creates Home Away From Home for Athletes and Families at London Olympics

Posted by Dale Buss on July 27, 2012 03:56 PM

Procter & Gamble had a good thing going with its mom-focused global campaign heading into the London Summer Olympics, and so like the world-class marketers they are, the company is trying to extend the string of positive impressions throughout the Games.

To that end, P&G CEO Bob McDonald and Global Brand Building Officer Marc Pritchard joined the mothers of several Olympic athletes and other P&G executives to virtually "ring" the opening bell of the New York Stock Exchange "remotely" — from the P&G Family Home pavilion in London.Continue reading...

London 2012

London 2012 Watch: Nike Flips the Bird to Olympics Brand Police

Posted by Mark J. Miller on July 25, 2012 07:14 PM

God help the poor Pepsi-loving soul who wanders through London over the next few weeks. The dreaded brand police are swarming the country in search of any signs of anyone mentioning or attempting to showcase any corporate entity that is a competitor to the official Olympics sponsors, and anyone who even so much as thinks of sponsor Coke’s biggest competitor should fear the consequences. But that's nothing compared to what Nike is staging: the brashest act of ambush marketing in the history of the Olympics Games. And we'll bet they get away with it because, well, it's Nike.Continue reading...

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