Coca-Cola, China's Mengniu Dairy sign Olympics sponsorship deal worth record $3B: Report

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Coca-Cola and Chinese firm Mengniu Dairy on Monday announced a joint agreement to sponsor the Olympics through 2032 in a deal that is said to be worth a record $3 billion.

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The agreement extends Coca-Cola’s long-term sponsorship ties with the International Olympic Committee, which were set to expire after the 2020 Summer Olympics in Tokyo. Coca-Cola’s partnership with Mengniu on a top-line sponsorship also marks the first time that the IOC has combined non-alcoholic beverages and dairy products into a joint sponsorship category.

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“This long-term agreement is another demonstration of the relevance and stability of the Olympic Games in these times of uncertainty,” IOC President Thomas Bach said in a statement. “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.”

Coca-Cola and Mengniu have jointly committed as much as $3 billion in the deal in terms of sponsorship rights and spending on media and advertising, the Financial Times reported, citing a source with knowledge of the negotiations. The sponsorship itself is reportedly worth $1.5 billion.

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Coca-Cola declined to say whether the report about the deal’s value was accurate. A joint press release said that the agreement, which spans six Olympic Games cycles and concludes in 2032, included “unprecedented investment and traditional and digital media to promote the Olympic values globally.”

“We do not discuss the financial aspects of our sponsorship,” a company spokesperson said.

Coca-Cola is the longest-running active sponsorship partner for the Olympics, with a relationship that dates back more than a century.

“We are honored 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,” Coca-Cola CEO and Chairman James Quincey said in a statement.

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Mengniu is one of China’s top producers of dairy products. The company’s CEO, Jeffrey Lu, said the Olympics sponsorship deal is a “vital step in our international strategy.”

“Membership of the TOP Programme will act as a catalyst for Mengniu to grow around the world,” Lu said.

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