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How COVID-19 pandemic put Olympic sponsors in difficult position
Updated: 2021-07-23 09:33:45 KST
"It is against basic ethics to hold such an event when the world is suffering so much. I think it's wrong to hold the Olympics during this period,"

This is still a general sentiment in Japan about the upcoming Olympics,with some polls showing around 70 percent of the total population wanting them to be canceled.
Such opposition has put sponsors in a difficult spot with how they're going to position themselves at a pandemic-tainted Games.

"There is a mixed public sentiment towards the Games at this moment, or even (the) past year towards the Games. So, in that respect, there must be a decision by each company in terms of how they should be able to disseminate, how they should be able to convey their messages"

Many have chosen to distance themselves.
That includes Toyota, a leading worldwide sponsor, which has decided not to air any Olympics-related TV commercials in Japan. and its president will not be attending the Opening Ceremony.
The same decision was made by the country's three biggest business associations, choosing not to send their leaders to Friday's opening ceremony.
Airbnb, also a worldwide sponsor of the Olympics, made it clear during an interview with U.S. news outlet Axios, that the partnership was designed specifically to support the individual Olympic and Paralympic athletesand NOT any particular city or Games.
However, some are taking a different path,. swiftly adjusting their marketing strategies instead of completely pulling out.
Samsung Electronics, the only Korean company among the top 15 sponsors of the Games, has come up with a virtual media center where people can get a sneak peek of their Galaxy products safely at home.
Another way Samsung expanded its marketing was to form Team Galaxy, made up of 11 South Korean athletes with some wearing the new Galaxy Watch 4.
The top sponsors of the Olympics have reportedly paid around 500 million U.S. dollars for multi-year rights for marketing and exclusive deals with the International Olympic Committee.
And about half of the total budget for the Tokyo's Olympic and Paralympic Games which is around 3 billion dollars came from the local sponsorships.
Kim Sung-min Arirang News
Reporter : smkim@arirang.com