John Lewis to sponsor London 2012 Olympics

LONDON - British retailer John Lewis has been unveiled as the latest sponsor of London 2012, with official in-store Olympic concessions planned for its Oxford Street and new Stratford outlets.

John Lewis: official London 2012 tie-up
John Lewis: official London 2012 tie-up

John Lewis has been a long term supporter of the London Games and is hoping to tap into interest selling official Olympic merchandise through its Westfield's Stratford City shopping centre location, close to the Olympic site.

All profits made from the Olympic merchandise will go back into London 2012. There will also be bespoke items eclusive to John Lewis.

John Lewis said that at the peak time of the Olympic's around 5500 square feet will be dedicated in the Oxord Street store to the Games.

Andy Street, managing director at John Lewis, also said the retailer would be gearing up marketing activity around the tie-up during the Olympic year and that it would be on top of normal marketing arrangements.

As the offical department store provider, a tier three sponsorship, John Lewis will also be seconding its 'partners' to the Games efforts, working in areas such as warehousing and furnishing.

John Lewis also also developed an intiative called 'Partners in Sport' and is sponsoring seven London 2012 hopefuls as well as funding sports coaches. The retailer is hoping for sportsmen and women, who are either 'partners' or relatives of 'partners', to be a part of Team GB.

In 2004 the John Lewis Partnership became the first retailer to back the London 2012 Olympic bid, with the company promoting it to 6 million customers nationwide through its John Lewis department stores and Waitrose supermarkets.

The sponsorship announcement was made at John Lewis' Oxford street store this morning.

John Lewis was one of the big retail winners of the Christmas period with sales increases of 12.7% on the previous year.

Last year the store began heavily pushing its home and electricals offers, which included launching a range of own-branded TVs and its first new shop format in two decades, focusing exclusively on the home sector.

As a result, home sales rose 19.6%, with electricals and home technology increasing by 11.4%.