P&G eyes partnership Olympic Games activity

Procter & Gamble is looking into potential partnerships with other Olympic sponsors, including Coca-Cola and GE, for joint marketing activity around London 2012.

The household goods group, which owns the Ariel, Olay and Pringles brands, has signed a sponsorship deal with the International Olympic Committee (IOC) that enables it to promote multiple products. Officially, P&G is 'Olympic worldwide partner in the personal care and household products category' until the 2020 summer Games.

Marc Pritchard, global marketing and brand building officer at P&G, told Marketing there was potential for joint marketing with other London 2012 sponsors like Coca-Cola and GE.

P&G's commitment to the Olympics follows its sponsorship of the US national team at the Winter Games in Vancouver earlier this year.

The activity signalled the company's first foray into marketing around the Olympics. It included providing residents of the Olympic Village with laundry and baby-changing services, as well as boxes of the snack food Pringles.

P&G said the activity in Vancouver resulted in an increase in 'brand favourability ratings' and claimed it led to a $100m rise in incremental US sales.

As part of its IOC deal, for which terms have not been disclosed, P&G will sponsor athletes' families, while its individual brands will be linked to national teams and the athletes themselves.

Pritchard said the company would approach the British Olympic Association about the possibility of sponsoring UK athletes.

P&G has already revealed that its London 2012 sponsorship will continue the family-themed strategy practised in Vancouver. The company said it will focus on the athletes' mothers - Jennifer Bolt, mother of Usain, and Pat Radcliffe, mother of Paula, attended the launch of the project.

Jacques Rogge, president of the IOC, said the financial support from P&G will boost the Olympic movement and that he would use the company's 'consumer insight' to help communicate Olympic values.

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