• Loading stock data...
Sunday, June 16, 2024

Visa’s Sponsorship Of The Refugee Olympic Team

By: Zach Seybert, @zlseybert

Source: https://usa.visa.com/olympics/olympic-games-travel-and-spend.html

With the 2016 Olympics in Rio De Janeiro, Brazil kicking off on August 5, a number of athletes have decided to pass on the opportunity to compete due to injuries, the Zika virus or security concerns. These athletes include global names such as Steph Curry and LeBron James, the world’s top four ranked golfers (Jason Day, Dustin Johnson, Jordan Spieth and Rory McIlroy), and tennis star Roger Federer (Switzerland), who announced that he will not be competing for the rest of 2016 due to a knee injury, among others. For a list of notable athletes skipping the Olympics see graphic below.


Something that has not gotten much media attention due to the overshadowing of these high profile athletes not participating is the creation of the inaugural refugee team competing in next month’s Olympics.

The International Olympic Committee (IOC) introduced this team to draw global attention to the plight of refugees. On July 20, the world’s largest payments network, Visa Inc., announced that it had signed sponsorship with each of the team’s 10 athletes, becoming the first corporate sponsor. This partnership encompasses the global nature of the Olympics and is fitting given that the team will be competing as world representatives.

The team is made of up six men and four women, who will compete in swimming, judo and athletics events and will march in the opening ceremony carrying the Olympic flag just before the host country of Brazil. They were named to the Refugee Olympic Team (ROT) by the Executive Board of the IOC. All of the athletes are required to have official refugee status as granted by the United Nations. For more information on official refugee status, click here for the United Nations designation.

*Roster information from: https://www.olympic.org/news/refugee-olympic-team-to-shine-spotlight-on-worldwide-refugee-crisis

Visa’s Chief Marketing Innovation and Brand Officer, Chris Curtin, said this sponsorship ties into the concept of acceptance which is one of the main messages behind the company’s Olympic campaign. The company can use the refugee team in their marketing campaigns, per the IOC’s approval.

This deal with the inaugural refugee team comes after Visa had previously announced a sponsorship deal with Syrian refugee and elite swimmer, Yusra Mardini, who, with her sister, swam for more than three hours in the open sea to get to Greece after her small boat capsized. Additionally, she helped more than a dozen people who could not swim reach the shore.

*Example of Visa’s sponsorship with Yursa Mardini. Photo via brandchannel.com.

As part of the IOC’s pledge to aid potential athletes affected by the worldwide refugee crisis, National Olympic Committee’s (NOCs) from around the world were asked to support and identify with members of the ROT for the 2016 Games. With this support, the athletes could receive funding from Olympic Solidarity to assist with their preparations and qualification efforts. Olympic Solidarity was founded in 1961 and, according to Olympics.org, “is the body responsible for managing and administering the share of television rights of the Olympic Games that is allocated to the NOCs.” Rule 5 of the Olympic Charter says, “The aim of Olympic Solidarity is to organise assistante to NOCs, in particular those which have the greatest need of it. The assistance takes the form of programmes elaborated jointly by the IOC and the NOCs, with the technical assistance of the IFs (international sports federations), if necessary.”

In addition to the Refugee Olympic Team, Visa is working with 60 Olympians and Paralympians leading up to the games in Rio, including US athletes Missy Franklin, Kerri Walsh Jennings and Ashton Eaton.

In a way, not only has Visa become the team’s first corporate sponsor, but the various NOCs that are supporting the athletes have also become sponsors for the inaugural Refugee Olympic Team. Regardless of their performance over the roughly two weeks of competition, this team is raising awareness on a global scale while paving the way for future refugees to compete in sports.

Linkedin
Whatsapp
Copy Link
Link Copied
Link Copied

What to Read

IOC Proposes Holding Separate Olympics for Esports

The organization’s executive board has proposed a separate Olympics for online gaming.

Why Alexis Ohanian Thinks Women’s Track Is Ripe for Heavy Investment

The serial sports investor explains his plans for women’s track to ‘FOS.’

USA Cricket Is on the Cusp of a Historic Win. But Who Can Watch?

On Wednesday, the U.S. will face the pre-tournament favorite, India.

An Olympic Contender Explains How You Can ‘Lose Money’ In Elite Running

‘If you want to make money in this sport, it’s all about shoe deals. It’s all about getting sponsored.’
podcast thumbnail mobile
Front Office Sports Today

How the US Open is Designed for Drama

0:00

Featured Today

Jan 3, 2022; Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, USA; General view of the NFL shield logo signage before the Pittsburgh Steelers host the Cleveland Browns at Heinz Field.

Odds Stacked Against NFL in Multibillion-Dollar Sunday Ticket Trial

Why the class action trial does not look promising for the league.
Jan 7, 2024; San Francisco, California, USA; Toronto Raptors forward Jontay Porter (11) takes a three-point shot against the Golden State Warriors during the second half at Chase Center.
June 9, 2024

‘Bound to Happen’: The Age of the Sports Betting Scandal Has Arrived

A banishment, betting scheme, and guilty plea all in one scandal-filled span.
June 8, 2024

‘Experimental in Nature’: The Rapid, Confounding Rise of Streaming Bundles

Here’s why confusion continues to outweigh solutions in the streaming package boom.
June 2, 2024

The Nostalgia Market: Michael Jordan’s Memorabilia Remains Coveted, With Caveats

Due to scarcity, and sometimes, items’ undisclosed whereabouts, this world has limitations.
Sponsored

How Sportradar and the NBA are Partnering to Fuel Fan Engagement

How Sportradar and the NBA are utilizing data to enhance fan engagement
Oakland-A's
April 25, 2023

Oakland A’s Could Share Stadium with Triple-A Team

The Oakland A’s could be searching for a place to play.
Sponsored

MLS’ Chris Schlosser on Pioneering the Digital-First Sports League with AI

Chris Schlosser discusses MLS’s growth and digital transformation.
Sponsored

How HOKA is Reimagining the NIL Relationship

HOKA, the renowned athletic footwear and apparel brand, is betting on a new reality with NIL.
Titans stadium.
April 19, 2023

Titans’ Historic New $2.1B Stadium One Step Closer to Reality

About $1.26B in public money would go toward the new stadium.
Crypto-markets-sports-sponsorship
May 20, 2022

Crypto Crash Impact on Sports Sponsorships

Prior to the last two weeks, cryptocurrencies, NFTs, exchanges, and a host…
Insights-Wearables-Consumers
March 11, 2022

The Evolution of Consumer Wearables

The wearables market has seen incredible amounts of growth since the onset of the pandemic. Trends like telemedicine and remote patient monitoring have helped spur adoption and inspired new consumer products that allow for the tracking and collection of biometric data.
February 11, 2022

The Role of Live Sports in Streaming

The streaming wars have intensified as the field is as competitive as ever. One way to retain customers? The answer might be live sports.