ESPN, Comcast May Battle For P&G Olympic Dollars

Olympic Rings

Maybe upping the stakes a bit as an expected Comcast versus ESPN battle looms for rights to future Olympic games, the winner can be expected to receive a bounty of ad dollars from Procter & Gamble. The world's largest advertiser has signed a 10-year deal that makes it an international sponsor of the Olympics from 2012-2020.

As an official International Olympic Committee partner, it's sure to spend liberally to advertise on U.S. broadcasts. In the coming bidding process, as Comcast takes control of NBC Universal, it's certain to be aggressive in trying to keep the Games on NBCU properties, while ESPN, with arguably unmatched resources, has repeatedly expressed an interest in peeling them away.

P&G was a sponsor of the U.S. Olympic team in the February Vancouver Games and was pleased with the results of the female-targeted campaign it ran.



Its new deal will give it global visibility with affiliation for the Summer Games in 2012 (London), 2016 (Rio) and 2020 (undetermined site), and Winter events in 2014 (Russia) and 2018 (undetermined locale).

P&G said it would also be involved with the Youth Olympic Games starting next month, as well as move ahead with backing national teams and individual athletes while continuing "to support moms and families though global expansion of the Proud Sponsor of Moms campaign."

In a branded-entertainment gambit, P&G said it would launch a documentary series "Raising an Olympian: The P&G Momumentary Project" by 2012. It will "follow several mothers from different parts of the world to document the dedication and sacrifices they are making to help fulfill the Olympic dreams of their children."

Much as Audi plugged its sponsorship of the U.S. ski team by airing a documentary on NBC before Vancouver, P&G could buy time to do the same on the network set to air the London Games.

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