Samsung first became a full
sponsor of the Olympic Games during the Nagano Olympic Winter Games in 1998.
According to the new contract, Samsung will officially sponsor the Olympic
Games and the Olympic Movement for the next eight years, through the Vancouver
Olympic Winter Games in 2010, the London Olympic Games in 2012, the 2014
Olympic Winter Games, and the 2016 Olympic Games.
The Samsung-IOC Olympic Games sponsorship contract signing ceremony was
attended by Samsung Chairman, Kun-Hee Lee, who arrived in Beijing after a
three-week business trip to Europe, and more than 200 officials in sports from
around the world, including International Olympic Committee President Jacques
Rogge, Chief Executive Officer of the Vancouver Organizing Committee for the
2010 Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games (VANOC) John Furlong, and London
Organizing Committee of the Olympic Games and Paralympic Games (LOCOG)
Chairman Sebastian Coe.
According to guidelines set forth by Samsung Chairman, Kun-Hee Lee in
1996 – “Devise strategies that can raise brand value, which is a leading
intangible asset and the source of corporate competitiveness, to the global
level” – Samsung decided to sponsor the Olympic Movement to strengthen its
global corporate image and brand value and has been carrying out a global
marketing campaign with the Olympic Games and the Olympic Movement as the
Accordingly, Samsung concluded a TOP (The Olympic Partner) sponsorship
contract with the IOC in 1997. Since then, the company has been an official
sponsor in the wireless telecommunications equipment category, including the
Nagano 1998 Olympic Winter Games, the Sydney 2000 Olympic Games, the Salt Lake
2002 Olympic Winter Games, the Athens 2004 Olympic Games, the Torino 2006
Olympic Winter Games, and the Beijing 2008 Olympic Games. By sponsoring the
Olympic Games and the Olympic Movement for the last ten years, Samsung has
made great strides towards becoming a “cutting-edge global brand” that leads
the mobile phone industry. The Beijing Olympic Games in 2008 are expected to
be the climax of the company’s efforts for the last ten years.
In fact, Samsung’s brand value grew more than five-fold from a mere
3.1 billion dollars in 1999 to 16.2 billion dollars in 2006, according to the
annual company brand value ratings by Interbrand, the world’s largest brand
consulting company. According to Strategy Analytics, a market research
organization, Samsung’s global mobile phone market share went up from 5.0% in
1999 to 11.6% last year, and its sales volume increased seven times from
16.65 million units to 114 million units.
The Partnership between Samsung and the Olympic Movement is mutually
beneficial. Samsung is demonstrating its cutting-edge wireless technology at
the Olympic Games, and is fully living up to its corporate philosophy –
“contribute to society” – through the Olympic Movement. Wireless Olympic Works
(WOW), first released by Samsung for the Athens 2004 Olympic Games, is a
service that enables the real-time transmission of Olympic Games information
to mobile phones.
Samsung seeks to boost the value of the Olympic Games and prepare for the
Olympic Ceremonies as a worldwide partner in the wireless telecommunications
equipment category, making a shift from a voice-based, “mobile phone-centered”
sponsorship to delivering all forms of information via the mobile phone.
By sponsoring the Olympic Games for the next eight years, including the
TOP VII (Vancouver 2010 -London 2012) and TOP VIII (host countries not yet
determined), in addition to the TOP IV (Nagano 1998 -Sydney 2000), TOP V (Salt
Lake City 2002 -Athens 2004) and TOP VI (Torino 2006 -Beijing 2008), Samsung
will create a strong association between the Olympic Movement and Samsung, and
will further enhance the status of the Samsung brand. By concluding a
long-term Olympic sponsorship contract, Samsung is proving that investing in
the Olympic Games is key to growth of a “brand” and “mobile phones”, and is
showing the world that investing in the Olympic Games means unlimited growth
Vice Chairman and CEO, Jong-Yong Yun of Samsung Electronics and
International Olympic Committee Marketing Commission Chairman, Gerhard Heiberg
held a signing ceremony on Samsung’s eight-year sponsorship at a specially
produced signing table at the Diaoyutai State Guesthouse on the evening of
April 23. Samsung Chairman, Kun-Hee Lee demonstrated great interest by
personally welcoming officials in the sports field from across the globe,
including the IOC President, Jacques Rogge.
During the signing ceremony on April 23, Daniel Newham from England and
Xuchunni from China were joint MCs, and Canadian Ana Yang gave a bubble
performance that symbolizes the “Dreams of the Olympic Games and Samsung.” The
ceremony was made all the more meaningful with the participation of a
performer from England, who plays the main character of the musical “The
Little Prince,” officials from countries who will host the Olympic Games, and
Sumi Jo, a Korean soprano.