More than a year after the 2020 Summer Olympics were first delayed due to pandemic concerns, the games’ perennial broadcaster NBCUniversal has revealed it expects to have the largest line-up of advertisers in the event’s TV history and exceed the more than $1 billion ad sales total recorded during the Rio Games in 2016.
The International Olympic Committee has been steadfast in its mission of holding the competition in Tokyo on schedule next month—despite some observers’ concerns about the spread of COVID-19 in under-vaccinated Japan—and advertisers appear to have latched onto that confidence.
NBCUniversal anticipates that its U.S. broadcast of the international event will attract more than 120 advertisers, a 20% increase from the number of brands who snapped up airtime during the previous Summer Olympics five years ago. Of those, more than 80 will be first-time advertisers in the Games.
“There is an intangible excitement around the Tokyo Olympics unlike anything we’ve seen before,” says Mark Marshall, president of advertising and partnerships at NBCUniversal.
“Our partners and advertisers feel this same energy, and we are extremely proud of the team for their hard work in bringing in so many new and returning advertisers across virtually every category, despite the delays,” he continues.