(ATR) As first reported by Around the Rings last month, Japanese automaker Nissan will serve as the automotive sponsor for the Rio Olympics in 2016.
The organizing committee announced Wednesday that the company will provide a fleet of 4,500 vehicles, including cars powered by clean energy, to transport athletes, coaches, media and officials during the Games.
Rio 2016 president Carlos Nuzman said the sponsorship shows the appeal of Brazil’s market. "This partnership demonstrates the value of the Rio 2016 brand and the strength and attractiveness of the Brazilian consumer market."
"Against this backdrop and after six months of negotiations that also involved other applicants, Nissan submitted a proposal that ensures a consistent mix of products, services and financial backing, proving to be the ideal automotive partner for the Rio de Janeiro Olympic Games," he added.
Nissan’s winning bid exceeded the requirements of the category, according to Rio 2016. ATR previously reported that the deal may be worth a record $250 million.
If the estimate is accurate, the price tag surpasses the value of past Olympic sponsorships by Volkswagen and BMW. Volkswagen’s deal with the Beijing Olympics in 2008 was reportedly worth $150 million, while BMW’s partnership with London 2012 is valued at $70 million.
While Volkswagen – number-one brand in the country and sponsor for Sochi 2014 and Beijing 2008 – would have seemed to be a favorite for the category,Brazil represents an important growth market for Nissan.
The company plans to invest $1.5 billion to build a manufacturing facility in the state of Rio de Janiero and aims to capture five percent of the market share, according to an announcement back in October.
Commenting on the sponsorship deal, Nissan president and CEO Carlos Ghosn said the company has many connections to the South American country.
"Our multiple connections with Brazil are deep; in 2014 we open a new world-class manufacturingplant in Resende, state of Rio de Janeiro," he said.
"As a showcase for the energy and vision of Brazil, the Olympic Games are a natural fit for Nissan. We look forward to contributing towards making the Rio 2016 Games a world-class event for the city, state and country."
Through this deal, Nissan will provide driver training and logistics solutions, as well as marketing and legacy programs.
The automaker joins Bradesco, Bradesco Seguros, Claro and Embratel as tier one partners. Ernst and Young is the only tier two support so far.
Written by Ann Cantrell.
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