Toyota becomes first automotive Olympic sponsor in new mobility category

Posted on 17 Mar 2015 by Tim Brown
Toyota joined as a major Olympics sponsor at an announcement in Tokyo attended by Toyota President Akio Toyoda (second from left) and IOC President Thomas Bach (second from right) - image courtesy of the IOC.

Toyota has joined other manufacturers including Dow, GE, Omega, Panasonic, P&G, Samsung and Coca-Cola as a major sponsor of the Olympic Games.

Toyota will join the The Olympic Partner (TOP) Programme in 2017 but will have marketing rights in Japan with immediate effect. Although the official terms of the deal were not released, Japanese media reported the deal was worth as much as $835m.

Toyota is the first automotive company to join The Olympic Partner (TOP) Programme and the agreement covers all relevant Toyota brands within the category, including Toyota, Lexus and Scion.

The announcement was made in the 2020 Olympic Games host city Tokyo on Friday by International Olympic Committee (IOC) President Thomas Bach and Toyota President Akio Toyoda.

In line with Olympic Agenda 2020, with sustainability as one of its key pillars, Toyota will work with the Organising Committees through to 2024 to provide sustainable mobility solutions for the Games to help with safer, more efficient mobility, including intelligent transport systems, urban traffic systems and vehicle-to-vehicle communications systems. The partnership will help deliver a mobility legacy in the host cities and countries.

IOC President Thomas Bach said: “This is a very symbolic day. It is the first time in the successful history of the TOP programme that we have had a mobility category. It is in the spirit of the Olympic Agenda 2020 not just in terms of innovation but also in terms of sustainability in mobility. Toyota is the world leader in its field and this partnership signifies a strong commitment to the future of the IOC and the Olympic Movement. Toyota and the IOC share the same values and we welcome Toyota Motor Corporation to the Olympic family.”

Toyota will also support the entire Olympic Movement through funding and a global promotional reach. Under the IOC’s management, the TOP Programme supports the National Olympic Committees and the Organising Committees, helping ensure that the Olympic Games and the Olympic Movement are truly global.

“We will do everything possible to fulfil our new role in The Olympic Partner Programme and to justify the trust that the IOC has placed in us,” said Toyota President Akio Toyoda.

The Winglet, Toyota’s personal transport assistance device, being used by Toyota President Akio Toyoda and IOC President Thomas Bach - image courtesy of the IOC
The Winglet, Toyota’s personal transport assistance device, being used by IOC President Thomas Bach and Toyota President Akio Toyoda – image courtesy of the IOC.

“The addition of the mobility category to The Olympic Partner Programme is important recognition for our entire industry. Under this Olympic flag, let us today reaffirm the power of sport to bring people together. Let us dedicate ourselves to creating a better world by promoting sport in the Olympic spirit of friendship, solidarity, and fair play.”

Toyota will also bring significant expertise to the Tokyo 2020 Organising Committee and further support the excellent progress it has already made. The Tokyo 2020 team, under the leadership of President Mori, has already embraced the philosophy of Olympic Agenda 2020 and the importance of sustainability. The excellent collaboration between the IOC and Tokyo 2020 has already resulted in savings of $1bn from the revised construction budget, following the IOC’s approval of three venue changes to the master plan for the Games.

In Tokyo, the IOC President Thomas Bach and the Chairman of the IOC Marketing Commission Tsunekazu Takeda visited the Toyota City Mega Web exhibition which showcases the latest cutting-edge products that will form part of Toyota’s sustainable mobility solutions. They had the opportunity to test drive some of the vehicles, including the Mirai, Toyota’s new hydrogen fuel-cell vehicle; the three wheeled, electric powered i-ROAD; and the Winglet, Toyota’s personal transport assistance robot.