Olympic and Paralympic marks
The Olympic Brand and the Integrated Program for
the Protection of Olympic and Paralympic Symbols
- The integrity of the Olympic brand and its preservation
- Protection of the Olympic Brand
- The general approach around the selection of official marketing partners for Sochi 2014
- The value of the Integrated Program
- Key focus areas of the Integrated Program
No other sporting event can unite the universal social ideals better than the Olympic and Paralympic Games and no other brand holds as much power as the five Olympic rings. Today the Olympic brand is a renowned symbol of unity in the sports world and represents the overall goal of perfection. In fact, numerous studies confirm that the Olympic rings is the most recognised symbol in the world. For the business community, this can mean that the Olympic Games are a gateway for new business opportunities. In this context, it is impossible to overestimate the importance, to companies in various sectors, of the Olympic movement's marketing program.
Today, the Olympic and Paralympic Games are recognized as the world's most important international sporting event, attracting audiences of 4.5 billion from around the globe. Undoubtedly, the values of the Olympic Movement as well as the interests of the Games' marketing partners must be actively protected, in order to ensure the event’s success. Effective protection of its rights, image and ideals has been the greatest accomplishment of the Olympic Movement in the past 20 years. The principle of exclusivity is the very foundation of the Olympic marketing program.
Preservation of the integrity of the Olympic brand and protection of the Olympic Movement from any unauthorized attempts to use the Olympic and Paralympic symbols is provided by the International Olympic Committee (IOC), International Paralympic Committee (IPC) and their authorized organizations. Following its victory in Guatemala, Sochi 2014 joined the group of IOC and IPC- approved organizations. According to the "Olympic law" (Federal Law № 310 from 01.12.2007) passed in the Russian Federation, the Sochi 2014 Organizing Committee officially represents the interests of the IOC and IPC in Russia as the sole owner of the exclusive rights to the Olympic and Paralympic symbols. Permission to use them in Russia can only be obtained by global partners of the IOC and the IPC, level 2 national partners of Sochi 2014 , as well as companies that have entered into licensing agreements with the Sochi 2014 Organizing Committee.
This provision is contained in the "Olympic law" of the Russian Federation, which, coupled with current legislation concerning intellectual property, as well as civil, administrative and criminal law, creates the legal framework that effectively prevents violation of the usage rights of the Olympic and Paralympic symbols.
The Organizing Committee's role in protecting the Olympic brand is mostly educational in nature –
to ensure awareness and understanding of the law, which will help make informed decisions. By implementing an integrated program intended to protect the Olympic and Paralympic symbols, we strive to inform and explain the law and help correct or avoid possible violations.
In December 2008, the Organizing Committee officially launched a marketing program for the Sochi 2014 Olympic Winter Games. Under the program, our partners will be able to leverage the Olympic brand by developing their own projects and integrating them into the overall marketing program. One of the key requirements for Sochi 2014 affiliation is a total commitment to the Olympic ideals; it is essential that by using their marketing programs, Sochi 2014 Partners act both as true ambassadors for the Olympic Movement and as advocates for Olympic values.
Today, many people think that the Sochi 2014 Winter Games are a public, national treasure and therefore believe that the Olympic symbols can be used in their company marketing as a way of "supporting the Games in Sochi". This assumption is, however, incorrect. The Olympic and Paralympic symbols are protected under Russian law just like any other item of intellectual property according to paragraph 4 of the Civil Code of the Russian Federation. The use of Olympic symbols, and suggestions that the advertised product, service, organization, or person is associated with the Olympic and Paralympic Games, is strictly illegal if no formal contract exists between the Sochi 2014 Organizing Committee and the company, private business, private individual, state or public organization. Such violations can cause significant damage to both the Games and their legacy. According to global practice, the host government normally subsidizes approximately 20% of the Organizing Committee’s expense budget for the Games. The Sochi 2014 Organizing Committee must obtain the remaining 80+% of funding by leveraging the strong marketing potential of the Games. 60% of funds obtained by the Sochi 2014 Organizing Committee will be allocated to the development of sports in the country, 20% for the needs of the IOC, and the remaining 20% to compensate the Russian Olympic Committee.
It should be clear that any attempt at unauthorized use of the Olympic and Paralympic symbols – from selling branded products using unauthenticated symbols, to unauthorized advertising campaigns exploiting the Olympic images— reduces the value of the Olympic brand and destroys its integrity. Ultimately, such activities also undermine two of the key processes that will help create a successful Games in Russia:
- To be able to achieve the marketing potential and required financial support not just for the Games, but also for the country's Olympic legacy and in particular the development of Russian sports.
- To promote the Olympic Movement's wholesome image and its key principle – not to compromise the Olympic ideals in the pursuit of profit.
The Sochi 2014 Organizing Committee does not limit its remit in protecting the Olympic brand, fighting to maintain its wholesomeness and preserving its integrity. We see it as our mission not only to protect the Olympic ideals, but also to establish common standards for the general treatment of intellectual property in Russia and to create a particular respect for the intellectual property of the IOC, IPC and the National Organizing Committee.
The campaign aim is to establish necessary standards which will, in the future be adhered to by public organizations and the business community. Major effort will be focused on educating Russian citizens on the importance of compliance with and respect for intellectual property rights. One of the key channels to communicate directly with the country's population is a toll-free hotline, "Sochi 2014" (tel: 8 800 100 2014), where callers can receive detailed information about various aspects of the Sochi 2014 Games and in particular, about protecting the Olympic brand.
The Organizing Committee is actively and successfully working with federal authorities, including their regional divisions. Bilateral agreements have already been signed with the Federal Customs Service of Russia, FAS, MIA, Rospotrebnadzor and Rospatent, which monitor the constant exchange of information in order to detect and prevent unauthorized use of Olympic and Paralympic symbols on Russian territory.
 Source: the IOC’s Olympic Review Magazine, September 2008
 National sponsorship program of the Sochi 2014 Organizing Committee envisions three levels of partnership: General partners (up to 10 companies), Official partners (10), Partner (15).
 Approved February 4, 2008 by the Presidium of the RF Presidential Council on the development of physical culture and sports, sports of high achievement, preparation and hosting of XXII Olympic Winter Games and XI Paralympic Winter Games in 2014.