News Corp rekindles backing of Australian Olympic Committee

The Australian Olympic Committee has entered into a partnership with the country’s division of media conglomerate News Corporation.

News Corp Australia has agreed a five-year deal with the AOC, which will culminate in the 2020 Olympic Games in Tokyo. The two parties last teamed up in 2000, when News Corp Australia sponsored the Olympic torch relay ahead of Sydney's hosting of the Games.

The company will provide the AOC with funding for next year’s Games in Rio de Janeiro, the 2018 winter Olympics in PyeongChang and the 2020 summer Games in Tokyo. News Corp Australia will extend its backing to the country’s youth Olympic teams over the course of the deal.

Australia’s teams will be promoted through News Corp’s various newspapers and digital and social media channels. The company will also launch a 10-week countdown ahead of next year’s Games, which will provide a behind-the-scenes look at the athletes representing Australia in Brazil.

AOC president and International Olympic Committee vice-president, John Coates, said: “You will have a lot to write about and a lot to cover. We are very appreciative of this partnership as it also gives us the opportunity to promote the values of the Olympics which is very important to us.”

The sponsorship announcement today (Friday) was supported by Olympic swimming legend Liesel Jones, dual water polo Olympian Richie Campbell, world rowing silver medallist Cameron Grindlestone and rugby sevens star Tiana Penatani. Campbell (pictured), Girdlestone and Penitani are all seeking selection for Rio 2016.  

The AOC said it is costing A$23m (€15.6m/$16.5m) to send the 2016 Australian Olympic team to Rio, adding this would not be possible without the backing of sponsors.