Sep 29, 2009 at 07:21 PM
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Breaking Down the Bids: Who's Backing Who

3 days and counting... crunch time.

The giving is done, for now, so we figured we'd take a look at the corporate anatomy of a bid.

Chicago, which has projected unparalleled corporate sponsorship in its bid, leads the pack in number of supporters listed on their website by no insignificant margin. Click on each of the cities below to see their full list of partners.

Tokyo - 17 - Companies you've heard of: Yahoo! Japan, JAL, Asics, Bandai, Asahi

Madrid - 68 - Companies you've heard of: Accenture, PriceWaterhouseCoopers, Iberia, Siemens, Peugot

Rio - 16 - Companies you've heard of: Siemens, PriceWaterhouseCoopers

Chicago - 562 - Companies you've heard of: too many to list (click the link to see!)

Who's double dating? PriceWaterhouseCoopers, Accenture and Siemens all support more than one bid.

Common categories of support: airline, internet portals, banking, consulting, technology infrastructure, architecture/design, logistics and marketing services

Sponsors/Partners/Suppliers/Donors support the bids for a variety of different reasons.

For the bids, showing corporate support is critical to proving the viability of the enormous task potentially ahead of them.

"Their support underlines the extensive support we have from all corners of Spanish society for our bid. It shows how much everyone in Spain wants to host the best Games ever," Madrid 2016 head Mercedes Coghen recently said.

Given the projected economic boost associated with the Games, local businesses can benefit for many years to come. Job creation, incremental tax revenue and goodwill efforts are some of the benefits cited in Chicago 2016's economic-impact study, which forecasted the Games would stimulate $22.5 billion of incremental economic activity in the State of Illinois.

"Chicago’s enormous visibility on the global stage, should it be chosen to host the Games in 2016, would have a direct impact on the city’s tourism industry, educational institutions, cultural institutions, business community and neighborhoods," a Chicago 2016 statement said.

As for existing TOP sponsors, they are restricted from showing support for any one bid under IOC regulations. Doesn't always work out that way. At last year's Relay Sports Sponsorship Symposium, Chicago-based McDonald's took some heat for comments made by John Lewicki, V.P. of alliance marketing, that seemingly expressed an interest in seeing Chicago win.

TOP partner Coca-Cola had to keep mum in a similar situation when its hometown headquarters was chosen for the 1996 Summer Games.

“It was great because it was our hometown, but we would have loved any of the cities because we’re a global brand,” Susan Stribling a Spokeswoman for Coca-Cola told Bloomberg.

As you might expect with such an enormous branding task, there are many marketing services agencies that are already involved in varying capacities.

Here's a few of the ones that Chicago2016 lists:

  • Aspen Marketing
  • Draft FCB
  • Leo Burnett
  • Ogilvy
  • Teamworks Media
  • The Nielsen Company
  • Hill & Knowlton
  • IMG Worldwide
  • Burson-Marsteller
  • Energy BBDO
  • SMG Soldier Field

    Several notable surprises in and missing from the list.

    But here's the question everyone wants to know. Will Chicago's commercial appeal help sway IOC voters in Copenhagen this Friday?

    On Friday, we'll have that answer.