IOC Broadcasting Revenue On Pace to Be Highest Ever

Even with the Rio 2016 Olympics on the horizon, the International Olympic Committee’s (IOC) eyes are fixed even farther ahead, as the global organization is already in the middle of its push for broadcasting for the next Olympic cycle, that of the 2017-2020 time span.

As we sit in the middle of the 2013-2016 Olympic ‘quadrennium’, however, worldwide broadcast revenue figures are being released for that next cycle, which indicates just how big of a monetary-generating business the world’s biggest sporting competition is becoming.

Per the IOC’s Marketing Fact File, broadcast revenue from the Olympic quadrennium covering 2009 through 2012 topped off in the range of $3.85 billion. This figure then jumped by 6.5% into the next Olympic cycle, which resulted in a $4.1 billion total of IOC broadcast revenue. The table below reveals the last 8 Summer Olympic Games’ broadcast revenue’s upward trajectory, which falls parallel to the number of countries tapping into those broadcasting rights.

Olympic Games Broadcast Revenue (million) Number of Countries/Regions
1984 Los Angeles $286.9 156
1988 Seoul $402.6 160
1992 Barcelona $636.1 193
1996 Atlanta $898.3 214
2000 Sydney $1,331.6 220
2004 Athens $1,494 220
2008 Beijing $1,739 220
2012 London $2,569 220

Data made available by IOC Marketing Data File

For the 2017-2020 Olympic cycle estimates are pointing to the IOC already hitting the previous quadrennium’s revenue total of $4.1 billion – and we are still an entire two and half years away from the global event. (

Russia, India, the Middle East and Latin America have yet to even purchase broadcasting blocks, which will no doubt add to the total revenue figure for 2017 to 2020. is estimating those markets will contribute an additional $.4 billion to bring the entire amount to $4.5 billion, representing a 10% growth over 2009-2012.  10% is considered modest, yet positive in light of both the technological availability of data to eager spectators, as well as the economic turmoil and political unrest that is affecting many regions across the world.

Where does the IOC marketing revenue go?  According to the IOC, the organization distributes 90% of revenue to organizers throughout the Olympic Movement, including National Olympic Committees, International Sports Federations and Organizing Committees for the Olympic Games.

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All interesting figures for the future but why do we have to interrupt what is a normal swimming schedule just to achieve the mighty dollar. Oh thats right we no longer worry about the athlete it is the commercial value of the event!!

About Loretta Race

Loretta Race

After 16 years at a Fortune 1000 financial company, long-time swimmer Retta Race decided to change lanes and pursue her sporting passion. She currently is Coach for the Northern KY Swordfish Masters, a team she started up in December 2013, while also offering private coaching. Retta is also an MBA …

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