Winter Olympics

Well, the Winter Olympics in Vancouver kick off tonight with the opening ceremonies. So, in keeping with the spirit of the games, I thought I’d share a bit of trivia for your contemplation.

  • NBC paid $820 Million for the broadcast rights to the games—34% more than they paid for the rights to broadcast the 2006 games.
  • The 2010 games are costing Canada $7.85 Billion, of which $1 Billion is for security alone. (What has happened to our world where so much security is needed for a “sporting” event? What is mankind becoming?)
  • The most profitable Olympics were held in Los Angeles in 1984, with $464 Million (today’s dollars) profit.
  • Rumors estimate the cost of the next winter games in Sochi, Russia at $33 Billion.
  • The most expensive Olympics were held in Beijing in 2008 where they dropped a cool $40 Billion. (I imagine much of that expense was for facilities that did not exist prior to the games).
  • The Royal Canadian Mint extracted gold, silver, and copper from 6.8 TONS of electronic trash headed for the landfill, to make 615 Olympic and 399 Paralympics medals.
  • Today’s Olympic Gold Medals are 92.5% silver (the rest copper), covered with 6 grams of gold plating.
  • The last all-gold medals were made for the winter Olympics in Stockholm—in 1912.

I hope these Winter Olympics are profitable for Canada, and I wish the best of luck to all the participants!

2 thoughts on “Winter Olympics”

  1. Yes, best to the participants, Bob. The facts were great. Thanks. I wasn’t aware that the games cost so much to put on and a 34% in the broadcast rights in four years seems like a hike. But obviously the networks think it will be well worth it–hence, probably a bidding war of sorts. Would the summer Olympics be even higher with possibly a larger viewership? With regards to profitability, have countries lost when putting on the Olympics?
    .-= Judith Ellis´s last blog ..Being Inspired by Others =-.

    1. Judith – I’m sure the summer Olympics would be more costly, because they are bigger events with more participants. But I’m not a big fan of the summer Olympics so I don’t really know.

      With regards to profitability, I seem to recall that most countries do not usually get their cash investment back entirely, but at the same time they benefit greatly by some of the expenditures. For instance; Vancouver spent about $3.8 billion on infrastructure such as mass transit and convention facilities. That will benefit the city for a long time. Plus, I understand there are no rooms available in Vancouver, so the small business shops, restaurants, and the like are certainly benefiting, not to mention the PR benefit for future tourism. I believe, overall, that the Olympic games are a real business benefit to whatever city hosts them (although the $33 Billion for the next winter games in Socchi, Russia–I’m not so sure).

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