McDonald’s Australia ends partnership with the AOC as brand pulls out of Olympics globally

McDonald’s Australia has brought its long-running partnership with the Australian Olympic Committee to an abrupt end after the global fast-food giant announced its was parting ways with the International Olympic Committee over the weekend.


The AOC website promotes the McDonald’s partnership running through to 2020

McDonald’s Australian confirmed to Mumbrella that the global edict would be effective immediately in Australia, despite the AOC having a deal with McDonald’s through to the 2020 Tokyo games.

A spokesperson for the AOC said the the end of the local agreement was in line with the global edict.

In a statement, McDonald’s said the decision to end the partnership with the IOC had been mutual.

“McDonald’s and the IOC have mutually agreed to end our worldwide TOP Partnership (The Olympic Partner Programme),” McDonald’s global chief marketing officer Silvia Lagnado said.

“As part of our global growth plan, we are reconsidering all aspects of our business and have made this decision in cooperation with the IOC to focus on different priorities. We have been proud to support the Olympic Movement, and we thank our customers and staff, the spectators, athletes and officials, as well as the IOC and local Olympics Games organising  committees, for all of their support over the years.”

The IOC said there were no plans to replace McDonald’s in the category.

“In today’s rapidly evolving business landscape, we understand that McDonald’s is looking to focus on different business priorities. For these reasons, we have mutually agreed with McDonald’s to part ways,” Timo Lumme, the IOC’s managing director of television and marketing services said.

The restaurants’ final connection with the games will be the completion of its local sponsorship of the Winter Games in Korea next year where it will have restaurants in the Olympic village.

In 2016, McDonalds focused its Olympics campaign on the fans, highlighting those making a run for a snack before they settled in to watch Australian athletes vie for gold.

The company also created ads celebrating the “Olympian” skills of its workers.

In 2012, with the games in London, ads featured the battle between a father and his son as the boy tried to stay up late to watch the games.

The father eventually capitulates and surprises his son with a McDonald’s snack while they watch the games together.

Mumbrella’s Sports Marketing Summit, being held in Sydney on Wednesday 21 June, will discuss a range of issues including Brand Storytelling Through The Power of Live Sport and How to Tell You’re Getting Value From Your Sponsorship. For more information, or to grab a last-minute ticket, click here



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