Brazilian Olympic Act: a last minute hurdle for ambushers
08 July 2016
With the Rio Olympic Games just around the corner, there have been concerns about the country’s readiness to play host to the competition, its athletes and scores of fans. Issues around stadium safety and anti-doping policies have been at the forefront of the debate, but there has also been, until very recently, a distinct lack of clarity for brands and sponsors planning marketing activities in Brazil in the lead up to the Games.
We are all hoping that a classic festival-style Opening Ceremony on August 5th will kick off two weeks of incredible sport and that all the recent negative headlines will quickly fade from memory.
But the Rio 2016 organising committee have certainly cut it fine in many regards, including in addressing the perennial thorn in the Olympic side – ambush marketing. Whereas, ahead of the London 2012 Games, the UK government enacted legislation six years in advance to prevent ambush at the Games, similar legislation in Brazil, the “Rio Olympic Act” only took effect in May 2016, to little or no fanfare. There was no official press release and no guidelines issued. At the date of writing, the most readily available official guide to brand protection at the 2016 Games is dated January 2014 and doesn’t reflect the new legislation.
This article seeks to give international businesses planning on marketing their brands in Brazil in the next few weeks an oversight of the new Brazilian legislation.
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