The International Olympic Committee (IOC) and Alibaba founder Jack Ma announced on Thursday a partnership in which the organisers of the Olympic Games will rely on the Chinese e-commerce titan for a digital upgrade.
The partnership was announced at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, by Ma and IOC President Thomas Bach, who said the plan would give the Olympics a more modern face that would carry the IOC “into the digital age”.
Thomas Bach, President of the IOC, said: “In this new digital world, Alibaba is uniquely positioned to help the IOC achieve a variety of key objectives outlined in Olympic Agenda 2020, while positively shaping the future of the Olympic Movement. This is a ground-breaking, innovative alliance, and will help drive efficiencies in the organisation of the Olympic Games through 2028, whilst also supporting the global development of digital opportunities including the Olympic Channel.”
“Alibaba’s partnership with the IOC is built on a foundation of shared values and a common vision for connecting the world and enriching people’s lives,” said Jack Ma, Founder and Executive Chairman of Alibaba Group. “We are proud to support Olympic Agenda 2020, using our innovations and technologies to help evolve the Olympic Games for the digital era.”
Additionally, Alibaba will support the organizers of each edition of the Olympic Games, as well as the Olympic Movement, around the world through advertising and promotional use of Olympic marks and imagery as well as marks from the National Olympic Committees.
“Alibaba is proud to empower the International Olympic Committee in a game-changing digital transformation, while moving another step closer toward our goal to serve two billion consumers,” said Daniel Zhang, chief executive officer, Alibaba Group. “We will leverage our experience in serving a young user base to help connect more young people to the Olympic Movement, helping to strengthen our brand through this historic partnership.”
Alibaba is the first company to secure a long-term commitment to the IOC through 2028 and the first Chinese company to commit to the Olympic Winter Games Beijing 2022.