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The Olympics will remain on NBC through 2032

The 2012 London Summer Games averaged 31.1 million viewers for NBC.
The 2012 London Summer Games averaged 31.1 million viewers for NBC.
Courtesy NBC Sports

The Olympic Games will stay on NBC-owned networks through 2032. The peacock signed an agreement with the International Olympic Committee to extend its current contract for another 11 years.

It adds the 2024, 2028, and 2032 Summer Games, as well as the 2022, 2026, and 2030 Winter Games. The existing deal was only through the 2020 Summer Games in Tokyo.

NBC paid $7.65 billion for the extension, plus an additional $100 million signing bonus to be used for the promotion of Olympic values. It’s already paying $1.23 billion for the 2016 Summer Games in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.

Why? Well, this winter’s Sochi games averaged 21.4 million viewers for NBC while the 2012 London Summer Games averaged 31.1 million.

What’s interesting is that NBC is willing to shell out a significant amount of “gold” for games that haven’t been assigned a locale yet, and that the IOC is moving ahead with TV contracts while struggling to get cities to bid for these future games. The fact that the Sochi Games cost $51 billion has resulted in a dearth of cities willing to show interest in hosting the games NBC just added.

Does NBC’s gambit increase the chances that a US city will get to host one of those games? The IOC wouldn’t answer. The last US-hosted Olympics were the 2002 Winter Games in Salt Lake City. The next Olympics up for bidding are the 2022 Winter Games, though the US Olympic Committee is focused on the 2024 Summer Games.

So we don’t know where any of the Games beyond 2020 will be held, but we do know that where ever they are, Bob Costas and company will be there too. And also a lot of stuff will be tape delayed. Can’t wait.


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