NBC Sports is likely close to selling $1 billion in Paris Olympics ads

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NBC Sports has suggested it close to reaching $1 billion in ad sales for the 2024 Paris Summer Olympics.

While the network did not reveal exact figures, multiple sources have said that it is nearly the $1 billion mark.

NBC also says it is close to selling out of ad inventory for the both the live broadcast of the opening ceremony as well as the later primetime version, which NBC will edit and enhance in the hours between the two airings.

Other major sponsorships are also close to selling out, including halftime placements during sports such as basketball and soccer.

For Paris, NBC introduced a new format during select events that let a single advertiser pay for a 30-minute block. This package includes a 60-second ad that will air in a box next to a view from the event venue. No other ads or advertisers, with the exception of possible venue signage, will appear during these slots.

NBC’s sales team has been offering incentives, including selling packages for less than $100,000 on digital up through nine-figures for top deals.

Assuming NBC is nearly the $1 billion mark, that still puts it slightly shy of the estimate $1.25 billion it sold during the delayed 2020 Olympics in Tokyo that ended up airing in 2021 due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

In 2014, NBCU signed a $7.75 billion deal with the International Olympics Committee to continue as the exclusive U.S. rights holder through 2032. It had been the exclusive one since 2000.

That price essentially. means that NBC is paying around $861 million per Olympics, though the cost isn’t necessarily broken down evenly.

Using that rough figure, NBC would need to keep production costs around $200 million or so to still be able to make a profit from its coverage. NBC and its other networks also benefit financially from other aspects of its rights deal, including the ability to promote its own programming during broadcasts.

On the whole, NBC has seen interest in the Olympics decline over the years, though it still is a very popular viewing destination. The network’s moves to stream coverage on Peacock and other platforms has been key to giving viewers more choices as to where to view the events — and ultimately generate more ad revenue.