“I need to emphasize that those partners and companies have been very supportive to Tokyo 2020. They are passionate about making these Games happen.”
Toyota Motor Corp. signed on as a worldwide Olympic sponsor in 2015, in an 8-year deal reportedly worth nearly $1 billion, becoming the first car company to join the IOC’s top-tier marketing program.
The sponsorship, which started globally in 2017, runs through the 2024 Olympics, covering three consecutive Olympics in Asia, including the Tokyo Games.
The Tokyo Olympics, already delayed by a year, are going ahead despite the Japanese capital being under a state of emergency.
It’s already virtually a made-for-TV Olympics with most events, including the opening ceremony, going ahead without fans in the venues. Some dignitaries, such as IOC President Thomas Bach and Emperor Naruhito, are likely to attend.
Toyota is one of the most trusted brands in Japan. The maker of the Prius hybrid and Lexus luxury models prides itself on its quality controls, with its “just in time” super-efficient production methods praised and emulated around the world.
Public opinion surveys reflect widespread concern among Japanese people about having tens of thousands of Olympic participants enter the country during a pandemic. Some already have tested positive for COVID.