IOC Appoints Marketing Chief

BOSTON Timo Lumme today was named marketing director by the International Olympic Committee, according to the IOC. He starts the job in November.

Lumme, 43, a native of Finland, joins from Bristol, Conn.-based cable sports network ESPN, where he has been vice president of European, Middle Eastern and African operations since 2001.

In 2002, he oversaw the launch of the first ESPN-branded channel in Europe, ESPN Classic Sports. Prior to joining the network, he spent three years as a European marketing director for Nike.

Lumme succeeds 15-year IOC staffer Michael Payne, who resigned in December. Following the upcoming Athens Olympics, Payne will work as special advisor to Formula One racing.

Christopher Reeve, Nelson Mandela and Kofi Annan are among the iconic figures who serve as brand ambassadors in Saatchi & Saatchi’s first work for the IOC. TV spots broke in May on global networks that will air the Games, which begin Aug. 13 [Adweek, May 10].

The tagline, “Celebrate humanity,” carries over from the work of previous shop TBWA Worldwide, but Saatchi presents it in a cursive typeface that evokes a more personal touch. The ads will run in up to 200 countries. The networks run them as part of their contracts to carry the Games; were the media paid, it would be worth some $100 million globally, sources said.

—Adweek staff report