LVMH's Paris 2024 Medals Give an (Expensive) Taste of Things to Come

The first luxury sponsor of the Olympic and Paralympic Games put jewelry maker Chaumet on design duty

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As you would expect from any event hosted in Paris, the 2024 Olympic and Paralympic Games are set to be a very chic affair indeed thanks in part to the event’s biggest local sponsor, LVMH.

In 2023 the luxury group was named as premium partner of the Games in a deal reportedly valued at $160 million. Now the business has offered up a taste of what the sponsorship will look like with the unveiling of the official Paris 2024 medals.

The awards were crafted by LVMH-owned luxury jeweler Chaumet, with medals forged using original iron from the Eiffel Tower in Paris. The design pays tribute to the French capital “while echoing the creative codes” of Chaumet, according to LVMH.

The big reveal is the first material glimpse LVMH has given of what its Olympic sponsorship will look like. The world’s largest maker of luxury goods will be calling on each of its “maisons” (design houses) to apply their creative talent to different elements of the event.

Its beauty retailer, Sephora, will help facilitate the Olympic torch relay, while Champagne label Moët Hennessy will supply hospitality venues. Another of its brands, Berluti, will dress French athletes.

Antoine Arnault, LVMH head of image and environment, said the medals were emblematic of LVMH’s role as creative partner to the Games.

“In a close creative dialogue between Paris 2024 and Chaumet, the artisans of the maison delved into their archives and explored powerful symbols of Olympism to imagine a medal inspired by high jewelry creations,” she said.

“Building on its centuries of rich history, Chaumet is writing a new page that will remain engraved in the heritage of the maison for eternity.”

Designing a winner

Chaumet is the first jeweler in the history of the Olympic and Paralympic Games to have designed the medal. It’s not typical for a sponsor to do so, and the final decision ultimately lies with the Organizing Committee.

For Tokyo 2020, homegrown designer Junichi Kawanishi was picked for the honor, while Rio 2016’s medals were sustainably planned by Chelles & Hayashi Design.

This time around, Chaumet wanted to bind together heritage, sports and jewelry-making during the process, and it was inspired by three themes: a hexagon shape (in reference to the shape of France), radiance (noting Paris’ reputation as the City of Lights) and setting (using a claw type typically associated with diamonds). It worked with French athletes to inform its creative choices throughout.

Unlike in previous years, both the Olympic and Paralympic medals share one face, showing the Olympic flame and rings. In a statement announcing the designs, Paris 2024 president Tony Estanguet said this decision represented a “coming together” of the two events.

the gold, silver and bronze medals of the Paris 2024 Olympic Games
The trio of faces that will feature on this year’s Olympic and Paralympic medals.LVMH

The other side of the Olympic medal features Nike, the Greek goddess of victory, depicted against the backdrop of the Acropolis leaving the Panathenaic Stadium, where the first modern Olympics were held in 1896.

For this edition of the Games, Paris 2024 wanted the Eiffel Tower to join the Acropolis, celebrate the event’s return to the French capital a century after the 1924 Summer Olympics.

the back of the three Paris 2024 olympic medals
The view from the rear side of the Olympic 2024 medalLVMH

The back of the Paralympic medals, meanwhile, depicts the view from below the tower as if the athletes are looking up at the famous architecture. On the sides of the Paralympic Games medals, the inscription Paris 2024 is written in universal Braille, a script symbolizing accessibility and a reference to its French inventor, Louis Braille.

The view from the rear side of the Parlympic 2024 medal
The back of the 2024 Paralympic medals.LVMH

A luxury Olympics

The debut of the Olympic medals gives an (expensive) glimpse of what lies ahead from LVMH as it gears up for July’ Olympic’s Opening Ceremony and prepares to bring a host of its luxury brands to 15.3 million spectators on the ground in Paris, as well as the 4 billion viewers expected to tune into broadcasts globally.

LVMH is the only luxury player among the premium partners of Paris 2024. Other sponsors include French bank BPCE, telecommunications company Orange, French energy group EDF, French hypermarket group Carrefour and French pharma giant Sanofi.

Worldwide partners at the International Olympic Committee level include Swiss watchmaker Omega and ecommerce giant Alibaba, and the most recent sign-up AB InBev.

The scale of LVMH’s Olympic partnership represents its firepower and key role in both the French, and global, economy. The conglomerate counts Louis Vuitton, Dior, Loewe, Guerlain and Dom Pérignon among its suite of brands, and ranks first in the European CAC 40 stock market index by market capitalization.

In January 2024, LVMH reported sales of $93.3 billion in 2023, with 13% organic growth from the previous year and showing the resilience of the luxury sector amid a wider economic slowdown.

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