In Depth

NBC Olympic Merchandise a Hot Seller

The halo effect of the Summer Games has bolstered more than NBC’s ratings.

NBC Universal’s online outlet,, also is feeling the love from a sales spike of Olympics merchandise.

For the first 12 days of the Beijing Games, sales were up 49% from those during the first 12 days of the 2006 Winter Games in Turin, Italy.

In addition, total online store visits were up 48% and sales of specific items are up as much as 105% for the period.

“The Beijing Games have captured the public’s imagination, and their interest in the Games is sparking very strong sales,” said Jeffrey Rotenberg, director of NBC Universal Retail Operations. “People want to own a part of the Games, and what better way to remember the excitement than to have a collectible pin, a DVD or a splashy windbreaker as seen on the athletes?”
Items in demand include collectible Charles Fazzino Olympics pins, the Ralph Lauren driving cap, a DVD of the spectacular Opening Ceremonies, the “swimmers shirt” and the Nike apparel, including T-shirts and the men’s and women’s windbreakers, that have been seen most often on gymnasts as they stand on the medal platforms.

The NBC online store already is preparing for Vancouver product, which should be available by this holiday season, although the Vancouver Winter Olympic Games don’t begin until February 2010.