International public relations firm Ketchum has been hired to provide support to Rome’s bid for the 2024 Olympic and Paralympic Games. The struck contract is set to run throughout the campaign, until the International Olympic Committee (IOC) elects a winning candidate September 13, 2017 from among Los Angeles, Paris and Budapest.
Ketchum was appointed after Rome 2024 conducted a global search and vetted five international agencies and “is expected to directly involve international journalists and opinion leaders in the Olympic sphere,” according to the bid.
David Gallagher, CEO of Ketchum London said “we will rally international support for Rome in demonstrating how this ancient global city will enrich the Games. By evidencing the meticulous planning behind their infrastructure business case, and by sharing the story of the city’s unmatched hospitality and magic, our global team will deliver a real-time integrated campaign.”
Rome 2024 said Ketchum is “widely acknowledged for its substantial track record of sports and large-scale events comms.” Ketchum Sports and Entertainment has worked on Olympic Games projects for more than 20 years, working with the IOC, National Olympic Committees and Organizing Committees Olympic Games on every Games since Barcelona in 1992.
Ketchum provided assistance to the London 2012 Games.
Rome’s bid is facing an uphill battle as Olympic bid opponent Virginia Raggi is expected to be elected Mayor of the the city this Sunday, putting it at risk. Italy’s Radical Party is currently collecting signatures to endorse a referendum questioning the bid that will force Olympic proponents to further rally domestic support and Ketchum to manage the message worldwide.
Rome was forced to withdraw from its 2020 Olympic bid after losing federal support, and previously lost a 2004 campaign to Athens. The Italian capital last hosted the Games in 1960.