InfrontRingier, the Infront agency’s joint venture with Swiss media company Ringier, has been appointed as the exclusive marketing partner for a bid by Sion, Switzerland, to host the 2026 Winter Olympic and Paralympic Games.
InfrontRingier will work to find partners to support Sion’s bid, and would also become a project partner of Swiss Olympic upon successful completion of the campaign.
The first stage of the candidacy process for the 2026 event begins on 10th June, when the canton of Valais will vote on the proposal. If locals then vote in favour of the bid, the project will be taken to the National Council and the Council of States to receive approval.
If both committees accept the bid, Sion will become the official candidate for the Games, pending a final decision by the International Olympic Committee (IOC) in the autumn of 2019.
The Swiss government gave its backing to Sion’s proposed bid in October, and pledged up to US$1.1 billion in support.
Switzerland’s proposed bid from St Moritz/Davos was rejected by a local referendum. The country has hosted the Winter Olympics on two occasions, with St Moritz staging both the 1928 and 1948 editions.
Jürg Stahl, president of Swiss Olympic, said: "Switzerland will benefit from the Olympic Games in Sion in 2026 for decades in a wide range of areas, such as sports and innovation. At the same time, with Sion 2026 we can spread the Olympic spirit and prove that even an event of this size can be sustainably organised. In order to make this project successful, we need to rely on strong partners and with InfrontRingier we have found the ideal solution."
Martin Blaser, managing director of InfrontRingier, added: "We look forward to being part of another chapter of Swiss Olympic history as part of the partnership with Swiss Olympic. I am confident we will be able to capitalise on our activation expertise."