Olympic Games boost cheers Chime's profits

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The Independent Online

The Olympics have been a boon to the advertising and marketing group Chime Communications as operating profits at its sports division surged by more than two thirds.

"As a TV event around the world, it's never been bettered," said chief executive Chris Satterthwaite, whose company worked for 15 sponsors including BT, BP and G4S at the Games.

Although advertising in the UK failed to get a lift because the Games were broadcast on the BBC, Chime's sports marketing arm arranged corporate hospitality for 40,000 guests and provided in-stadium entertainment such as videos and warm-up acts for organisers Locog.

Mr Satterthwaite said that this showed it was right for Chime, which also owns the Compare the Market meerkat ad agency VCCP, to focus more on sports marketing and advertising, after the sale of its controversial public relations business Bell Pottinger in June.

Half-year profits rose by nearly 50 per cent on a headline basis, but once Bell Pottinger's results are included, pre-tax profit fell 41 per cent to £6.7m, partly because the PR firm made a small loss.

Bell Pottinger, which has been bought out by co-founder Lord Bell, suffered after it lost a big US contract and lobbyists were caught on camera boasting about their access in Whitehall.