Valerie's medal ceremony a winner, says ANZ

The medal ceremony fireworks on Auckland's waterfront

While some thought ANZ's sponsorship of Valerie Adams' gold medal ceremony was over the top, the bank says it got its money's worth.

The ceremony was heavily criticised for being sponsorship-heavy – the ANZ logo featured prominently on a wall behind the stage, and the company was well-referenced in speeches.

However, bank communications boss Peter Parussini says it was ANZ's event.

The company was already planning to hold a post-Olympics function that night for the athletes and officials, he says.

"The NZ Olympic Committee (NZOC) came to us last week and said, 'Valerie's coming back that day, would you like to do something?'

"We thought we should make it a public ceremony. But because of the short notice, we thought we would have to do it in a place where we could control the crowd, so we did it in the Cloud."

Mr Parussini says from a brand point of view, sponsoring events such as this is a good move.

"It reinforces our relationship with the New Zealand team and Olympians.

He says ANZ spends about $12 million on sponsorships, including the Black Caps, the netball championship and young farmer of the year. 

"When there are multiple media channels and multiple ways people get information, it is important sponsorship is part of that mix.

"It just helps cut through that normal advertising."

The well-publicised event on Wednesday night also provided a modest ratings boost for TV1's Close Up and TV3's Campbell Live programmes, which carried the medal ceremony live.

Close Up pulled 536,000 viewers, up from 516,000 the previous night, while 269,000 people tuned into Campbell Live, up from 210,000 a night earlier.

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ANZ will be laughing all the way to the bank. They really got one over on the drips at ASB who obviously didn't think their sponsorship through and now can only cry about it afterwards. Best you get your donkeys/lawyers to read the fineprint next time Ms Chapman.

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What I found curious was ANZ's complete lack of sponsorship and prominence for the Paralympics, it just shows its all about bang for buck and not about being a true supporter.

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I think it was an insult to the rest of our Olympic team. Valerie is a great, consistent, athelete. ANZ has turned her into a commodity.

There are others in the team whose stories of hard work, difficult backgrounds, overwhelming circumstances, inadequate sponsorships are very inspiring too.

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