How can a bright yellow cat be worth $400 million? The mascots of the Rio 2016 Olympics, left, and Paralympic Games make their first official appearance in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. The smiley-faced mascot represents the animal life of Brazil while the mascot for the Paralympics is a mopped-headed doll with leafy hair, meant to represent the vast diversity of the plant life in Brazil (AP photos)
How can a bright yellow cat be worth $400 million?
Lexile

A bright yellow cat-like figure is the mascot of the 2016 Olympics in Rio de Janeiro.

The smiley-faced mascot represents the animal life of Brazil. The mascot for the Paralympics is a mopped-headed doll with leafy hair, meant to represent the vast diversity of the flora in Brazil.

A public poll will be conducted to name the two mascots from a shortlist of possibilities.

Organizers hope to raise $400 million from branded merchandise. Income from merchandising makes up a big chunk of the $3 billion operating budget, of which half is to come from the sale of local sponsorships.

The Olympic merchandising campaign will comprise about 12,000 products aimed mostly at children.

"Our expectation is that the mascots will represent 25 percent of our (merchandising) business," Slymara Mutini, head of licensing, told The Associated Press.

"We are all very, very excited about the mascots, and we truly believe that's an achievable goal. And we might even surpass it."

The mascot for this year's World Cup soccer tournament in Brazil an armadillo named Fuleco generated little interest. Some blamed this on pre-World Cup protests, and repeated delays and distractions in preparing venues.

In addition to the operating budget, Rio is spending about $20 billion in a mix of private and public money to prepare sports venues and urban infrastructure. Brazil spent about $15 billion on the World Cup.

Critical thinking challenge: Why is it important to raise money from branded merchandise?

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COMMENTS (24)
  • 5SethM
    11/25/2014 - 05:32 p.m.

    It is important to raise money from branded merchandise because there are operating expenses. Of the money, $3 million goes to an operating budget. But if $3 million is needed to operate the Olympics, then why do they need $400 million? It's all about making money. Sometimes the money means more than the actual Olympics.

  • TF00Music
    11/26/2014 - 08:39 a.m.

    Its important to raise money from branded merchandise because if they want the Olympics to be big, they have to raise money for it to be something like you'll never forget. And it takes a lot of money to do that.

  • ws2001wrex
    11/26/2014 - 08:43 a.m.

    Its important to rise money for brand merchandise because, it will help out that company which in turn can help out people that need help like: the homeless, poor, hungry and more. So buying merchandise will help out people.

  • Reemap-Lam
    11/26/2014 - 11:39 a.m.

    I think the mascots are extremely cute! In my opinion I think they will get a lot of money from this. They are aiming to get kids to buy it and the design makes them really cute so kids will want them. Overall I think that kids will buy the merchandise and they will be able to reach their goal of $400 million.

  • Hansd-Lam
    11/26/2014 - 01:28 p.m.

    I thought this article was kind of cool because I'm from Brazil and I dint know that the mascot was going to be like a yellow cat. Also from what I have heard from my parents brazils economy isn't the greatest right now because they have spent too much money on the world cu. But I'm looking forward too watching the Olympics.

  • Connors-Lam
    11/26/2014 - 02:25 p.m.

    I think that these mascots are really cool looking and fit the whole Brazil theme I also think that this is a great way/idea to boost Brazil's economy

  • Eastinb-Lam
    11/26/2014 - 02:30 p.m.

    I think it's really interesting how much money a world cup mascot would be able to generate. The world cup is one of the more well known tournaments around the world but if the mascot for this year's world cup wasn't very popular the one for 2016 may be the same. Even if it is really popular, $400 million is an incredible amount of money. FIFA, who sponsors the world cup, must be a very successful business.

  • Eastinb-Lam
    11/26/2014 - 02:34 p.m.

    I think it's really interesting how much money a mascot would be able to generate. if the mascot for this year's wasn't very popular tho, the one for 2016 may be the same wouldn't it? Even if it is really popular, $400 million is an incredible amount of money. The Olympics must be very successful to expect that much from just one mascot's merchandise.

  • GrantW-2
    11/28/2014 - 01:04 p.m.

    This article is about how a mascot for the Olympics could be worth $400,000. The mascot is expected to be on a ton of merchandise and is expected to make 25% of the revenue. The mascot is a yellow fox-like creature that is supposed to represent animal life in Brazil. I like this article because I am excited for the Olympics.

  • JacobM-5
    12/01/2014 - 12:05 a.m.

    This article is about a mascot that is worth millions. The article talks about how the mascot of a yellow cat could make as much as 400 million dollars or more. This mascot will be the representative of the 2016 summer olympics. I think this article is shocking on how much one thing can make.

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