GlaxoSmithKline celebrates its role in supporting the biggest anti-doping operation in the history of the Olympic Games

Issued: Monday 16 July 2012, London, UK

GSK launches new advertising campaign to highlight the role that science will play in keeping the London 2012 Games clean

GSK today marks its role as Official Laboratory Services Provider for the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games by launching its first UK advertising campaign to celebrate the role that anti-doping science will play in helping ensure this summer’s Games are the cleanest possible. 

The campaign launches on the day the official London 2012 anti-doping laboratory, provided by GSK in partnership with the London Organising Committee for the Olympic and Paralympic Games (LOCOG) and King’s College London, becomes operational 24 hours a day, seven days a week. More tests will be carried out at the London 2012 lab, based at GSK’s Harlow site, than at any other Games with every medallist and up to 50 per cent of all competing athletes being tested. 

From today, the new campaign, featuring British Olympians and Paralympians including Phillips Idowu, Beth Tweddle, David Weir, Graham Edmunds and Marlon Devonish, will celebrate the motivation and ambition that drives athletes to perform and win drug-free.  The campaign will appear on television and outdoor advertising space across the UK and includes the UK’s largest London2012 outdoor sign, which covers GSK’s Brentford headquarters. 

Phil Thompson, Senior Vice President, Global Communications at GlaxoSmithKline, said: “Our contribution to the London 2012 Games, through our partnership with LOCOG and King’s, is to help ensure that every medal winner can celebrate their athletic achievement in the knowledge they have won through a fair competition. Our advertising campaign aims to showcase the hard work, determination and natural ability that is central to each athlete’s performance.” 

Marlon Devonish, Olympic gold medallist and one of the athletes featured in the campaign, said: “Winning an Olympic medal is the best feeling in the world and as an athlete it’s so important to know that anyone who stands on the podium has got there through their own hard work and dedication, not by doping. The work done by GlaxoSmithKline, LOCOG and King’s to provide the London 2012 anti-doping programme helps to give athletes the assurance that the Games will be fair and athletes are competing clean.” 

Graham Edmunds, Paralympic gold medallist, whose image appears on the side of GSK’s headquarters, said: “Winning medals is like an addiction; once you have one, you want another. It’s my biggest motivation. And knowing you’ve reached the podium because of all the hard work you’ve put in; 9 sessions a week, 2 hours each session, 3 gym sessions a week for four years, is the greatest feeling. I’m confident that everything possible is being done to catch drug cheats at London 2012 and that makes these Games really special.” 

Jonathan Harris, Head of Anti-Doping at The Organising Committee for the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games, said: “The fight against doping within sport continues. GSK have been instrumental in providing services to help us deliver the anti-doping programme for the Games and with their help we have a state of the art laboratory with the ability to process a record number of tests during the Olympic and Paralympic Games.” 

The television advert will first air on the 16 July at 8.45pm BST on ITV and be seen throughout the Games. The outdoor advertising executions will appear from Monday 23 July. 

GlaxoSmithKline
One of the world’s leading research-based pharmaceutical and healthcare companies – is committed to improving the quality of human life by enabling people to do more, feel better and live longer.  For further information please visit www.gsk.com.

Notes to editors

About the London 2012 anti-doping operation:

  • Up to 6250 samples will be tested during Games time – more than any other Games
  • The anti-doping workforce at the Games will include over 1000 people
  • Up to 50 per cent of all competing athletes will be tested at the Olympic Games including every Olympic medallist
  • The laboratory will operate 24 hours a day, 7 days a week during the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games
  • Up to 400 samples will be tested every day
  • The shortest test turnaround will be 24 hours (some tests will take longer)
  • The laboratory is 4400 square metres in size – the same size as 7 tennis courts
  • A team of more than 150 anti-doping scientists from around the world will carry out the testing during Games-time, led by Professor David Cowan from the Drug Control Centre at King’s College London
  • Over 240 prohibited substances will be tested for

About the advertising campaign:

  • The campaign features Olympic and Paralympic athletes Beth Tweddle, David Weir, Graham Edmunds, Phillips Idowu, and Marlon Devonish
  • The campaign will run throughout the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games and include television, print, digital and outdoor signage
  • The building sign is 36 metres wide and 27 metres high making it the biggest London2012 inspired sign in the UK. That makes it wider than the wingspan of a Boeing 737. It sits on the side of GSK’s headquarters in Brentford alongside the M4 and A4 and will welcome millions of people to London as they travel into the capital from Heathrow and the west of England  

Images and film footage:

Images of the advertising campaign are available at http://www.flickr.com/photos/glaxosmithkline/sets/72157630556532696/

View the campaign television advertisement here: https://www.yousendit.com/download/QlVqYUlsaTFqY3BvZE1UQw

GlaxoSmithKline Enquiries:

UK Media enquiries:

Sarah Hornby

+44 (0) 20 8047 5502

(London)

 

Alex Harrison

+44 (0) 20 8047 5502

(London)

 

 

 

 

Blue Rubicon Communications:

 

Andrew Webster

+44 (0) 20 7260 2700

(London)

This press release is intended for business journalists and analysts/investors. Please note that this release may not have been issued in every market in which GSK operates.