Sponsor Pins – Early Sightings


Even though we are over 3 years away from the Games, there are a handful of sponsor pins available for Tokyo 2020.

There are various level of sponsors attached to an Olympic and/or Paralympic games. Each level permits the sponsor different rights to use logos, names and wording on their pins. Some companies sponsor the Olympic Games generically (Coca Cola, McDonalds etc.) whilst others sponsor a specific Games.

A full list of Tokyo 2020 sponsors and their levels can be found on the official Games website

Scanning eBay, I have found the following pins…

There are a selection from McDonalds, Canon, Nomura, Nissan, Nissin, Daiwa House and NTT Communications.

Interestingly, looking at the official Tokyo 2020 website, I can not see Nissan as a sponsor of the the Games, as it appears that Toyota have the vehicle sponsorship deal. If anyone can shed any light on the role Nissan are playing in the Olympic Games, please post a comment.

It’s also worth noting that some of the sponsors are issuing their pins with both Olympic and Paralympic Games logos where their sponsorship covers both Games. Perhaps a way of symbolising the equity of the sponsorship or perhaps a cost cutting measure to only issue a single pin?

Applicant and Candidate Pins

The first pins to talk about are those issued BEFORE Tokyo was awarded the Games back in Bueno Aires in September 2013.

A brief explanation for those that didn’t know…

When a city looks to host the Olympic and Paralympic Games, they put together their plans or ‘bid’ and submit them to the governing bodies for consideration. At this time the city is known as an APPLICANT.

If the city’s bid is considered one of the best it has passed the initial round and then is asked to produce more information before a final decision is reached. At this point the city is known as a CANDIDATE CITY.

During this time, the bid committee will design a logo which they use to promote their bid. This logo is not the Games-time logo. Bid cities may not use the Olympic or Paralympic logos, however, candidate cities may.

Tokyo’s bid logo was revealed in November 2011 and consisted of a circle of cherry blossoms.

I have found a number of bid and applicant pins across the internet and show them below (photo credit indicate where I have found pins belonging to others).

There seems to be no consistent numbering convention for Tokyo 2020 pins at this point, so for ease of discussion I have created my own

Each pin number consists of three parts…

  • ‘TP’ to indicate that the reference is unique to TokyoPins.
  • A letter to indicate the type of pin – ‘B’ for bid, ‘S’ for sponsor (these will evolve).
  • A sequential number to provide a unique reference

The numbering used for these bid pins is completely arbitrary and I chose to list the applicant pins before the candidate pins as that is their chronological order.

Welcome to Tokyo Pins

Hello fellow Olympic and Paralympic pin collectors. Welcome to my new website.

Over the next three (and a bit years), I hope to provide a central focus for pin collectors interested in the Tokyo 2020 Olympic and Paralympic Games.

I created a website for London 2012 which was popular with collectors as it listed all the pins issued in a form of a multi-section catalogue. I don’t plan anything so comprehensive for Tokyo 2020, but simply hope to provide a news feed based on information I find or, hopefully, you all send me to share with other collectors.

This website is not-for-profit and does not aim to sell anything. If it leads to some pin swapping and pin meets, then it will have done its job.

It can only be successful if collectors take part and share news, so please get involved. You’ll find Tokyo Pins on Facebook and Twitter as well as the website, so please get in touch.