Rio Olympics Selling Knockoff Versions Of Its Own Merchandise

In an effort to circumvent efforts by counterfeiters, organizers of the Rio Olympics have created a line of products that are, well, knockoffs of the Games’ official merchandise.

Recognizing that many Brazilians can’t afford to shell out big bucks on merchandise like T-shirts emblazoned with the Olympics logo, organizers have licensed almost identical products — with differences like thinner fabric — at a lower price, Bloomberg reports.

For example: an official tee sold at an Olympics gift store highly trafficked by tourists might cost 95 reais, or $29, while the low-cost version sells for just 40 reais, around $12.25.

Usually, officials at the games have to chase around counterfeiters peddling cheap fakes. But this way, they can compete with them instead, Sylmara Multini, head of licensing at Rio 2016 told Bloomberg.

“The best way to combat piracy is by using product,” Multini said in an interview, adding that the cheaper versions are expected to account for 60% of sales and 40% of revenue. “If you have a 40-real T-shirt, we feel most of the population will be able to engage with our product.”

To Foil Counterfeiters, Rio 2016 Makes Its Own Knockoffs [Bloomberg]

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