The Price of Olympic Gold
Are Olympic gold medals worth their weight?
Of the 600 grams of metal used to produce a single first place medal, only six grams are pure gold; the remainder is primarily silver.
Therefore, according to reporting by News.com.au, the value of a gold medal is about $680. Had it been made up of purely gold – as they were until 1916 – the price tag would have surpassed $20,000 due to the worth of gold skyrocketing 470 per cent since the 2000 Sydney Games.
"There's a reasonable relationship with gold. It does depend a little bit on supply and demand,” said Fat Prophets senior analyst Greg Fraser to News. “In the past, silver's been in heavy demand for photographic use, but that's disappeared off the scale now and instead it's used mostly for electronics."
Mining company Rio Tinto provided the metal used to produce 4,700 gold, silver and bronze medals for this year’s Olympic and Paralympics Games in London.
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Aligning with London’s aim to host “the most sustainable Games ever,” Rio Tinto’s medal production has received environmental approval and supply chain transparency ‘from mine to medal.’
"Rio Tinto has a long-standing commitment to sustainability and this is a key part of their work with us,” a London 2012 spokesperson informed the UK’s Telegraph.
The mining company, which is headquartered in London but also listed on the Australian Stock Exchange, sources the metal used in their gold, silver and bronze medals from the Kennecott Utah copper mine in the US and the Oyu Tolgoi project in Mongolia. The final products were created by British government-owned Royal Mint and guarded within the Tower of London until the Games kicked off.
Regardless of monetary value, the impacts an Olympic gold medal has on the winning athlete are priceless.
According to Reuters, Olympians who win gold in swimming, track and field, and gymnastics attract the highest amount of sponsor interest and boost their athletic value to seven-figure annual salaries.
"But it really does need to be a gold medal, not a silver or bronze, to have that marketing impact, unless there is an exceptional story behind the athlete,” said Peter Carlisle, managing director of Olympics and Action Sports.
Timeline: India takes unicorn leap with six in five days
We chart an historic week in India’s tech industry, where in just five days, between 5-9 April 2021, the country achieved six new unicorns, bringing India’s total to 10 in 2021 to date, an immense unicorn leap from just seven in 2020 and six in 2019.
April 5: Meesho
India’s first social commerce unicorn, Meesho raised US$300m from SoftBank, Facebook and Shunwei Capital, giving the Bangalore-based startup a US$2.1bn valuation, a threefold jump from its previous funding round in 2019. Founded in 2015 by two IIT-Delhi graduates, Meesho connects producers and resellers, helping small businesses sell through social media. It has 45m customers and has enabled 13m entrepreneurs to start their online businesses with no investment.
April 6: CRED
Founded just over two years ago, Bangalore-based credit card repayment app CRED raised US$215m from Falcon Edge Capital and Coatue, nearly trebling its valuation to US$2.2bn from its January US$80m round. Allowing customers to pay off their credit card debt while earning CRED coins which they cash in for rewards, CRED has grown rapidly during COVID-19, doubling its customer base to nearly 6 million in a year.
April 7: API Holdings / Groww
The first epharmacy startup to gain unicorn status, PharmEasy (API Holdings), which has digitised 60,000 brick and mortar pharmacies and 400 doctors across India, raised US$350m in a round led by Prosus Ventures. Founded by four former Flipkart employees as a way of making investing simple, investment platform Groww became India’s second-youngest fintech unicorn, raising US$83m in Series D funding led by Tiger Global, quadrupling its previous round in September.
April 8: ShareChat
New Delhi-grown social media startup ShareChat, founded in 2016 by Mohalla Tech raised US$502m from Lightspeed Ventures, Tiger Global, Twitter and Snap taking its raised total over six rounds to US$766m and pushing its valuation to US$2.1bn. The funding will be used to grow its user base and short video platform Moj, which launched in 2020 following TikTok’s ban in India. The regional language startup claims 280m users.
April 9: Gupshup
AI-led conversational message startup joined the unicorn club after raising US$100m from Tiger Global giving it a ten-fold valuation of US$1.4bn. The smart messaging platform, which has seen accelerated growth during the pandemic, was founded in Bangalore in 2005 by serial entrepreneur Beerud Sheth, whose online freelancing platform Elance is now listed. Gupshup’s API enables 100,000+ businesses to build messaging and conversation experiences across 30+ communication channels.