NBC Rakes in $1 Billion for Olympics

With a global audience, the Olympic Games are a great venue to advertise from and big networks are more than ready to accommodate.

NBC recently stated that it has surpassed the $1 billion threshold for advertising revenue for Olympic Games, which start this week in London.

The cost of advertising time per minute on NBC's prime-time broadcast has increased by less than 10 percent, Seth Winter, executive vice president of sales for the NBC Sports Group, stated. He further added that the telecast is where NBC makes most of its money and it is what draws the largest audience.

But, the television audiences are shifting to a more fractured structure, leaving executives to figure how to reach such a large swath of people. The online advertising market continues to grow for the 2012 games, and NBC reported that it made $60 million in digital ad sales- more than triple what the Beijing games brought in.

"Everyone who is on the air or wants to be on the air in the third quarter has to be on the Olympics," Winter said. "If they want to reach the audience they want to reach, we're in the position of having the most enviable platform in all of media."

Ad revenue for these games surpassed the $850 million made in ad sales for the games four years ago and is also the most anyone has ever made for the Olympics, according to NBC.

NBC Universal is broadcasting a record 5,535 hours of the Olympics across several channels including NBC, Telemundo and affiliates like MSNBC, CNBC and the NBC Sports Group as well as online.

While crossing the $1 billion mark for these games is a first, it still doesn't mean that NBC Universal will still turn a profit. NBC has cited the high costs of doing business in London and has stated that it expects to lose money presenting the coverage.