October 19 - The former Rio 2016 marketing team, led by Maggie Sanchez (pictured right with chief executive Leonardo Gryner) who until just days ago was the Organising Committee's chief commercial and marketing director, have shed light on the mysterious circumstances that saw them dismissed from their positions.
Sanchez, along with two of her senior deputies David Alstadter and Rogerio Ludorf, left in what the Rio 2016 leadership described as an "incompatibility of philosophies".
However, in a joint statement to their partners, seen by insidethegames, the trio have aired their side of the story.
"As you have all no doubt heard or been notified by now, we are no longer a part of the Rio 2016 Organising Committee for the Olympic and Paralympic Games," the statement read.
"This is sad for us, as we will not be finishing this great journey with you.
"We are very proud of the outstanding and record breaking work we and our commercial and marketing team have accomplished in building what has been widely recognised by you - the partner community, the IOC (International Olympic Committee) and Rio 2016 leadership, as an outstanding commercial and marketing programme with our innovative 'Aim High' platform."
The statement continues: "We have accomplished many records and successes together, here are but a few: the biggest deal in Olympic history with our Financial Services and Insurance partner, delivering our first partner connection workshop in June 2011 earlier than any other Olympic and Paralympic Organising Committee, and the great feedback for our commercial and marketing programme from the IOC during our IOC Coordination Commission review in June 2011.
"Why the Rio 2016 leadership separated with the three senior and top performing leaders of the commercial and marketing team at the height of its success and during a critical sponsorship phase is an answer that only your heart and experience can help you individually understand.
"They have been quoted as saying: we had 'incompatible philosophies'.
"Here are the principles of our Philosophy...
"• First and foremost, integrity in all we do
"• Holding ourselves accountable to the highest standards, being self-aware, measuring our results to enable us to fine tune and always seeking to develop
"• Adherence to the Olympic values, friendship, respect and excellence and the spirit of Baron de Coubertin's vision for the modern Olympic Games
"• Honest, open and fair business practices and communications, seeking to create win – win situations with maximum return on investment for all stakeholders
"• Utilising Olympic, Paralympic and fortune 500 business best practices to set a new benchmark for delivering the Games
"• Hiring and embracing a team of competent diverse people, and creating a culture of empowerment to ensure scalability, distributed decision making and success
"• Promoting and harnessing the power of diversity - professional backgrounds, nationalities, genders, ages, etc. - to ensure the maximum possibility for new ideas and success
"• Thinking outside the box or paradigm, fostering innovation, taking on challenges and setting big bold goals
"• Recognising and rewarding outstanding individual and team performances
"• Never bowing to adversity and never exalting in triumph
"• Staying humble with our successes, as they are never ours alone, but those of all that we work with and support us
"• Contributing to society in a meaningful way
"We have spent our personal lives and professional careers living, developing and adapting with this philosophy as our guiding principle.
"Indeed, if we have a difference in philosophies with the Rio 2016 leadership, then we are proud to stand by ours."
The statement ends with a personal farewell from Sanchez who says: "One of my favourite quotes from Gandhi is 'Be the change you want to see in the world'.
"Change is often the seed of hope.
"We hope you agree we have demonstrated our willingness to be the change we want to see."