Tech and financial service firms were major sponsors of Sydney’s Gay & Lesbian Mardi Gras celebrations that culminated with last Saturday’s parade, one of the largest in the history of the event. The Australia and New Zealand Banking Group (ANZ) was the event’s Principal Partner, and Airbnb, Facebook, Google, and Twitter also served as event sponsors.
To mark the occasion of their 10th year sponsoring Mardi Gras, ANZ revamped its branch along the parade route with LGBT-themed murals and other pieces of art. The branch was also re-branded “GAYNZ,” and again labeled the bank’s ATMs “GAYTMs.” Fees from ATMs will be donated to a charity that provides support to LGBT families. According to Mark Hand, Managing Director, Corporate and Commercial Banking at ANZ, “GAYNZ is often used to describe us at Mardi Gras and we thought transforming the Oxford Street branch and naming it GAYNZ was a fitting way to demonstrate our continued support for the LGBTI community.”
Also providing major sponsorship to the event were Airbnb, Facebook, Google, and Twitter, with Facebook and Twitter becoming sponsors for the first time this year. In a statement to Mashable Australia, Google, which has sponsored Mardi Gras since 2011, wrote that they were sponsors because “our values of tolerance and respect… are universal throughout Google. We believe the diversity of perspectives, ideas, and cultures leads to the creation of better products and services.”