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LOCOG want more from lucrative new IOC TV rights

The £1 billion VAT “black hole” in the planning for the London 2012 Olympics might yet be overcome by extra cash from a record-breaking $3.8 billion deal that the International Olympic Committee has signed with international television broadcasters.

The IOC plans to takeover broadcast responsibilities from 2010, when it will effectively assume the role of “host broadcaster”, producing much of the coverage through its Olympic Broadcast Service. The IOC traditionally offered 49 per cent of television revenues to the Games organisers, split two-thirds to the Summer Olympics and one-third to the Winter Games within each Olympiad cycle.

In the meantime, the IOC has been busy negotiating lucrative contracts with broadcasters, signing major contracts in the United States, Canada, Europe (excluding Italy), Korea and in the Middle East for a total of about US$3.8 billion - up by about 30 per cent on the previous Olympic cycle.

John Furlong, the chief executive of the Vancouver 2010 Winter Games organising committee - Vanoc - has confirmed to the Vancouver Sun that his organisation will be going cap in hand to Lausanne seeking a bigger share of television revenues from the international Olympic chiefs.

Sir Craig Reedie, an IOC member and a member of LOCOG, says that London will be watching Vanoc’s progress very carefully.“We are aware, as a board, that the IOC is doing extremely well in broadcast rights,” Sir Craig, the former chairman of the British Olympic Association, said. Sir Craig said he felt it likely that London would be sending a message to the IOC saying, “‘Congratulations, you have done extremely well in your television negotiations, but do you not think the formula you have submitted to us now is slightly unrealistic, and that we should share in some of your largesse?’”

From: London looks to IOC for TV cash boost, Sports Journalists' Association News, 14 11 06

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