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  • U.S. Olympic Network Talks; Joint-Bid for Canadian Rights; Munich Sponsorships


    (ATR) The U.S. Olympic Committee has not shelved its plans for an Olympic cable television network.

    Scott Blackmun, CEO of the USOC, said at the Reuters Global Media Summit in New York that the U.S. Olympic Network could be part of larger discussions with the IOC next year as they try to work out revenue sharing disagreements.

    "Inevitably when we sit down to talk to the IOC about revenue sharing, this would have to be something we discuss as well," Blackmun said. "There are a lot of people in the IOC who understand the value a network can bring."

    Blackmun said the USOC also wants to reopen talks with Comcast about the network once it finishes its purchase of longtime Olympic broadcaster NBC. The media giant had agreed to partner with the USOC on the network before the plans were dropped amid opposition from the IOC, which was angry it had not been consulted.

    "In order to successfully launch a network we would need the IOC as a partner and a supporter in the endeavor," Blackmun said. "Now, whether that means financial participation or some other kind of participation I really can't say. But I think we would have a much more successful launch if they were involved."

    While Blackmun mentioned Comcast by name, talks with the new owner of NBC could be moot if one of NBC’s rivals snatches the U.S. rights for the 2014 and 2016 Olympics. The IOC is expected to seek bids for those rights in 2011. NBC, CBS, Fox and ABC/ESPN have all indicated an interest in bidding.

    On Tuesday, ESPN President George Bodenheimer said the network is still considering bidding for Olympic broadcast rights. However, Bodenheimer said "it needs to be done in a manner that makes financial sense."

    ESPN also has the rights for the 2014 World Cup and “will compete vigorously” for the 2018 and 2022 World Cup rights as well.

    Rivals Bidding for Canadian Broadcast Rights

    Canadian broadcasting giants Rogers and CTVglobemedia hope to repeat the success of the 2010 Olympics, and will make a joint bid for the Olympic broadcasting rights for the 2014 and 2016 Olympics.

    A spokeswoman for the consortium was quoted by Canadian media saying "Vancouver 2010 was such an unprecedented experience, that we'd be remiss not to have discussions for future bids. Each new set of Games brings a new set of opportunities, and we will evaluate accordingly."

    The consortium, formally known as the Olympic Broadcast Media Consortium, will broadcast the 2012 Games as well.
    Public broadcaster CBC has traditionally broadcast the Games and is expected to bid for the 2014 and 2016 Olympics.

    Munich Gains Five Partners

    Five companies have become “Friends” of the Munich 2018 bid.
    Coin dealer MDM presented Munich 2018 with three special Olympic coins to celebrate becoming a sponsor of the bid. (Munich 2018)

    Ski maker Volkl, coin dealer MDM, online video platform strem5, Neumann & muller Event technology and the Riessersee Hotel Sport & Spa Resort have partnered with the bid.

    “The level of backing for the bid is continually increasing and we are gaining support from businesses nationwide where every level of the German business community is united in support of the Winter Games in 2018,” Bernhard Schwank, Munich 2018 Bid Committee CEO, said in a press release.

    MDM presented Munich 2018 with three silver coins with Munich Olympic Park, the Olympic Hill and the Konigssee Sliding Center featured on them. The company also created a special edition coin for the 1972 Olympics.

    Munich 2018 now has 16 corporate partners.


    ...French bank Societe Generale has joined on as a partner of Rugby World Cup Limited for the 2011 Rugby World Cup in New Zealand, and the 2015 Rugby World Cup in England. The firm will be the official bank for the 2011 RWC which will be held Sept. 9 – Oct. 23, 2011.

    ...Condos from the converted Vancouver Olympic Village will go on sale Feb. 12, 2011, the one year anniversary of the Games.

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    With reporting from Isia Reaves Wilcox

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