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NAGANO OLYMPIC ORGANIZERS LOWERING SPONSORSHIP CRITERIA

     Sources at the Nagano Winter Games Organizing Committee say
the NAOC plans to ask the IOC for authority to launch an
"official supplier" program in order to attract less wealthy
sponsors in Japan, according to KYODO NEWS.  The new program
would offer limited rights to domestic companies who want to
associate their products and services with the '98 Games for a
one-time fee of under 1 billion yen.  This is about half of what
is paid under the "Golden Sponsor" program which so far has only
six Japanese participants -- Mizuno, Hichijuni Bank, Hattori
Seiko, Kirin Brewery, NTT and KDD.  NAOC sources say a Japanese
automaker will sign as the 7th company, but organizers doubt they
can meet their ten-company goal.  NAOC has so far secured half of
the projected 32 billion yen in marketing revenue (KYODO NEWS,
12/4).
     MORE NAGANO NEWS:  Nagano organizers received "top grades"
from the IOC on facilities planned for '98.  The IOC also
ratified a decision to add snowboarding as an official event
(KYODO NEWS SERVICE, 12/5).
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