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SBD Global/June 21, 2012/Olympics

LOCOG To Auction Off Olympic Torches To Offset Games Costs

LOCOG will try to offset Olympics costs by auctioning off torches.
Olympic organizers have "jumped on the memorabilia bandwagon," following in the footsteps of genuine torchbearers by selling their torches on eBay for thousands of pounds, according to Jacqueline Magnay of the London TELEGRAPH. But LOCOG said that "other sporting items will follow" including the tennis balls used at the Olympic tournament at Wimbledon and the relay batons from athletics events. LOCOG already has two pages of framed autographed photographs of Games Chair Sebastian Coe, rower Steve Redgrave and athletes Daley Thompson and Dame Kelly Holmes up for auction on its site. Townsend said this release of "authentic London 2012 torches would help subsidise the cost of the torches and contribute toward the staging of the Games" (TELEGRAPH, 6/20).

HOT SELLER: Meanwhile, REUTERS' Keith Weir reported that an Olympic torch carried by footballer David Beckham has "attracted bids" of more than £1,500 ($2,300). Organizers said the funds raised "would help to offset the cost of the torch relay and of staging the Games themselves." Organizers denied that the website "was set up in response to some participants selling their torches on the eBay auction website" (REUTERS, 6/20).
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