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Volume 10 No. 25


Britain’s Olympic and Paralympic sports are "pooling their commercial rights into an independent company" that will market them collectively, hoping to make it easier for potential sponsors to buy into the post-games feelgood factor, according to Roger Blitz of the FINANCIAL TIMES. About 80 sports governing bodies and related sports organizations, including the British Olympic Association, have "agreed to collaborate on rights deals rather than compete with each other for corporate backers." The idea of a not-for-profit British Sports Marketing Bureau is the brainchild of LOCOG Chair Keith Mills and is the "first initiative since the Olympics" to capitalize on the success of the Games. Mills said, "We want to capitalise on the back of the Games. We worry about losing the momentum of the Olympics." Creating the BSMB is a response to several companies which said that they "found the sports rights market confusing and ill-suited to their needs." It will act as a broker "offering companies a menu of commercial rights more geared toward their target markets" (FINANCIAL TIMES, 9/28).

Security firm G4S CEO Nick Buckles has "survived calls for him to resign following the company's failure to provide enough guards to secure" the London Games, according to Rupert Neate of the London GUARDIAN. G4S said on Friday that it would keep Buckles in the top job despite his acknowledgement to MPs that the staffing crisis had been a "humiliating shambles." While Buckles will be retained in his £830,000-a-year job ($1.3M), two of his lieutenants "have walked the plank." G4S COO David Taylor-Smith and Global Events Division Managing Dir Ian Horseman Sewell resigned over the "major failings" that forced the government to call in the army to provide security staff for the Games. Some analysts "were not satisfied with the departure of the two lower-ranking execs." Investment firm Seymour Pierce Analyst Kevin Lapwood said,  "Are we surprised that Buckles hasn't gone? Frankly, yes. Does it draw a line under the whole affair? I don't think it does." Home Affairs Select Committee Chair Keith Vaz, said Taylor-Smith and Horseman Sewell had paid the "ultimate price" by resigning but said it was "not the end of the matter." He said on his Twitter account, "It's not closure. They must waive their fee and pay compensation" (GUARDIAN, 9/28). In London, Plimmer & Warrell & Wembridge reported that G4S appointed Head of Care and Justice Services Richard Morris as the company's U.K. CEO, a move that will "reassure the government over its ability to handle future contracts." Group Managing Dir Kim Challis has "become responsible for all government business." The company is already searching for two additional non-execs and a full-time COO, who "will be recruited from outside the organisation" (FINANCIAL TIMES, 9/28).

The IOC Coordination Commission for the Nanjing 2014 Youth Olympic Games concluded its third visit to the Chinese city today, with the commission members praising the strong progress made across all areas of the organization with just less than two years to go until the second edition of the summer Games. The Coordination Commission, headed by IOC member Lambis Nikolaou, was particularly satisfied with the development of the Youth Olympic Village as a stand-out project well ahead of schedule. A visit was also made to the YOV site, which is part of a major city development plan that will become a housing facility, school and kindergarten after the Games. In addition, the Nanjing Organizing Committee (NYOGOC) underlined its commitment to delivering “green Games” with the integration of solar energy and rainwater harvesting in the Village construction. Since the last visit of the Coordination Commission in Oct. '11, several milestones have been reached as the local organizers transition from the strategic to operational planning phase. Construction of the Youth Olympic Sports Park, one of the only sports venues to be built from scratch for the Games, began in February (IOC).