2010 Games sponsorships ahead of schedule

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Vancouver (British Columbia) Oct 20: Organizers of the 2010 Winter Olympics in Vancouver are having an easier time than expected raising revenue from domestic sponsorship deals, officials said.

Organizers had expected to sign C$65 million in deals with Canadian sponsors in 2007, but have already raised C$80 million this year. The Vancouver Organizing Committee (VANOC) expects to sign several other agreements by year's end.

The 2010 Games budget projects a total of C$760 million in domestic sponsorship revenue, and VANOC said yesterday it has signed agreements worth C$668.5 million so far.

Venue construction is largely on time and within budget with most facilities still expected to be completed before the start of the 2008 Summer Games in Beijing, the committee said in its annual financial report.

VANOC has pegged the total cost of staging the Vancouver Games at about C$1.6 billion, including the C$580 million venue construction budget that is funded by the Canadian and British Columbia governments.

The budget does not include billions of dollars spent by public officials on infrastructure improvements, such as a rebuilt highway to the mountain ski resort of Whistler where many of the events will take place. Security during the Games will also be paid for by the government.

Reuters>

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