The Olympics

The Olympics


News, information and stories about the Olympics.

Thursday, April 16, 2009

The Kiss of Death

British Airports Authority (BAA) is in talks to become a sponsor of the London Olympics, in a deal that would confirm Heathrow as the gateway to the 2012 Games.

BAA currently owns the much loathed third world quality Heathrow, together with six other British airports.

In the event that the deal is approved by the 2012 organising committee Locog, BAA would provide free services such as welcome desks, fast-tracks for athletes, VIP escorts and media facilities.

In return it would become a "tier three supplier" and have use of Olympic branding at the airport, it would also be granted first refusal for staff on tickets and hospitality at the 2012 Games.

BAA has been ordered by the competition commission to sell Gatwick and Stanstead.

The deal would cost BAA £10M, which some would argue would be better spent on improving the lousy infrastructure at Heathrow.

Despite wishing to spend £10M on the Olympics, passenger numbers at BAA's seven British airports fell 11% to 10.6 million in March from a year earlier.

Additionally, BAA's £10BN debt burden will be reclassified as "junk" within two months, potentially triggering a financial meltdown at the airports operator as lenders recall their loans.

The question that Locog may care to ask themselves is this, will BAA actually be around in their current form when the Olympics are held?

Olympic Medals won during the Beijing 2008 Olympics

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