US, IOC work to iron out Olympic revenue agreement


Denver (Colorado) : The International Olympic Committee (IOC) and the US Olympic Committee (USOC) have met to discuss a revenue sharing agreement, but said they would not reach an agreement on their main dispute until 2013.

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Senior IOC members have insisted the current agreement gives US an unfair share of television-contract and sponsorship money. The row has come up at a delicate time, with Chicago bidding to stage the 2016 summer Games.

The present agreement, first signed in the late 1980s, allocates 12.75 percent of the IOC’s US TV revenues to the USOC, and 20 percent of revenues from the IOC’s top sponsorship programme.

In a joint statement, the organisations said Friday they would begin talks in 2013 to resolve the issue with the goal of having a new policy in place by 2020.

The USOC also agreed in principle to pay a larger portion of the cost of the Olympics, but talks on the details had not been set.

The groups will meet again before the end of the year, the statement said.

The Association of Summer Olympic International Federations (ASOIF) Tuesday urged the IOC to terminate its long-standing contract with the USOC and start negotiating a new one.

“The greed of this organisation is unlimited,” Hein Verbruggen, former head of the International Cycling Union, said of the USOC earlier this week. “It infuriates everybody and especially me.”

The USOC has in the past argued that it is entitled to a larger share since US TV rights and sponsors provide the IOC with more than half of its revenues.

Chicago bid organisers have distanced themselves from the revenue issue, although some US media reports have said the controversy could hurt the city’s 2016 chances.

Chicago 2016 chief executive Pat Ryan has invited President Barack Obama to be in Copenhagen for its final presentation before the IOC general assembly in October in what would be a major boost for its chances.

The IOC will select the host city by secret ballot Oct 2.