NBC Sees $800 Million in Ads; India Welcomes IOC Advice; Rome Stadium Turns 60

(ATR) NBC on pace for $800 million in Sochi sales ... Indian sports leaders plot return to Olympic Movement ... Rome celebrates 60th anniversary of Olympic Stadium ... More inside this Olympic Newsdesk ...

NBC Sees $800 Million in Ad Sales

NBC announced it's on pace for $800 million in ad sales for the Sochi 2014 Winter Olympics.

That total would be a Winter Games record, and according to NBC Sports marketing and sales VP Seth Winter, is without ad-buys from Anheuser-Busch or Hilton hotels, both of which are U.S. Olympic Committee sponsors.

"Based on our pacing, we will have a record on hands," Winter was quoted by AdAge, adding that the decisions from the two USOC partners is "disappointing." He estimated that between 75 and 80 percent of all ad time for the Games has been purchased.

The publication reports that Coca-Cola and AT&T have purchased primetime ad slots, and deals are "on the cusp" with Visa and McDonald’s.

Indian Sport Leaders Welcome IOC Decision

The president of the disputed Indian Olympic Association, and the country’s sports minister, are establishing plans to implement IOC provisions to lift the IOA’s suspension.

Indian officials met with the IOC on Wednesday to establish a roadmap for the IOA to re-join the Olympic Movement. The IOA was suspended in December over concerns of autonomy and governance. Elections for the body were held, but the IOC refused to acknowledge them.

"I welcome the decision arrived at the joint meeting of the IOA and the IOC," said Abhay Singh Chautala, leader of the disputed IOA. "Though we were elected unanimously and as per the rules and regulations of the IOA but in the interest of the sport, we are fully agreeing to have a re-election and all the modalities during this short period will be sorted out by the IOA representatives with the IOC."

The key step for the IOA following the talks, the IOC mandated, was the staging of free and fair elections.

Jitendra Singh, India’s sports minister, said he was "glad" the meeting took place and said the IOA could fulfill its obligations within two months.

"As per Constitution of the IOA, a 30-day prior notice is required to call an Extraordinary General Meeting. I think the whole matter could be wrapped up in 60 days."

60th Anniversary for Rome Olympic Stadium

May 17 marks the 60th anniversary of the Rome Olympic Stadium.

Known in Italian as "Stadio Olimpico," the venue remains Rome’s largest. A football match between Italy and Hungary was the first event in the stadium.

The current stadium was built on top of an existing facility, and has hosted a Papal Mass, the 1987 athletics world championships, four European Cup or Champions League finals, numerous concerts and other high-level sporting events.

Yang Ho Cho Takes Table Tennis Post

Korean Air chairman and ex-chief of the bid for the 2018 Winter Olympics in Pyeongchang is named a special advisor for finance and marketing to the International Table Tennis Federation.

The appointment was made Wednesday at the ITTF Annual General Meeting in Paris.

Cho will help secure new financing and revenue opportunities and offer counsel on marketing.

Cho is president of the Korea Table Tennis Association and the Vice-President of the Asia Table Tennis Union. He is a vice president of the Korean Olympic Committee, as well as the chairman, CEO and major shareholder of Korean Air and the Hanjin Group.

Cho helped establish the Peace and Sport Table Tennis Cup, a tournament to encourage dialogue and reconciliation between nations in November 2011. Participation included the pairing of North Korea and South Korea as well as India and Pakistan.

Exercising his prerogative as Korean Air chief, Cho has formed professional table tennis teams backed by the airline, in addition to the existing volleyball and speed-skating teams.

Media Watch

NPR reports on Wednesday’s "Rumble on the Rails" in New York City’s Grand Central Terminal, where wrestlers from Iran, Russia and the U.S. fought on behalf of FILA’s bid to stay in the Olympics for 2020 and beyond.

Written by Matthew Grayson.

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