Jan 21, 2013, 1:53 PM EDT
Seven of Turkey’s largest companies are offering to sponsor the country in its bid to host the 2020 Summer Games in Istanbul with upwards of $20 million in funding, the largest private backing of a sporting event in the country’s history.
Istanbul is going up against Madrid and Tokyo, the presumed favorite to host the Olympics, in an IOC vote this September in Buenos Aires. It is Istanbul’s fifth time making it to the finals of the bidding process, with recent failures in 2000 and 2008.
“Turkey is one of the most fertile economic environments in Eurasia, and these seven companies typify the innovation, drive and tireless pursuit of excellence that have got us here,” Hasan Arat said.
“Our new National Sponsors bring with them an enormous amount of expertise and experience across a wide range of sectors and their input will be crucial as the campaign progresses. This is the most powerful alliance between the sports community, the business community and every level of government we have ever had.”
The deal was signed during a special dinner hosted by Suat Kiliç, Turkey’s Minister of Youth and Sports, following a meeting held last week at the Prime Minister’s office.
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