Milan Cortina 2026, Novari: “We have already signed eight contracts for 280 million sponsorships”
“We are negotiating eight contracts for 280 million sponsorships per Milan-Cortina 2026, despite war, inflation and pandemic. We will communicate the first 4 by the summer and the other 4 by the autumn. I can say that four years after the Games we are already at 50% of the economic coverage expected with partners. To understand us in Paris, two years after the Games, I’m still at 60 ”.
Other than dull and worried, Vincenzo NovariCEO of the Foundation which manages the 2026 Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games controlled by Coni, and by the Lombardy and Veneto Regions and by the Municipalities of Milan and Cortina: “I feel optimistic because we are working well thanks to a highly focused commercial structure and to intermediaries who already had close relations with Coni “.
However, Novari, despite this, in recent months there has been a first-rate media cannonade against her, according to many, her chair is at great political risk. After all, you were designated by the Conte 2 government, and the picture today is very different. What do you say?
Politics obviously has different interests than those of a private company. I realize that especially under elections the Milano Cortina games have an important potential for promises but the Statute of our Foundation is clear, precisely by the will of the Founders.
The representatives of politics and sport are responsible for strategic direction and supervision of management which, on the other hand, is expressly entrusted to a Committee led by me which must operate in the sole interest of the Foundation’s purpose and therefore of an effective and efficient organization of the Games.
Yet the founders wrote a letter to Palazzo Chigi asking for a meeting to address the more complex issues concerning the Games. What does it tell us?
That there is an objective problem, the delay in infrastructures is dramatic and, together with the increase in energy costs and inflation, they are rightly worrying. On the other hand, I see no problems with regard to management transparency, I was particularly pleased with a letter from President Fontana who complimented me on this. We have 5 armored levels of control. Every month we have sharing meetings with the Regions and Milan. As for commercial management, I have already told you.
I reread a title that appeared here on Affari a few days ago: “Novari and the case of Vetrya. Between the Prosecutor’s Office and farewell to the Olympics “. What do you comment on?
Which is a lawsuit title. Especially since the article absolutely does not justify it. Read it again. My name is associated with the magic word, “Power of Attorney”. But the case we are talking about with Milano Cortina and with myself has nothing to do with it.
You explain to us on the merits how things stand.
Simple: Vetrya has been for years one of the most important national companies in the digital sector, award-winning and listed on the stock exchange. The initiative of the judiciary on Vetrya refers to some of its activities, with a company, WindTre, in which I have never worked and to a period of two years following my exit from the world of telecommunications. On a personal basis and well before I was called to the Foundation, I had started an entrepreneurial project with Vetrya, as did dozens of other important Italian companies and also a foreign one, the Vatican.
Ok, but then Vetrya became a supplier of the Foundation …
It won a public tender against four other entrants because it offered a much cheaper price! Only time after the market, and we, we learned of the problems of Vetrya, we resolved the contract with them and we relied, to maintain the continuity of the technological platforms produced, to Quibit, a choice also made by giants such as Generali, Turner and many other groups.
So you have nothing to do with the Prosecutor’s Office and Vetrya?
Zero, despite that title of yours.
It happens that a title forces the content of an article. But she had a real grain: Diana Bianchedi resigned from her management committee, whom she trusted a lot.
Yes, Diana had a dual role in our organization, she is responsible for the coordination between the various directions of the Foundation and was part of the Committee. She has a family in Rome and the double assignment was obviously too heavy to manage. She expressed this personal need to focus on her coordination activities.
Will it be replaced?
Yes, the statute provides for a minimum of three to a maximum of seven members. Now there are two of us left, so I have proposed, as per the Articles of Association, to the Founding Members a list of thirteen high-level professionals among which to indicate from 1 to 5 that I will submit for approval by the Board.
A few names?
Names no, identikit yes. Among the thirteen, there are three presidents of important associations of Veneto and Lombardy, three important university professors, five highly experienced managers and entrepreneurs and a medalist Olympic athlete and multiple world champion: I believe that one of our missions is to directly involve former athletes in the management of the Games. We already have several within the organization
Speaking of problems, Malagò also came under media attack …
He is a very prominent person and it is easy for the media to bring him up as soon as possible. Remember, however, that Giovanni is President of both Coni and Milan Cortina 2026 at the behest of the IOC, although this choice was not appreciated by everyone in Italian politics.
In conclusion, what news can you anticipate on management, if all goes well?
There are many, and all very important. I can only name three of them. From next winter, the locations that will host the Games will already wear Milan Cortina 2026 and immediately afterwards we will start a project that will bring our Games to all the main Italian winter locations. From North to south. They must be the Games of all Italians.
In September, an Advisory Board will also start giving us its contribution, which will bring together some of the best personalities in the country. It will have an important role and not just an advisory one. Here, too, no previews, just two clues. I asked to be part of it and he enthusiastically replied to a former Minister, a great fan of Cortina.
I will also propose it to an important former magistrate of the Milan court. Finally, but very important: after the June 8 event at the Farnesina in which Minister Di Maio introduced the project to our diplomatic community, in September we will sign a protocol with the Foreign Ministry to bring the Milan Cortina 2026 project to the main capitals foreigners. A road-show on the Games, an opportunity that is too important not to make it a great stage for the Olympic territories and for all the Italian excellences.
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