Vodafone set for naming rights deal with London Olympic Stadium owners

Paul Keslo, Sky Correspondent

Vodafone is close to agreeing a £20m naming rights deal for the London Olympic Stadium, Sky News can reveal.

Negotiations between the telecoms giant and the stadium owners, the London Legacy Development Corporation (LLDC), have been ongoing for several months.

But they are understood to be close to agreeing a six-year deal worth £20m.

The deal, which will begin this summer in time to capitalise on the new football season, is a major boost to the stadium and the LLDC, which has been searching for a high-profile partner for the arena since the 2012 Olympics.

Securing a high-profile brand in Vodafone will be seen as an endorsement of an arena that has had significant challenges since it began being used by West Ham United last August.

It is also a fillip to the LLDC's business model, with all revenue from the deal going to the publicly-owned body rather than West Ham.

Vodafone are expected to use the deal to showcase their latest technology, with high-speed mobile connections part of the offer to spectators.

The stadium has faced major challenges ever since its inception and the transition from Olympic to football mode has been troubled.

Last year, Sky News revealed that conversion costs of the stadium had soared by £50m more than previously revealed by former London mayor Boris Johnson.

It also emerged that moving supposedly retractable seats to facilitate athletics could cost up to £8m each summer.

Current mayor Sadiq Khan ordered a review of the stadium's costs and financing following the revelations that will get under way shortly.

The arena, which has cost more than £700m in taxpayer funds, stages the World Athletics Championships in August.

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