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Sir Keith Mills (right) and Seb Coe (middle) promoting Sported and how it helps young people develop life skills through sporting activity


nine cities bidding for the 2012 Games I thought we had a very good chance against Paris and Madrid, which were considered to be our rivals.


“Any potential host city can enthuse about its ambience, great hotels and fantastic venues, but the one thing that no other city had previously done was to say ‘we’ll use the Games to inspire young people around the world to get in- volved in sport – using it to improve lives through education and health’.” Once the bid was won, Mills drew on his business expertise to set up the Lon- don 2012 organising committee (LOCOG) and the Olympic Delivery Authority (ODA). “LOCOG is essentially a commer- cial organisation,” he says. “It had to raise more than £2bn of its own money to fund the Games. And the key to starting up any successful business is to find really good people to run it. Which is why Seb


Issue 4 2011 © cybertrek 2011


Left: Mills was one of the crew that won the Clipper Round the World Yacht Race in 1999. Centre: Seb Coe and Keith Mills waiting for the IOC’s decision on the 2012 Olympic hosts in Singapore. Right: an International Inspiration project in India


Coe and I appointed Paul Deighton from Goldman Sachs as CEO.


“A great team of people can figure out the most difficult things and make them work. Between us, we’ve put together an outstanding management team of people with complementary skills – everyone is dedicated to what they do, but we all have fun and enjoy what we do too.”


LONDON LEGACY


Regarding the ambitious promises made in the bid, Mills says: “We’re not there yet, but we’re in pretty good shape.


“The transformation of east London has been exceptional. There’s going to be hundreds of companies that will have created bigger and better businesses off the back of the Games and we’re doing a great job in getting the Olympic values through to over 20,000 schools around the UK,” he explains.


“Outside of the UK, we’ve created International Inspiration, a charitable foun- dation that I personally chair. We’ve already run programmes in 20 countries and en- gaged with more than 12 million children – that’s pretty astonishing,” he says. Mills’ own charitable foundation, Sport- ed, is also gaining momentum. “We’ve now got more than 1,000 clubs involved in this venture across the UK. Sported pro- vides both funding and help in the form of mentors and volunteers for tiny groups that use sport to help disadvantaged children in some of the more challenging


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