BT’s sports channels to help drive Olympic jobs legacy

How the former broadcast centre will look on completion.

How the former broadcast centre will look on completion.

BT’s decision to base its new sports channels in the Olympic park will boost job opportunities and help support local businesses, according to Olympic legacy bosses.

The broadband and phone giant has taken a ten year lease on part of the former Olympic broadcast centre, transforming it into a new state of the art base for its new channels.

Mayor Boris Johnson and the London Legacy Development Corporation (LLDC), which is responsible for securing the park’s future, have both promised the site will deliver sustainable growth for the local area.

LLDC chiefs say the Mayor’s ambitions have been given a major boost by BT’s presence.

Speaking to MayorWatch at Thursday’s launch of the channels, Neale Coleman, Deputy Chairman of the LLDC, said: “Having an anchor tenant like BT here just transforms the prospects of this building.”

Mr Coleman said it was “notoriously difficult to find good uses for Olympic broadcast centres” but predicted BT’s presence would held secure the building’s future by making it more attractive to other “blue chip” companies.

He added that the LLDC was “fantastically optimistic” the site would be a “terrific generator of jobs”.

LLDC CEO Dennis Hone added that: “BT is an anchor for what we’re trying to achieve here”, providing 400 of the expected 4,000 jobs to be based on the site.

Local businesses are set to be the biggest beneficiaries of BT’s decision to set up base on the park after Jamie Hindhaugh, Chief Operating Officer at BT Sport, said “local suppliers are more efficient”.

He also said the area offered access to the “great talent” BT needed to realise its ambitions for the channels.