IBM and Fuji Xerox sign on as Paralympic sponsors

IBM Australia has formalised its role in the Sydney 2000 Paralympic Games, announcing on Friday that it will become a sponsor for the event.

Fuji Xerox also announced it will provide technology solutions under a sponsorship arrangement.

With the addition of IBM and Fuji Xerox, the Paralympic Games has now secured $40 million out of a total $65 million in sponsorship, Margie MacDonald, media relations manager for the Paralympic Games, said.

Both organisations are worldwide technology sponsors for the Sydney 2000 Olympic Games.

According to officials, at the Paralympic Games IBM will provide the results system, an intranet-based information retrieval system, accreditation and media systems as well an Internet service for athletes.

Fuji Xerox will provide a documentation system, including printing, copying and facsimile machines.

Officials said both IBM and Fuji Xerox will use much of the same technology infrastructure and support systems they are developing for the Olympic Games.

MacDonald said much of the technology will be the same except downsized to cater for the smaller event which will have 4000 athletes from 125 countries participating in 18 sports.

In comparison the Olympic Games will have more than 10,000 athletes, from some 200 countries participating in 28 sports.

Rory Mack, IBM's director Olympic Project Office, said in addition to the technology deployed during the Olympic Games, IBM is providing its voice recognition application , ViaVoice for the first time. The solution will enable athletes to send e-mails by talking, Mack said.

IBM is also providing Internet services, through the IBM surf Shack, to athletes at the Paralympic Games for the first time.

The Sydney 2000 Paralympic Games will held from October 18 to 29, 2000.

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