Keith Mills, co-founder of Air Miles and begetter of Nectar, the UK retail loyalty programme, has been appointed chief executive of London 2012, the consortium bidding to host the 2012 Olympic Games.

Mills, already parked in the ceo’s hotseat, was welcomed by the project’s chairman Barbara Cassani, chief executive of British Airways’ lossmaking budget subsidiary Go before its acquisition by Easyjet [WAMN: 20-May-02].

Hailing Mills as "the right man for the job", Cassani added, "he has the skills to run the bid and then win the support of the sporting community."

Mills responded in harmonic vein: "Today I'm joining an impressive team that has already begun the work that can bring the Olympic Games to London; it's my job to make it happen." His new team, Mills assured, were working to produce the best technical proposals for the games, "and to win the hearts and minds of the sporting world".

Then followed a plainsong of plaudits from the great and the good.

First the tremulous contralto of Tessa Jowell, secretary of state for culture, media and sport: "There is only one chance to get this right and I believe that in Keith we have the ceo to do just that."

Then the basso profundo of British Olympic Association chairman Craig Reedie: "Keith’s leadership skills will further help us meet our objective of bringing the Olympic Games to London in 2012."

Followed by the nasal counter-tenor of London mayor Ken Livingstone: "Keith has shown he can deliver projects on a global scale. In Barbara and Keith we have a formidable team leading our bid."

It was not stated whether Mills is giving up his position as chairman of Loyalty Management UK to focus on the Olympic Project.

Data sourced from:; additional content by WARC staff