May 03, 2013 18:39

"Paris is ready to organize the World Championship match"

Only hours after the open letter by the Norwegian Chess Federation, we have now also received a press release and an offical support letter from the mayor of Paris that the French capital is "ready organize the World Championship match between Viswanathan Anand and Magnus Carlsen". The bid is much higher than the one by Chennai: a 2.65 million Euro prize fund and a 800,000 Euro contribution to FIDE, compared to the 2,55 million dollar total budget prize fund from India.

Press release

Paris is ready to organize Anand-Carlsen World Chess Championship

Paris – 3rd of May 2013. The city of Paris, France, is ready to host the World Chess Championship Match between GM Viswanathan Anand, from India, and GM Magnus Carlsen, from Norway.

In a letter to FIDE, the Mayor of Paris Mr. Bertrand Delanoë, expresses full support to the French Chess Federation in its aim to organize the final match to take place in November 2013.

The Paris Mayor states in his letter to FIDE that “the city of Paris welcomes the French Chess Federation initiative” to organize the Anand-Carlsen Chess World Championship, and “is happy to give its whole hearted support to the French Chess Federation to successfully carry out this project.”

The offer sent to FIDE includes a € 2.65 Million- Prize fund and a € 800 000- contribution to FIDE in accordance to FIDE regulations. It also offers a specific budget allocated for media coverage.

“Paris is the city where FIDE was born and ever since, chess has been part of our cultural heritage. Our Capital is looking forward to organize and welcome in the best possible conditions this Championship” concludes Mayor Delanoë’s letter to FIDE President Kirsan Ilymzhinov.
FIDE, the World Chess Federation, was founded in Paris in 1924. A world Chess Championship in Paris would be a prelude to FIDE’s 90th anniversary.
Philippe Mouttou WWC in Paris

The press release was sent together with an official support letter from the mayor of Paris:

Dear Mr President,

I have learnt with great interest of the French Chess Federation project to organize in Paris the upcoming Chess World Championship in later in November this year. This Championship is very exciting with the match between Viswanathan Anand and Magnus Carlsen.

The city of Paris welcomes this initiative and I am happy to give my whole hearted support to the French Chess Federation to successfully carry out this project.

Paris is the city where FIDE was born and ever since, chess has been part of our cultural heritage. Our Capital is looking forward to organize and welcome in the best possible conditions this Championship that will enable Paris to profile itself internationally.

Yours sincerely,

Bertrand DELANOË

Mister Kirsan ILYUMZHINOV ·
President of the International Chess Federation
9 Syggrou avenue

It's not a coincidence that Norway's open letter and this bid from Paris came today. This weekend there is a FIDE Presidential Board meeting in Baku, and one of the topics is the upcoming world title match. The arguments from the Norwegians to hold a proper bidding process and the Paris bid should, and probably will be, discussed.

Peter Doggers's picture
Author: Peter Doggers


Aditya's picture

Now Chennai will be given the assurance that it will get to hold the next World Championship match, even if it does not involve Anand :)

GuyFawkes's picture

I am waiting for the bid of the Mayor of New York City.

Heinz's picture

What happend to Agon? They where talking about New York. No announcement from FIDE regarding their involvement?

PircAlert's picture

FIDE should use this interest level shown to start the bidding for the next world championship match after this upcoming world championship match in Chennai. We will see how many true bids with guarantee money comes up, and if there is true sponsorship interest in chess, or is it just a gimmick to steal the title hook or crook and break up the world chess body.

If the upcoming world championship is allowed to happen in anti-FIDE's friendly countries, Anand will NOT be allowed to win. Necessary propaganda for Carlsen great is already made. What is pending is foul play to make Carlsen win to complete their propaganda claim, which can be done with no risk in their friendly countries. Which is why all the fuss about playing in Chennai. Like it happened recently in Ireland, even if you watch with your own eyes you can't shout about foul plays, as it will be done in a way you can't expose it probably without stepping into some privacy issues.

Chess integrity should be of utmost importance than chess sponsorship. The match should happen in a place that should guarantee flaming swords to stop signals, adequate online protection from stealing preparations, necessary sting operations to catch preparation stealing from seconds, from super computers players may hire, against stealing preparations at security points at airports, against stealing from player's home etc.

If someone cannot play in a championship when there is lot of money is offered and when there is no valid reason to decline, there is something wrong definitely. Why don't you just play in Chennai and win and use your clout and play somebody else for bigger money if that is where your eyes are fixed upon?

Leo's picture

Hm, that all made sense ... not!

calvin amari's picture

Somebody isn't taking his meds...

PircAlert's picture

Again, Paris could be a fake offer to open up the bidding process and then for others to pitch in to raise the bid and take it to whereever they have already decided to! So let us use this bidding for the match after the upcoming match.

Anonymous's picture

sure ! you can imagine that the maire of paris will write to FIDE just like that !?!??! it's a real offer

Tarjei's picture

Great news! Shows that what the "Carlsen camp" has been saying all along about possible interest from other cities, weren't just "words" and "rumors". Like a few people have been claiming.

Thomas Oliver's picture

"words" and "rumors" - I was one of those making such a claim, or rather asking questions. Today happened what I proposed - a potential organizer should confirm his interest including financial details. BTW a little "detail" is still missing: where does the money come from, who are the sponsors? It could even be Norwegian money which at least wouldn't be unprecedented: Azerbaijan paid for two candidates events held in other countries.

Bobby Fiske's picture

"BTW a little "detail" is still missing: where does the money come from, who are the sponsors? It could even be Norwegian money which at least wouldn't be unprecedented: Azerbaijan paid for two candidates events held in other countries."

-What kind of stupid suspiciousness is this???

First, Azerbaijan sponsored the 2 last Candidates because it gave them a wild card; An entrance ticket for Radjabov to get a possible shot at the title. They wanted to host the event too, but Armenian player Aronian protested for safety reasons. So, as a compromise the tournament venue was moved to neutral ground.

Second, the bid from the French chess federation is backed up by the Paris mayor. (Read the letter). Such an arrangement will attract valuable visitors and media for several weeks during November which otherwise is a slow month tourist wise for the French capitol.

Third, if somebody in Norway, private or public, came up with that kind of money of course they wanted to have the benefit of the arrangement too.

Thomas Oliver's picture

First, isn't it a legitimate question to ask where the money comes from? As sponsors aren't mentioned, my first impression actually was that it might be federation money (= amateur contributions) plus city money (from tax payers) - which I would consider quite a scandal. In the meantime, the French federation webpage (but only this source, available to those who can read French?) mentions "support by Philippe Moutou on behalf of a group of private enterprises".

"Norwegian money" was of course speculative, but there are some parallels to the Azeri case. "Norway" (read: team Carlsen in the widest sense) wants the best for Carlsen, and somehow assumes that he might not be at his best in Chennai. They apparently gave up the idea to hold the match in Norway, as they later insisted on neutral ground. If Norwegian sponsors were involved, they could still get credit within Norway - and how many non-Norwegians read, for example, VG newspaper?

Support from the Paris mayor: what he did is coming up with an "I like it" statement, nothing less and nothing more. "Backed up" might mean that there is, after all, city money involved - already now or in case of need (if a sponsor turns out to be unreliable for whichever reason). The mayor's statement might even have been drafted by the organizers - to do his daily job, the mayor doesn't need to know that FIDE was founded in Paris, he doesn't even need to know who Anand and Carlsen are.
"November which otherwise is a slow month tourist wise" - how do you know, I don't know either? One can do city trips (museum visits, shopping, ...) any time of the year unless the weather is truly horrible - freezing cold or raining all the time. And there are also business visitors - so I would guess hotels are always booked up (not 100% but about 80%?). Paris doesn't really need chess to promote itself as a tourist destination: how many people saw the Eiffel Tower for the first time when Peter Doggers took a photo for an Alekhine Memorial report? :) And how many people will travel to Paris from afar (foreign countries and distant parts of France) for a chess WCh match? Maybe about 1,000 per day - a lot for a place like Wijk aan Zee, not that much for a big city. By comparison, the Paris Marathon had 38,690 finishers (OK, just one day and no way to find out how many were local runners).

bondegnasker's picture

"Isn't it a legitimate question to ask where the money comes from?" - yes, perhaps.

But it is not reasonable that whenever something unexpected happens in the chess world, your initial reaction is always 'could this possibly be the result of an evil Norwegian conspiracy?' - yes, anything is possible, but your anti-Norwegianism is getting silly.

I happen to have known a few Norwegians in my time, and I can assure you that some of them are in fact NOT evil, and some of them (not necessarily the same ones) rarely or never take part in conspiracies.

Anything that 'can't be ruled out' is not automatically a 'reasonable assumption'. And your 'reasonable assumptions' are biased to the extent that one MIGHT(!) suspect mental illness of some sort.

Thomas Oliver's picture

I wrote " "Norway" (read: team Carlsen in the widest sense)" - note scare quotes for Norway, so in any case it isn't about Norway and Norwegians in general. Maybe some don't like or don't care about Carlsen, there may even still be some who do not even know of him as they read newspapers selectively.

One thing's for sure: team Carlsen likes this turn of events. And all along this soap opera, they sent mixed signals: We want to hold the match in Norway, no it should be on neutral ground. Carlsen will play in Chennai if they win the bidding procedure, no he won't play in Chennai.

BTW "something unexpected happens in the chess world", which earlier examples do you have in mind? And this isn't really unexpected but was predicted by some experts or insiders - while I took a skeptical "seeing is believing, rumors are no more than rumors" attitude.

calvin amari's picture

You mean Team Anand is unambiguously behind the Chennai bid but, because Team Carlsen (broadly defined as everyone but the chessvibes FlatEarth society) might possibly be behind the Paris bid, this development should be viewed skeptically? asking where the money behind theChennai bid

bondegnasker's picture

Thanks for clarifying. So those Norwegians who have heard about Magnus Carlsen and who likes him and care about him are all evil conspirators, but the rest are not (necessarily).

redivivo's picture

Where does the money come from? ARE THEY PAYING WITH NAZI GOLD?!!??

Shlomo's picture

Is it supposed to be funny? cause it's not.

valg321's picture

@Shlomo: try relaxing your sphincter muscles...before this post gets deleted

Tarjei's picture

So now, that Paris has made their interest public, you find a reason to suggest that Norway is financially involved? Why do you feel the need to make such a silly claim, based on nothing?

The letter comes with support from the Mayor of Paris. Do you think it's possible that it actually comes from the city of Paris?

mishanp's picture

Peter, you have the wrong figure for Chennai - $2.55 million is also only the prize fund. So the numbers are essentially the same, but Paris is paying in Euros rather than USD, which is of course better :)

Anton's picture

The French should have offered more to FIDE not to the players if they want the match :-)

shanghai's picture

Paris does of course also have additional costs for organizing the event. Not specified in the article, but probably far higher than Chennai on that figures as well.

FM Grand's picture

This is about to go crazy. Let the bidding start!

The Golden Knight's picture

Trés bien!

hank's picture

Good for chess, good for transparency, but bad for Ilymzhinov.
The FIDE-process smelled from the start.
With Ilymzhinov's prior history of corruption, there are no high odds for a private "share" in the Chennai-deal.
Why else trying to "seal" an agreement this way, and then arguing that no "formal" protests or bids were put forward?
There is certainly time for a new FIDE-management.

filiusdextris's picture

Fantastic news! How romantic! Seriously, even as a mere internet fan, loving the return of these famous European cities to hosting to-flight chess contests.

joker's picture

Surely Paris would be much better for most internet viewers because of the time zone?

Anonymous's picture

chennai will be better than paris

Anonymous's picture

it should be holded in chennai, india from where the 5 time world champion belongs.

Chris's picture

It shall be held in Persia fromwhere chess came. :)

migtiger's picture

Nope chess came from India. Deal with it.

RG13's picture

Different forms of chess came from different parts of the world, just like with the martial arts.

Anonymous's picture

about 38 Celcius in Chennai in november, no THANK YOU

Thomas Oliver's picture

Uninformed statements about climate in Chennai, no thank you. In November, the typical daily range is 22.6-29.4 degrees with a record high of 34 degrees (source Wikipedia).
38 degrees (and possibility of 40+) is about the typical high for May and June when the Anand-Gelfand match was held. At the time, it made sense to hold the match elsewhere from a climatic point of view.

Saji Soman's picture

Chennai is a good vennue for this event.Please don't say stupid comments like that there is humid condition in Chennai for the season. Chennai is not saying the players that you should play the event in the middle of the street.

Chris's picture

Climate and biosphere is dangerous for European.

Saji Soman's picture

Chess not a Europen sports items. World means not Europe.

Chris's picture

Anand lived in Europe for long time. He is used to climate. Carlsen has never lived in Tamil land and in tropical climate.
The living area shall acceptable for both players.

Tarjei's picture

Yes, but you would think that Magnus doesn't want to stay indoors for three weeks straight. He'd want to step out to get some "fresh" air, relax and so on.

In an unfamiliar city with a climate such as Chennai, there's always the risk of becoming sick.

In any case, the Carlsen camp just want an open bidding process. If Chennai has the best offer, then so be it.

sq's picture

In november or probably a bit later when the match will actually be held, the climate in chennai will probably be a lot better than paris, and certainly better than norway (if some unfortunate person actually was forced to vist there).

Saji Soman's picture

Carlsen camp makes unnecessary arguments. Those who are here really will not make claim that during this period they wont get fresh air and pleasant climate.

Chris's picture

1st problem is breaking FIDE bidding rule.
It is enough.

Saji Soman's picture

Can you tell an example where Fide acted in a proper manner? Under this circumstances, why this dramatic arguments? It is some pepole imagine that if you are in Chenni, you become sick. These all are baseless arguements.

Anonymous's picture

in 1971-2

Zeblakob's picture

looks good. But too cold for Anand.

S3's picture


It's not a neutral location either. Too many white people.

Anonymous's picture

too many white people in Paris ??? You should visit before talking non sense

eric's picture

check French Colonization please.

Feuertrunken's picture

Zeb, you may get a chance to visit the WCC match by bike! Z:-)


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