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(June 28, 2001) -- Microsoft Corp. has secured the rights to produce and host the official Web site for the 2002 Winter Olympic Games in Salt Lake City.

The software giant's deal with the Salt Lake Organizing Committee and NBC calls for it to produce Olympic Web sites via, which is a joint venture of Microsoft and NBC. Microsoft's MSN Internet network will sell ads and sponsorships for the Olympics site in conjunction with NBC. The site will feature exclusive content on athletes, game results and news prior to and during the Games.

Microsoft hopes the deal will help MSN increase its clout globally in the battle against AOL Time Warner's America Online for consumer mind and market share.

The terms of the deal were not disclosed.

In other news, Microsoft landed a major victory today as a federal appeals court vacated a lower court's ruling that called for a breakup of the company. The decision comes about a year after a federal judge ruled that Microsoft violated antitrust laws by extending its operating system hegemony in order to increase its share of Web browsers. -- Tobi Elkin

Copyright June 2001, Crain Communications Inc.

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