INTERVIEW-Olympics-New Tokyo 2020 sponsors coming onboard - CEO Muto

TOKYO, July 22 (Reuters) - Tokyo 2020 CEO Toshiro Muto has told Reuters the organising committee expects to take on several new sponsors in the coming months despite businesses being hit hard by the novel coronavirus pandemic.

The Tokyo Olympics were due to start on Friday but were put back to 2021 due to the pandemic.

The delay will incur additional costs for organisers but Muto, who said the final figure would not be known until December, is hopeful new sponsors will help bridge the gap.

“I know that businesses are in dire circumstances because of coronavirus but still there are companies who are coming forward to say they want to sponsor the Games, which we appreciate very much,” Muto told Reuters in an interview on Tuesday.

“It is a bright piece of news.”

Muto said he hoped all of Tokyo 2020’s current sponsors would extend their contracts until the start of the Games next year.

A poll conducted by Japanese public broadcaster NHK last month found two-thirds of Tokyo 2020’s corporate sponsors were undecided on whether to continue their support. (Editing by Peter Rutherford )