The 2010 FIFA World Cup will be remembered as much for its field action as for the off-field newsmakers. Besides socialite Paris Hilton and the deafening Vuvuzela’s, another off-field newsmaker was the fortune-telling octopus, Paul. The octopus has achieved celebrity status after correctly predicting Spain as the winner of this year’s World Cup. Like every celebrity, Paul is being sought across the globe by both fans and foes alike. Paul can definitely count Russian bookmakers Liga Stavok (“Bet League in Russian) among his many fans. The Russian bookmakers have reportedly offered to buy Paul for a cool 100,000 Euros ($128,800)! This price is, however, negotiable, and they are ready to raise the mark if required.
However, Paul, who recently retired from the predictions game and resided in Sea Life Center in Oberhausen, Germany, will not get to taste Russian water’s as the firm, Dederichs Reinecke and Parner, said it declined the offer and also stated that Paul would not be sold to anyone.
The Russian bookmakers are, however, awaiting an official response. They claim they want Paul to become the symbol/mascot for their business and want to see whether he can forecast the winners of football games. Lastly, given his world-famous status, the bookmakers wished to get him to Russia. In fact, they have even made preparations for Paul to reside at Moscow City Aquarium if that were the sellers’ condition. He would be served only the best of food and would be expected to predict the Russian domestic football tournament.
Public relations guru Max Clifford told CNN that Paul could become the world’s first multimillionaire octopus if his handlers choose to cash in on his global fame.