The mechanics of the “deal of the century”

17 November, 2009

Mercedes Grand Prix newest Formula 1 team to debut in 2010

Agnes Carlier delves into the mechanics of the big deal between Brawn GP and Mercedes, dubbed as the deal of the century, which has resulted in the formation of Mercedes Grand Prix racing team. She highlights the key players, interested parties, the money due to change hands and the implications for McLaren, Brawn and Mercedes.

Jenson Button with Norbert Haug

Now that McLaren has  agreed that Mercedes-Benz has committed to continue not only as an engine supplier but also as a partner  that will power McLaren’s Formula 1 cars until 2015 – and perhaps thereafter.

Formula One world champion Jenson Button is reported to have agreed terms on a three-year deal with McLaren and could sign a contract any time soon with the team. This is true McLaren style to have two world Champions in the same team. The next few years will be a very exciting time for McLaren, during which  they could become an ever-stronger technological, racing and economic force.

McLaren/Mercedes-Benz partnership started in 1995 and was one of the longest engine-supply associations in Formula 1 history; 2009 was its 15th consecutive year and 2015 will be its 21st consecutive year.

McLaren continues association with Mercedes

The F1 racing team will continue to be known as Vodafone McLaren Mercedes. The distinctive silver-with-red livery will remain unchanged. Mercedes-Benz will continue as both an engine supplier and a partner

Meanwhile, the McLaren Group  purchases back 40 per cent shareholding currently owned by Daimler AG. As a result, the McLaren Group will become fully independent.

How it works within “McLaren”: The McLaren Group is  the parent company of McLaren Racing (and Vodafone McLaren Mercedes), McLaren Marketing, McLaren Electronic Systems, McLaren Applied Technologies and McLaren Electronics Inc (USA), focusing chiefly on Formula 1 and associated technologies.

McLaren Automotive  will be independent from the McLaren group and as of 2011 will manufacture its own range of high-performance production sports cars, the MP4-12C,  to  have a car that has inherited the genes of the McLaren F1 of 1994.

Aarbar Chairman Khadem Al-Qubaisi (Photo courtesy Reuters)

Meanwhile,  Aabar Investments the Abu Dhabi investment fund which is 70 percent owned by the oil-rich Abu Dhabi emirate wants to raise its stake in Daimler AG, (the world’s second-largest maker of luxury cars). Aabar Investments increases participation from 9.1% to 15%. which makes Aabar Investments the company with the biggest stake in automaker Daimler AG. They are teaming with the Mercedes-Benz manufacturer to buy a controlling stake in Formula 1 championship team Brawn GP and Daimler and Aabar today announced the purchase of 75.1 percent of the Brawn Grand Prix racing team, whose driver Jenson Button won this year’s Formula One championship. The German company and Aabar are paying 110 million pounds ($183 million) between them,  Khadem Abdulla Al-Qubaisi said.

As a result, Daimler will own 45.1 percent of the Brawn GP F1 team, while Abu Dhabi government-run Aabar will have a 30 percent share. The remaining quarter will stay with the existing owners. the current reigning 2010 world champion team will compete in next year’s Formula 1 season under the existing leadership of Ross Brawn.


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