Update | Wolff on selling F1 team to Ineos: "Mercedes is not interested"
By Robert McGillivray 14 September 2020 | 11:11
Remarkable news appeared in the Daily Mail on Sunday morning. The British medium reports that Ineos, the current sponsor of Mercedes, together with investor Jim Ratcliffe, are close to taking over Mercedes. The parties are said to be paying some EUR 750 million for the deal, which will give them ownership of the team.
The news comes as a surprise, as Mercedes explicitly stated at the beginning of the current season that it had no intention of selling the team. However, it now seems that it will, as Ratcliffe and Ineos will own about 70% of the shares.
Wolff will have an advisory role
The British newspaper also describes the future role of Toto Wolff in the team. The Austrian would sell his shares in the team (about thirty percent, red) to Ineos, so the successful team boss would no longer be a shareholder of Mercedes AMG F1 Team. He will also relinquish his position as team boss, something he has already hinted at in recent weeks. Instead, Wolff will take on an advisory role, similar to that of Helmut Marko at Red Bull.
Much remains unclear about the new name of the team for the time being. It is possible that the German automobile group, when selling the team, stipulated that the name 'Mercedes' would remain with the team for at least another two years, until 2022. It is said that the name 'Ineos' will also be added in 2021.
Jordan confirms news, comes with details
Several sources, including former Formula 1 team boss Eddie Jordan, confirm the news of the takeover. "It was a logical step because the Mercedes board wanted to put less money into the project and Ineos was already closely involved," says Jordan, referring to the already existing sponsorship agreement of €110 million a year between Mercedes and the chemical company. "The team will be named after Ineos, but much remains the same. The team will 'just' operate from the Brackley plant". (Photo: Mercedes AMG F1)
Update 20:15 (13/09) | Wolff on selling F1 team: "Mercedes is not interested"
Toto Wolff announced after the Tuscany Grand Prix that Mercedes has zero plans to distance itself from the Formula 1 team. The team boss of the Brackley race stable states that nothing is going to change.
"Daimler (the parent company of Mercedes, ed.) has no intention of giving up the team. In addition, Ineos has no intention of taking a majority share in the team. The future is clear, this remains the Mercedes team", says Wolff at Sky Deutschland.
During the race weekend at Mugello rumours came out that Wolff would cash hundreds of millions thanks to the sale of the successful F1 team. Ineos would pay 755 million euros to become a major shareholder. (Photo: Mercedes AMG F1)
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