Anton Andres / Formula 1 | September 08, 2016 15:36
Liberty Media takes first steps in acquiring Formula 1
Since last year, Formula 1 Chief Executive, Bernie Ecclestone, has been telling reporters that the sport will be sold off to new management sometime in the future. Ecclestone has been part of the sport's management since the mid-70's and is ready to let a new company take control.
The company taking over is Liberty Media, which has begun taking steps in acquiring Formula 1. The media company has put down a US$1.1 payment to Ecclestone for an 18.7 percent stake in the sport. This also means Formula 1 will be getting a new chairman as well. Once payment is complete, Formula 1 will be in the hands of Chase Carey. Carey is currently the executive vice chairman of 21st Century Fox. Carey's experience in broadcasting spans three decades and is one of the people responsible for the launch of Fox Sports and Fox News.
In the agreement, Liberty Media will be investing US$ 4.4 billion in F1. The company will also assume, and eventually settle, the sport's debt of US$ 4.1 billion. The deal between Ecclestone and Liberty Media is expected to be closed by the first quarter of 2017. All in all, Liberty Media will be paying an enterprise value of over US$ 8 billion.
In the meantime, Ecclestone will still be chief executive of Formula 1 as he oversees the transition to Liberty Media. He will be working alongside Carey who will be more involved in the operations of the series.