Friday 20 October 2017

CVC races ahead with their plans to sell Formula 1

Red Bull Racing driver Sebastian Vettel steers his car during the second practice session for Sunday's Japanese Formula One Grand Prix at the Suzuka Circuit, Japan
Red Bull Racing driver Sebastian Vettel steers his car during the second practice session for Sunday's Japanese Formula One Grand Prix at the Suzuka Circuit, Japan

Joyce Koh, Ruth David and Kiel Porter

Private equity firm CVC Capital Partners has revived plans for an initial public offering (IPO) of Formula One in the event that talks to sell the motor-racing group fall apart, sources said yesterday.

London-based buyout firm CVC is working with advisors from Goldman Sachs, Morgan Stanley and UBS on a possible IPO of the company in Singapore in early 2015, according to the sources.

CVC has been in discussions with John Malone's Liberty Global, which owns UPC here in Ireland, and Discovery Communications about a deal for several months, but discussions have stalled over a valuation gap of about $1bn (€790m), people with knowledge of the matter said in June.

Flotation

A stock market flotation of Formula 1 could raise as much as $3bn, they said.

CVC previously attempted an IPO of the company in 2012, halting the plan as the Eurozone crisis affected global equity markets. IPOs globally had their best quarter since 2010 in the three months through September, excluding a record sale of Alibaba Group, encouraging more sellers to the market.

Representatives for CVC, Goldman Sachs, Morgan Stanley and UBS declined to comment.

CVC owns about 35.5pc of Formula One, while the old Lehman Brothers owns 15.3pc.

In August, Munich judges overseeing a German corruption case against Formula 1 chief executive officer Bernie Ecclestone signed off on a $100m settlement after prosecutors agreed to have the case dropped upon the payment. (Bloomberg)

Irish Independent

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