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post #1 of 2 (permalink) Old 12-16-2009, 09:37 AM Thread Starter
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Genii Capital secures Renault's F1 Future

* Renault

Genii Capital secures Renault's F1 Future
ESPNF1 Staff
December 16, 2009
Renault confirms strategic partnership with Gerard Lopez's Genii Capital © Sutton Images

Renault has secured its future by forming a strategic partnership with Genii Capital, an investment company headed by Gerard Lopez. The team will run under the Renault name in 2010, and Renault will continue to supply engines both to the team that carries their name and Red Bull.

"I am delighted to welcome Genii Capital as our new strategic partner," said Bernard Rey, Renault F1 team president. "I am sure that their enthusiasm and business expertise will create a new dynamic for the team, the staff, and our partners. Altogether, we look forward to competing again at the highest level in Formula One."

Genii Capital investment manager, Julien Nerguisian told ESPNF1 that the team would continue under the Renault name in 2010 and possibly 2011 - although nothing has been confirmed beyond the end of next season. He added that in-depth details on the deal would not be made available to the press, and said rumours that Genii had taken a 75% share in the team did not come from Renault or his company.

Genii beat British company Prodrive to the investment opportunity after a month of speculation over the future of the team. It is understood two other buyers were in consideration - although their identities were never revealed. The board opted for Genii following encouragement by Bernie Ecclestone.

Lopez was one of the early investors in Skype and also holds a stake in the driver management company Gravity. Chinese driver Ho-Pin Tung, who is managed by Gravity, was a last minute addition to Renault's young driver line-up earlier this month. ESPNF1 has been told that the team is evaluating him alongside a number of other drivers to partner Robert Kubica in 2010.

Renault's CEO Carlos Ghosn, who authorised the sale, has been sceptical about the team's involvement in F1 for some time. The team did itself no favours in its attempt to remain in the sport when it suffered the embarrassment of the race-fixing scandal in September.

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post #2 of 2 (permalink) Old 12-16-2009, 09:41 AM Thread Starter
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2nd UPDATE: Renault Sells Majority Stake In Formula One Team

* DECEMBER 16, 2009, 10:33 A.M. ET
2nd UPDATE: Renault Sells Majority Stake In Formula One Team -

2nd UPDATE: Renault Sells Majority Stake In Formula One Team

(Updates with company executive comment)

By David Pearson

PARIS (Dow Jones)--Renault SA (RNO.FR) Wednesday ended speculation that it might pull out of Formula One motor racing completely, saying it plans to remain in the sport but will sell a majority stake of its team to Genii Capital, a Luxembourg-based company specializing in new technologies, brand management and motor sport.

The partners will operate the team together, Renault said, and a letter of intent will be signed by the two companies early next year.

A Renault spokeswoman declined to say exactly how much of the team Renault is selling, or give an indication of how much Renault might realize from the sale. People familiar with the plan said that Renault wants to retain a 25% stake. Renault's Formula 1 managing director, Jean-Francois Caubet, told journalists the move will let Renault cut the team's "net costs" in half.

The Renault team will retain its name and its identity and will continue to be supplied with Renault-developed engines. Renault will also continue to supply engines to the Red Bull Racing Formula One team for the 2010 season.

Renault said it "believes that the impact of Formula One in terms of image, and brand awareness worldwide, particularly in new, emerging markets, will continue to play a key role in fulfilling the company's growth objectives in years ahead."

"The important cost reduction measures, made possible by the collective work within the Formula One Team Association, have already improved significantly the operating cost base" on Formula One racing, Renault said, adding that the sale to Genii Capital "will definitely bring F1 participation to an affordable level for the group."

Renault won the Formula One championship in 2005 and 2006.

The team became embroiled in allegations of race-fixing this year over the Singapore Grand Prix in 2008. Driver Nelson Piquet Jr. was ordered by team boss Flavio Briatore to crash his car, allowing team mate Fernando Alonso to win the race.

In September, the Federation Internationale Automobile, which oversees Formula One racing, found the team guilty of fixing the outcome of the race and handed down a two-year suspended ban from Formula One.

Renault Chief Executive Carlos Ghosn has said on several occasions in recent years that Renault would remain in Formula One motor racing provided the team could show results.

-By David Pearson, Dow Jones Newswires; +33140171740,
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