Sauber will continue in Formula One following a takeover by Swiss investment company Longbow Finance S.A.
The Formula One team’s future has been the topic of much speculation of late due to financial difficulties. Today’s news means that Sauber can continue in the sport. It has also been confirmed that there will be no changes to the the company or team name.
Sauber was founded in the 70s by Peter Sauber and they made their Formula One debut in 1993 with Mercedes engines. In 2005 the team was sold to BMW and they raced as BMW Sauber from 2006 until 2010, although BMW pulled out at the end of the 2009 season. Up until the acquisition by Longbow Finance, Peter Sauber had owned 66.6% of the team – having bought it back in 2010 – with Team Principal Monisha Kaltenborn owning the remaining stakes.
“Monisha and I yesterday signed an agreement which secures the future of the Formula 1 Team and the Sauber Group,” Peter Sauber revealed in a statement. “I am very happy that my courageous investment to buy the team back, which I made six years ago, with the intention to secure the base in Hinwil and the place in Formula 1 has proved to be correct.”
As a result of the takeover Peter Sauber will retire and will be succeeded by Pascal Picci as Chairman of Sauber Holding. Kaltenborn will remain as Team Principal and CEO.
“We are very pleased that by reaching an agreement with Longbow Finance S.A., we can secure the future of Sauber at the pinnacle of motorsport,” Kalenborn said. “We are convinced that Longbow Finance is the perfect partner to again make the team competitive and successful in Formula 1. At the same time the new structure will allow us to finally further expand our third party business in which we commercialise our know-how. This solution is in the best interest of our employees, partners, loyal suppliers, the base in Hinwil and for the Swiss motorsport. We are very grateful that Longbow Finance believes in the competences efficiency and capabilities of Sauber Group, and we look forward to a new exciting future.”
Sauber are currently the only team to have scored no points in 2016. They have also been forced to sit out both in-season tests so far – one in Barcelona and one at Silverstone. Marcus Ericsson and Felipe Nasr currently drive for the team but notable drivers in their history include Sergio Perez, Nico Hulkenberg, Robert Kubica, Nick Heidfeld, Kimi Raikkonen, Felipe Massa, and Jacques Villeneuve.