Feb.16 (GMM) Stefano Domenicali has played down reports that Formula 1 is for sale.
Last month, it was reported that Saudi Arabia’s state investment fund was eyeing the currently Liberty Media-owned asset – with a staggering potential $20 billion price-tag.
FIA president Mohammed Ben Sulayem responded by suggesting the price was “inflated”, earning a strong rebuke from Formula 1’s lawyers.
But the Liberty-appointed F1 CEO, Domenicali, actually denied that the sport’s commercial rights are even for sale.
“That’s a question to ask the shareholders, but I don’t think so,” said the Italian.
Liberty Media paid about $4 billion for the rights in 2017, but Domenicali says a surge in F1’s popularity is due in part to continuing investments.
“We invest in Formula 1 and you can see that we invest real money, like in Las Vegas for example,” said the former Ferrari boss.
“We bought a piece of land there for $240 million. We are building new facilities with a total investment of more than half a billion. So we’re very, very happy,” Domenicali added.
He also said his bosses at Liberty Media continue to be fully supportive of the F1 project.
“It is truly the crown jewel in their portfolio and they fully support what we do,” said Domenicali. “And if you look at the value, it is of course phenomenal.
“I think that’s because of the great work we do together. So I don’t think this issue (a sale) is on the table with the shareholders.”