F1 in no rush over IPO
One of the men behind the proposed flotation of Formula One on the Stock Exchange has revealed the plans may again be put on hold until next year.
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An Initial Public Offering (IPO) was scheduled to take place in Singapore last September, but due to the instability of the market at that time a decision was taken to delay until this year.
Only last month F1 supremo Bernie Ecclestone claimed the IPO would "happen this year, it will be up and running", with such a move expected to value the sport at around £6.5billion.
However, Donald Mackenzie, who is the co-founder and co-chairman of private equity firm CVC Capital Partners whose stake in F1 is just under 35 per cent, has now suggested the IPO may yet be delayed further.
"Our position on the IPO is when the market is right and the company is ready we'll look at it," said Mackenzie.
"Although the IPO market is better than it was a year ago, the company still has a few issues to sort out.
"So it may happen this year, it may be next year, but we're not in a big rush."
After taking control of F1 in 2006, CVC has over the past year sold tranches of its shares to money management firms BlackRock, Waddell & Reed and Norges, the investment division of Norway's central bank, reducing its stake from just over 63 per cent to its current level.
The IPO would appear to suggest CVC will end its involvement in the sport for good, but not so according to Mackenzie.
"We'd like to retain a stake in the business," added Mackenzie.
"We like being a shareholder, even though we get a bit of grief every so often from people who don't really know what they're talking about in my opinion.
"Selling shares in the company is not taking money out of the sport."
Over the Monaco Grand Prix weekend CVC was accused by Force India deputy team principal Bob Fernley of having "raped the sport", and that it was "the worst thing that has ever happened to Formula One".
Fernley apologised to Mackenzie for his remarks, with the latter insisting they are "not the bad guys", and that they "care about this sport".