I mentioned Caterham F1 and the reality that faces the team in an interview I did for Talksport in the UK last Saturday and the reason it came up had more to do with football than Formula 1.
Team owner Tony Fernandes also own Queens Park Rangers (QPR) and they made it to the Premier league last weekend which garnered an 80 million Pound payoff. Fernandes had even touted the joy of owning a football club over the headaches of an F1 team earlier this spring when he gave the team an ultimatum that they deliver this year or that would be the end of it.
Speculation has ramped up now that QPR are doing well and Caterham are not. Some suggested that American businessman Gene Haas may be inclined to buy the team instead of rolling his own now that he’s been accepted into F1 for 2015. Haas, as well as Caterham boss Cyril Abiteboul, says that isn’t the case.
Rumors continue to circulate that the team has been officially put on the “for sale” block and I noticed that report at ESPN’s F1 website today. In response, Caterham have taken to Facebook to tell their side of the story. Caterham’s full statement is as follows:
Despite press rumours to the contrary, Caterham Group is not for sale. The reports circulating this weekend are factually incorrect. It is, however, true that the Group is actively searching for additional investment as it seeks to fulfil ambitious plans to develop.
The shareholders of the Group, co-Chairmen Tony Fernandes and Datuk Kamarudin Meranun, remain wholly committed to the Caterham brand.
Fernandes confirmed: “The Caterham Group is not for sale. We love what we build and we are always looking for further investment. This is no different to how we started AirAsia. Yes, we are constantly challenging ourselves and making decisions on everything from the structure to projects within the Group. That is normal business. That does not mean we are selling.”
So there you have it—investor yes, sale, no.