Credit Suisse leaves BMW

It is being reported that Financial giant Credit Suisse is leaving as title sponsor for the BMW Sauber F1 team at the end of 2008.  This is huge news as Credit Suisse has been associated with Sauber for eight years.It is also being suggested that Credit Suisse’s small ownership percentage is being bought by Peter Sauber leaving him with 20% and BMW the remaining 80% of ownership.

If you have read any financial news lately you are probably aware of the current financial crunch that most of the worlds economies are facing right now.  In fact, Credit Suisse seems to be taking measures to prevent any major credit crunch or fallout.  I suspect part of that plan is to reduce their expenditures on F1 related activities as it is not a part of the slow and cautious process.

This is a large blow to BMW Sauber.  Peter Sauber has been associated with the private bank for many years and the reduction of revenue and investment will leave a large gap in the resources needed to run an F1 team.  While BMW can most assuredly find another title spnsor given their success this year and direction they are heading in, this signals a larger concern that the world economic credit crunch is starting to impact F1.  While most industries are scaling back, F1 has seemed impervious to the credit woes of many of the worlds nations.  Until now.  Without tobacco advertising money, teams have had to find other products that compliment the revenue needed to run a team.  These new sources of sponsorship are usually corporate and therefore affected by volatile markets.

I trust Dr. Mario is working with other sponsors to replace Credit Suisse, they will surely be missed.

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