Site logo

Caterham was initially sold for £1

NEWS STORY
02/12/2014

It has been revealed that Caterham Sports, which designed and built the cars for the Caterham F1 team, was sold for £1.

The Leafield based outfit went into administration in mid-October and consequently missed the United States and Brazilian Grands Prix. However, a crowd funding project raised the necessary funding to allow the team to participate in the season ending race in Abu Dhabi.

Prior to the team going into administration, it had been bought by Constantin Cojocar, a former professional footballer and former director of Romanian transport and logistics company SC Transbus Codreanu.

Cojocar has since admitted that he bought the company with the intention of selling its services to Forza Rossa, the new team which was given the green light in June by the FIA.

Indeed, in the witness statement he supplied as part of Caterham Sports' administration proceedings in late October, Cojocar revealed: "there is one issued share in the Company, and I purchased this on 24 September 2014 for £1. I am now the sole shareholder and director of the Company."

Normally, when one buys a company for the nominal sum of £1, one also takes on the company's debts and liabilities, in this case around £16.2m. However, in October Cojocar parted ways with the team when it went into administration and the creditors are still waiting for their money.

It all stems from a deal which was struck at the end of June. This is when 1MRT, the Malaysian business which owns Caterham's coveted F1 grid slot, was sold to Engavest SA, the mysterious consortium of investors led by Swiss consultant Stefan Gyseler. Subsequently, former F1 driver Christian Albers was installed as chief executive whilst motorsport boss Colin Kolles became an adviser. To clarify, Caterham Sports was owned by 1MRT and provided design, testing and race support services to it in return for a fee.

Although Engavest took control of 1MRT, it did not get the shares in the company. In his witness statement Cojocar said "I understand that the sale and purchase agreement was a conditional agreement and completion has not yet occurred, but that the Purchaser appointed directors to the Company and 1MRT, and the previous directors resigned."

In this confusion it was unclear who should cover 1MRT's costs so bills remained unpaid. Amongst them was the fee to Caterham Sports for providing the design, testing and race support services. Consequently Caterham Sports itself could not pay its bills and on October 4 the severity of its situation leaked into the public domain. This is when the Independent revealed that Caterham Sports had failed to settle 34 unpaid bills totalling £750,000, the smallest coming to just £424. It was followed by equipment being seized from the team's factory by bailiffs so that it could be sold to pay the creditors.

Cojocar claims in his statement that he had a deal with Romanian investors who were due to provide around £2m a week to finance Caterham Sports but they were put off by the action from the bailiffs. Consequently, with insufficient revenue coming into Caterham Sports, Cojocar said he had "no choice but to request that the Company is put into administration." This took place in late October and soon afterwards 1MRT was also put into the administrator's hands.

Administrator Finbarr O'Connell has now revealed that the team has been given special dispensation to run its 2014 car next year. It will make it even more attractive to potential buyers as it does not need to spend money on designing and building a new car.

Nonetheless, it remains a highly tangled web.

LATEST NEWS

more news >

RELATED ARTICLES

LATEST IMAGES

galleries >

  • Pitpass.com latest F1/Formula 1 images
  • Pitpass.com latest F1/Formula 1 images
  • Pitpass.com latest F1/Formula 1 images
  • Pitpass.com latest F1/Formula 1 images
  • Pitpass.com latest F1/Formula 1 images
  • Pitpass.com latest F1/Formula 1 images
  • Pitpass.com latest F1/Formula 1 images
  • Pitpass.com latest F1/Formula 1 images
  • Pitpass.com latest F1/Formula 1 images
  • Pitpass.com latest F1/Formula 1 images
  • Pitpass.com latest F1/Formula 1 images
  • Pitpass.com latest F1/Formula 1 images
  • Pitpass.com latest F1/Formula 1 images
  • Pitpass.com latest F1/Formula 1 images
  • Pitpass.com latest F1/Formula 1 images
  • Pitpass.com latest F1/Formula 1 images
  • Pitpass.com latest F1/Formula 1 images
  • Pitpass.com latest F1/Formula 1 images
  • Pitpass.com latest F1/Formula 1 images
  • Pitpass.com latest F1/Formula 1 images

POST A COMMENT

or Register for a Pitpass ID to have your say

Please note that all posts are reactively moderated and must adhere to the site's posting rules and etiquette.

Post your comment

READERS COMMENTS

 

1. Posted by petes, 08/12/2014 2:47

"You're correct Chris.
I apologise. I didn't draw the distinction between Caterham Sports and the entity (whatever entity that was) that was announced as 'sold' when the team changed hands.
At that time, pretty well any site that reported the issue, reported the deal was done for 'one unit of currency'."

Rating: Neutral (0)     Rate comment: Positive | NegativeReport this comment

2. Posted by Chris, 04/12/2014 4:29

"Petes, I think you're confusing this. It was hardly even reported that Caterham Sports had been sold let alone the price. However, if you can find a link to an article proving your point, please do share it."

Rating: Neutral (0)     Rate comment: Positive | NegativeReport this comment

3. Posted by petes, 03/12/2014 4:31

"Highly tangled is putting it mildly.....

That sale price is not new 'news' was reported at the time, elsewhere, if you haven't come across it previously.

Cocotin comes across as highly sus, out of sync and a complete oxygen thief."

Rating: Neutral (0)     Rate comment: Positive | NegativeReport this comment

Share this page

X

Copyright © Pitpass 2002 - 2022. All rights reserved.

about us  |  advertise  |  contact  |  privacy & security  |  rss  |  terms