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Williams posts significant loss

NEWS STORY
10/09/2019

Williams Grand Prix Holdings PLC today announced the group's interim results for the six months to 30 June 2019. WGPH is the ultimate holding company of the Williams group of companies, which includes Williams Grand Prix Engineering Limited and Williams Advanced Engineering Limited.

Group revenue was lower in the first six months of 2019 at 77.8m, compared to 82.6m in the same period last year.

The EBITDA (earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortization) loss widened to 18.8m during the first half of this year, from 2.7m in the prior year.

The F1 operation generated revenue of 46.3m in the six months to 30 June 2019 (2018: 60.7m) with an EBITDA loss of 16.8m (2018: profit of 0.2m).

Williams Advanced Engineering increased revenue to 30.9m in 2019 (2018: 21.5m) with an EBITDA of 2.5m (2018: 2.2m).

Other than losing a number of sponsors, not least title sponsor Martini, the team also saw the departure of Lance Stroll and Sergey Sirotkin, both of whom brought much-needed funding to the team.

Last year the Grove outfit finished last in the standings with 7 points, this year it is likely to finish last again, Robert Kubica having delivered the team's sole point.

"Our financial results reflect a challenging half year for our Formula One operations, yet also demonstrated continued growth in the Williams Advanced Engineering business" said Mike O'Driscoll, Group Chief Executive Officer.

"The Formula One financial results primarily reflect our finishing position in last year's Constructors' Championship and the consequent reduction in prize money (which is paid a year in arrears).

"There was also an overall reduction in partnership income compared to the first half of 2018, although we secured major new partnerships with ROKiT and Orlen.

"Although we are enduring another tough season on track, we have seen some recent signs of improvement, and we continue to attract interest from potential partners as one of the longest standing Formula One teams. This is best demonstrated by the recent two-year extension to our title partnership deal with ROKiT who will now continue with us until at least 2023.

"Negotiations with Formula One management and Liberty Media regarding the future of the sport from 2021 have been productive and we believe, when finalised, will represent a much-needed opportunity for Williams to benefit from a more level financial playing field, as well as new technical regulations.

"Williams Advanced Engineering continues to grow and attract new customers, following a robust performance in 2018. The significant growth in revenue during the first half of 2019 was generated across a diverse range of projects, reflecting an excellent reputation for outstanding programme delivery. The modest growth in EBITDA through the first half of the year is largely a function of timing. The focus remains on providing energy-efficient and technically advanced performance solutions in sectors as diverse as motorsport, aerospace, defence and healthcare.

"Although we continue to face challenges in a very dynamic environment, we currently believe the majority of the impact on EBITDA for the full year has already been captured in these interim results. We continue to believe we are well placed to respond to the challenges ahead, with world class facilities and a strong and talented organisation."

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