F1 close to signing 'technology partner'?


It's understood that Bernie Ecclestone is to meet with representatives of the Korean technical giant LG in London today (Wednesday), prompting speculation that the sport is on the verge of announcing its first 'technology partnership'.

Last week, Pitpass' business reporter Chris Sylt revealed that Nick Clarry, UK managing director of F1's owner CVC, had admitted that the sport is looking to follow the example of the Olympics and (football) World Cup, by appointing (for a price) various international companies as part of a global partner programme.

"We are building a global partner programme like the Olympics and World Cup, with a range of partners such as official finance partner and official logistics partner," said Clarry. German insurer Allianz and DHL hold these roles respectively and it is thought that official mobile phone and soft drinks partners may not be far off. "Next might come greater focus on internet and merchandise rights," admitted Clarry.

It's thought that today's meeting is the first step in this ambitious, but financially rewarding, programme as F1 seeks to build a partner portfolio to rival the Olympics.

Amongst other things, LG is heavily involved in the mobile phone industry, which would fit in nicely with CVC's plans, as revealed by Clarry.

Pitpass sources claim that it would not be worth F1 contacting Coca Cola with a view to securing the soft drink deal, the American giant still recovering from its previous encounter with the sport.

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Published: 26/11/2008
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