No more "snot-gobbling" vows Maffei of Concorde negotiations


Though F1 now takes a larger slice of the cake, Liberty Media CEO, Greg Maffei is confident that long, drawn-out negotiations over the Concorde Agreement are a thing of the past.

Under Bernie Ecclestone, negotiations would go on and on and on and on, the F1 supremo using all his guile to control the narrative, be it smoke and mirrors or the old divide and conquer ploy.

Under Liberty however, things appear to be entirely different, with all involved seemingly working towards the same aim... to make as much money as possible.

The next Concorde isn't due until 2026, the year of the next major rules overhaul, and though there remain plenty of Is to be dotted and Ts crossed, Maffei isn't expecting too much trouble.

Interestingly, however, this will be the first Concorde to be negotiated by Stefano Domenicali, who as Ferrari boss used to sit on the other side of the table.

"What we're basically talking about is an early renewal of a deal that is very similar to the terms that they have today," Maffei told a Goldman Sachs event. "Providing stability and certainty about where we're going is a benefit to them.

"You've seen the value of F1 rise dramatically," he continued, "the reality is the teams' valuations have increased much faster. They see the benefit of the regime that we've together created, they see the benefit of extending that deal.

"Why do we think that's a benefit? I think we can all sell sponsors, we can sell broadcasters, we can sell all people on the certainty of the sport, and you de-risk any of the potential in the future."

This, he believes, will give teams "the opportunity to go out and sell the same sponsors on those ideas, so all of that is why everyone sort of wants to extend the current regime - and I think we've seen good interest in that.

"We got it done this time," he said. "We're trying to change the dynamic. I credit first Chase Carey and now Stefano with changing the dynamic with the teams, where we are far more aligned.

"That doesn't mean they want to pay us more!" he laughed. "But they all agree on the value of what we're doing together, and that growing the pie has been a positive thing for everybody."

Referring to F1's own increasing slice of the cake, he said: "Above a certain percentage, we're betting on ourselves. What's happened as we've grown the sport is that the amount above that split number has grown, so our share has grown.

"I don't anticipate a major change in how that works. There will probably be something along the same lines, and we'll have an incentive to grow the business."

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Published: 11/09/2023
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