DECEMBER 18, 2000
McLaren boss believes diversifying is the key to F1 success
MCLAREN chairman Ron Dennis has expressed the view that it is not only commercially desirable, but also absolutely crucial to his team's entire F1 future, that the TAG McLaren group continues to expand and diversify.
Speaking in the December edition of Racing Lines, the TAG McLaren group corporate magazine, Dennis outlines his thoughts about the development of F1 as a business over the next generation - and believes that McLaren's corporate creed could usefully be adopted by rival F1 teams.
"I have a very strong belief that if McLaren had remained singularly as a Formula 1 team,irrespective of the success we have achieved in the past, or achieve in the future, we would inevitably fail as an organization," he insists.
"What in effect I am inviting our readers to consider is the way the Formula 1 business might develop over the next 20 years. Can we remain as purely a Formula 1 team? My answer is 'no.' We will only sustain success as a Formula 1 team if we make significant investments into a whole range of technology and manufacturing facilities which you would never be able to justify purely for the benefit of a Formula 1 racing organization.
According to Dennis, teams need to be able to capitalize on, and utilize, those resources for other purposes in order to justify the scale of those investments. And this comes at a time when we are faced with a number of large motor manufacturers coming into Formula 1.
"Speaking specifically for the TAG McLaren Group, we came out of the gate, so to speak, several years ago when we bought the land and committed to building Paragon. We did that because we anticipated other large automobile manufacturers putting very significant investment into huge technical resources.
"Of course, whether those car makers can create the required culture to achieve their goals in Formula 1 remains to be seen. But they will have the resources available and we have to match them in order to avoid some of the good people in your company moving, attracted by the technical resources at their disposal."
"If a company is making money then it is able to contribute to the health of the group as a whole. As a result of this, I and my fellow directors believe that the TAG McLaren Group is a very strong commercial entity which is very well equipped to address the challenge of the future.
"That challenge is not simply about winning Formula 1 races, but also the successful execution of the SLR project and the implementation of our plans in respect of the Paragon project and the rest of the group companies."
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