Motorola and Ferrari

MOTOROLA is expected to announce shortly that it is to produce a Ferrari-branded mobile telephone. The deal is believed to have come about thanks to the Italian team's deal with Vodafone, which has a deal with Motorola for the supply of telephones for Vodafone subscribers. The various parties are expected to share the revenues generated by the deal.

The agreement, which is expected to be announced shortly, is an example of the more imaginative money-raising schemes being used by the top F1 teams these days. Less popular teams have had less success with such cross-marketing ideas but they nonetheless provide some income at a time when finding big new sponsors is not easy to do. This is in part due to the recession which followed September 11 but also because of the uncertainty that exists in Formula 1 circles because of the current impasse between Kirch, Bernie Ecclestone and the automobile manufacturers over the future ownership of the F1 commercial rights. The situation will remain blocked until the future of Kirch is clear and even then there will then need to be a settlement between Ecclestone and the car manufacturers. If the situation remains blocked, the small teams say, there is little point in them continuing in F1 as it will be impossible for them to find the money to go competing.

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