OCTOBER 21, 2002
Is peace about to break out?
The SUDDEUTSCHE ZEITUNG newspaper has been a useful source of information about Formula 1 in recent years, thanks to its strong connections in industry and finance circles in southern Germany. Thus, when the newspaper reports that a solution has been found between the banks which are now in control of the Formula One group of companies and the car manufacturers, the story must be taken seriously.
According to the report published this morning there is a deal in place to extend the Concorde Agreement for another 10 years, until 2017. The story suggested that this would be done with two five-year contracts, allowing for a certain amount of renegotiation between them. There are no details of how the money in F1 would be divided up in the future but the story did suggest that in the long-term the deal will see the car companies and the teams take equity in the Formula One business. As part of the deal the banks would give the teams more of the income which comes into the Formula One group and its associated companies.
There have been several stories in recent months saying that a deal is done but on each occasion there has been a swift denial from one side or the other so it will be interesting to see whether there are going to be any reaction from the GPWC, the manufacturers' organization, or from the banks.
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