JANUARY 5, 2004
Interpublic keeps hold of Silverstone
The Interpublic Group of Companies may have agreed to sell the four racing circuits which were previously owned by its Brands Hatch Circuits Ltd. subsidiary but it remains the leaseholder for Silverstone. Brands Hatch Circuits Ltd. is being renamed Silverstone Motorsport Ltd. and Interpublic says that it is intending to honour its commitments to Silverstone.
Andrew Waller becomes the managing director of Silverstone Motorsport.
The details of the sale of Brands Hatch have not been made public but it is probable that Interpublic included in the deal some form of non-compete clause in relation to the British Grand Prix. Interpublic has leased Silverstone until 2015 and pays the British Racing Drivers' Club something in the region of $7m a year as a result. In addition to that Interpublic is the promoter of the British GP and pays around $13m a year to Bernie Ecclestone for the race. There are also the associated costs in hosting the race and maintaining Silverstone all year round which means that it is hard for the track to make a profit as income is restricted to money made selling F1 tickets and then whatever money can be raised from the renting out of the track, corporate days, promotional events, racing schools and so on. The contract with the BRDC is believed to have a break clause in 2007.
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