FIA and FOTA came to some sort of agreement on cost cutting at their meeting yesterday. We are to see tomorrow what are they so happy about. But besides cutting the expenses the teams also need some sort of income from sponsors or drivers. Here is quick overview of the latest developments on F1 sponsorship front:
There are rumours Lenovo will switch their sponsorship from Williams to McLaren next year. Nothing has been made official yet. The talk is the McLaren deal will not include any logos on the car. This would be the second major departure of sponsor from Williams to other team, after reports that Petrobras’ move to Honda. Well, that Petrobras story broke out before Honda chickened out of F1 …
Positive news for Williams came from Oris. The Swiss watchmaker renewed the sponsorship deal with team (see the full text of the announcement here). This will be 8th year of partnership between Oris and Williams. Allianz and Accenture have been supporting Williams for over a decade and the team hopes Oris will join that 10 year club too. Other sponsors that renewed recently their deals with Williams are Philips and already mentioned Allianz.
It remains to be seen what happens with their other partners. AT&T recently announced massive job cuts, RBS was hit hard by the current global financial chaos. And there is that bunch of Icelandic companies …
It is hard to expect any sponsorship deals unless a buyer is found for the team. But somewhere in that flood of news that followed the teams withdrawal from F1 was a note, that big sponsorship deal was ready to be announced in January.
If we are to believe what Max Mosley says then one of the major backers of the team next year may be … Honda … According to Mosley Honda is ready to help the new owners to get through the 2009 season.
Red Bull has signed a rare sponsorship deal with Dutch IT company Trust. Trust is not a newcomer to F1, Trust logos used to feature on Minardi (2003) and Jordan cars in not that distant past. It does however look that even Trust will not make it on the Red Bull car livery.
With not toomuch money lying around these days it looks like Toro Rosso will return the institution of pay drivers back to F1 after one year pause. Both Sebastien Buemi and Takuma Sato admitted that money will buy the seat. Both of them are in search of personal sponsors.
And for the record, here the joint statement on cost saving FOTA and FIA issued after their meeting yesterday:
Joint statement – FIA and FOTA meeting:
FIA and FOTA have had the most successful meeting on Formula One matters which any of the participants can remember. Agreement was reached on measures to meet all the objectives originally put forward by the FIA for 2010 and thereafter in addition to which FOTA have now made proposals for very significant cost saving in 2009 while maintaining Formula One at the pinnacle of motor sport and reinforcing its appeal. These proposals will be put to the FIA WMSC on Friday following which full details will be released.
FIA President Max Mosley:
“I am delighted with the outcome of this meeting.”
FOTA President Luca di Montezemolo:
“The unity of the teams was fundamental to meeting the goals for a new Formula One, but with the same DNA, as requested by the FIA.”