Liberty Media boss addresses Concorde Agreement update as fresh talks loom

Sam Cooper
Liberty Media CEO Greg Maffei

Liberty boss Greg Maffei expects the Concorde Agreement to be largely the same.

Liberty Media boss Greg Maffei expects the next round of Concorde Agreement negotiations to be an easy process.

The current Concorde Agreement, which is a contract between the FIA, the F1 teams and the Formula One Group that dictates the terms by which the teams compete in races, TV revenue and prize money, has been in place since the 2021 season but is due to expire at the end of 2025.

Already some teams have been haggling for issues they would like addressed, most notably the value of the anti-dilution fund, but F1’s owners expect a similar agreement to be found.

Liberty Media CEO not expecting ‘major change’ to Concorde Agreement

While negotiations for the Concorde Agreement were often a long and arduous process in the past, it has become easier since Liberty Media took over in 2017 with the COVID pandemic being the main delay in the latest discussion.

But this would not be F1 if teams did not have their own agenda and even if the current terms are already two years away from their end, some have voiced their concern for arrangements they want changed.

The most prominent is the anti-dilution fund – the entry fee for new teams which is effectively then spread between the existing ones – which in the wake of rising interest in becoming an F1 team as well as a boost in the sport’s success, has been argued that the current fee of $200 million no longer represents a fair deal.

That will no doubt be near the top of the agenda when stakeholders do eventually meet but Liberty CEO Maffei is confident the new deal will be similar to the current one.

“What we’re basically talking about is an early renewal of a deal that is very similar to the terms that they have today,” he said at a Goldman Sachs event, as reported by Motorsport.com.

“Why do we think that’s a benefit? I think we can all sell sponsors, we can sell broadcasters, we can sell all people on the certainty of the sport, and you de-risk any of the potential in the future.

“I think they [the teams] have the opportunity to go out and sell the same sponsors on those ideas. So all of that is why everyone sort of wants to extend the current regime. And I think we’ve seen good interest in that.

“If you look over the last five years, the percentage [of revenue paid to the teams] has gone down. That’s largely due to the fact that there is a number at which we kick into a higher percentage.

“We said we would guarantee ‘X’ amount of payouts, but above a certain percentage, we’re betting on ourselves. And if we get to that percentage of pre-team EBITDA (earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation, and amortisation), we’ll take a larger split.

“What’s happened as we’ve grown the sport is that the amount above that split number has grown, so our share has grown.”

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But in terms of what comes next, Maffei was not expecting a “major change.”

“I don’t anticipate a major change in how that works. There will probably be something along the same lines, and we’ll have an incentive to grow the business.

“They [the teams] have grown EBITDA dramatically. We’ve just because of the success and believing in the product and believing in ourselves been able to grow it faster, and I expect that it’s going to be a similar construct in any kind of Concorde extension.”

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