McLaren finances healthy after commercial boost

Jon Wilde
Zak Brown, McLaren CEO

Zak Brown has revealed McLaren are “financially healthy” again, despite having had to take a loan from Bahrain’s National Bank in June.

CEO of the F1 team, Brown pointed to new sponsorship deals, and further impending “announcements”, as signs that McLaren have overcome their funding worries.

McLaren were far from being alone in enduring a difficult first half of 2020 due to the global health pandemic and made it clear they needed to secure extra financing to navigate the crisis, while also announcing they would make job cuts.

Besides the loan from Bahrain’s National Bank, recently McLaren have announced sponsorship deals including a renewed arrangement with Gulf Oil, previously a partner of the team from 1968 to 1973.

“I think we are in quite a good position now,” said Brown in quotes reported by Autosport.

“The bad news is behind us, as far as it relates to all the stuff that played out the last couple of months. We are financially healthy.

“I think we are benefiting from being aggressive and playing offence when COVID hit, as far as recognising the severity of the issues it was going to cause for the sport and for us, so we ran towards the problems to try to address them quickly so we can kind of try and turn the page commercially.

“We’ve just announced Gulf Oil and IQONIQ, we have a couple of announcements coming up, so we are now exactly where we want to be.

“I think post-COVID, not that we are in a post-COVID era yet, but looking forward I think we are sitting on a better business model for F1 and for McLaren for the next journey of F1.

“We are in quite a good spot and spirits are high.”

Get your hands on the official McLaren 2020 collection via the Formula 1 store

Brown insisted that recent sponsorship deals represent significant income and said companies are still keen to do business.

He added: “What I’m seeing is people are getting back to business, doing business a little bit differently. Digital and social media, things of that nature which I think we are extremely good at, have become much more important.

“That’s kind of replaced, in the short term, hospitality.

“We’ve got a lot of conversations going, so I’m expecting maybe a little bit slower growth rate than we would have anticipated for 2021, but we are okay.”

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