The private equity arm of the Lloyds Banking Group has taken a stake in the new Manor GP team, which will run under the Virgin Racing banner for the 2010 F1 season.
While a statement issued by Lloyds TSB Development Capital (LDC) didn't mention any figures, the Financial Times
reports that the investment could be worth as much as £10 million.
Despite Lloyds being bailed out by the taxpayer during the financial downturn, LDC insisted that the investment was an attractive one for the company to make.
“Manor Grand Prix is an attractive investment opportunity that supports a highly respected UK team with proven, world-leading technical, commercial and racing expertise in one of the most popular international sports,” a statement read. “The investment is consistent with LDC's core investment principles of seeking out unusually attractive market segments, and then backing British business, proven management teams and of continuing to invest throughout the business cycle.
“LDC believes that an investment now in a F1 team is most attractive as the governing body, the FIA, has moved to ensure that an already very attractive industry will be made more viable in the future. In August this year a new Resource Restriction Agreement (RRA) was signed, which aims to return costs to the levels that prevailed in the early 1990s.”
Manor, which has already signed Timo Glock for 2010, will officially launch it alliance with Richard Branson's Virgin Group tomorrow (Tuesday) in London.
Lucas di Grassi is widely expected to be named as Glock's team-mate, having revealed that he has signed a deal to move into F1 next year.