Bernie Ecclestone has suggested Formula 1 could be sold to one of three potential buyers in the next couple of months.
As it stands, Ecclestone retains a 5.3 per cent share in F1, with CVC Capital Partners holding the controlling share of 35.5 per cent it has held since it took over the sport in 2006 for around $2 billion. A handful of other investors, including Blackrock, Waddell & Reed, Norges and failed bank Lehman Brothers also hold a stake.
However, speaking at the Camp Beckenbauer Global Summit, Ecclestone says three interested parties have come forward with a view to purchasing Formula 1, before revealing he expects a new owner to be established by the end of the year.
“There has been a lot of interest and there are three [interested parties] at the moment,” he said. “I'll be surprised if one of them does not buy them shortly.”
Though he doesn't reveal who is behind the aforementioned bids, it is known a bid fronted by NFL Miami Dolphins owner Stephen Ross – with investment from Qatar – had signalled an interest in buying CVC's controlling stake.
Though it remains to be seen whether interested parties will come forward and the sport will indeed come under new control – particularly as CVC Capital Partners hasn't signalled a desire to sell its stake -, Ecclestone says he is likely to remain in charge of the sport regardless, a role he has now retained since 1978.