BMW-Williams F1's major sponsor Compaq has been taken over by rival IT giant Hewlett Packard in deal worth around ?20 billion.

A spokesperson for Williams though said the team was not 'unduly concerned' by the announcement. According to reports by The Financial Times the newly formed company will retain the Hewlett Packard name and Carly Fiorina current chairman and chief executive of HP will remain in overall charge. Michael Capellas currently the chairman of Compaq, will become president of HP.

It is not known at this time what will happen to the current Compaq sponsorship deal with Williams (believed to be a three-year package that commenced in 2000) but Hewlett Packard itself already has some involvement in F1 through Jaguar and Jordan.

It seems likely though that HP are more likely to opt with staying with Williams than the other two because the Grove based team currently seems to be on the verge of another golden era. One possible scenario therefore is that the Compaq deal will continue under the newly formed company with the name Compaq being replaced with Hewlett Packard - HP branding on the Williams-BMW FW24 in 2002? Watch this space...

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